From picture books to graphic novels, fantasy to family fun, these must-read books have the power to hook both boys and girls. Some are cultural touchstones that belong in every kid’s library. Others open kids’ minds to cultures beyond their own. And some are modern releases that have the timeless quality of classics — the kinds that get handed down to siblings and passed around classrooms. Whether you have a reluctant reader or budding bookworm, check out these sure-fire, kid-tested titles.
Silliness that appeals to preschoolers.
Charming bedtime book is magic for truck lovers.
The ultimate going-to-bed book.
Carle brings humor to caterpillar’s development.
Classic all-ages masterpiece has a wild imagination.
Imagination reigns in timeless classic about drawing boy.
Beatrix Potter’s first and one of her best.
A kids’ classic that put Dr. Seuss on the map.
Engaging stories spotlight charming, relatable characters.
Rhyming classic is a sure winner with kids.
Beloved, classic stories and poems in one volume.
Funny, silly pig story great for early readers.
Ramona tale helps young kids build empathy.
Classic morality tale is highly entertaining.
A sure hit with kids starting chapter books.
Excellent bridge from chapter books to novels.
Irresistible collection of clever, hilarious poems.
Gentle, much-loved classic delights all ages.
Strange, surreal tale sure to creep kids out.
Magical start of bestselling Potter phenomenon.
Classic Narnia chronicle has Christian themes.
Brave mouse adventure a modern classic; great read-aloud.
A classic that both adults and kids love.
Beloved classic features lovable, imaginative heroine.
A cliff-hanging adventure wrapped in black humor.
Milder than Wimpy Kid, and a sure hit with boys.
Honest, moving story of friendship and loss.
Well-crafted tale of an orphan’s search for home.
Laugh-out-loud-funny series start tucks lessons in stories.
Brilliantly written, inventive pre-LOTR tale.
Modernized Greek myths meet fast-paced adventure.
Classic view of pioneer life through a little girl’s eyes.
Toddler antics bug brother, amuse readers in 1st Fudge book.
Classic sci-fi story still inspires and gets kids thinking.
Historical fiction at its best in book on ’30s farmworkers.
Touching story of resourceful girl solving a family mystery.
Inspiring memoir of teen Nobel laureate shot by Taliban.
Inspiring, educational immigrant story told in free verse.
Gripping, inspiring wilderness-survival adventure.
Gripping story, great intro to China’s Cultural Revolution.
Dramatic, complex tale has rich characters, emotional depth.
Inspiring wartime journal reveals teen’s inner life.
Moving, uplifting tale of disfigured boy with inner beauty.
Boy genius trains to crush alien invasion in sci-fi classic.
Spectacular fantasy classic is where Frodo’s journey begins.
Exciting, provocative tale of lethal reality show.
Stylish dystopian thriller in a not-so-future Los Angeles.
Powerful graphic novel captures spirit of desegregation.
Story of ostracized kid a timeless fave of teens, preteens.
Stunning classic examines racism — and justice