45 Picture Books to Give This Holiday Season!

Give your child the adventure of a lifetime without leaving the house

I have always loved to read. As a child, I would just escape into the different worlds of monsters and silly stories. Now that I am an adult with my own child, I absolutely love love love reading him picture books. To be honest, I really enjoy the picture books as well so it is a win win situation for the both of us during story time. Here are 45 picture books, new and old, that any kid would love to open on Christmas morning.

1. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak- This book has a layer a fright that is just enough to intrigue a child. The main character Max escapes into an imaginary world full of creatures and monsters. His level of imagination reminds me of the child in all of us.

2. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin- These wild little alphabet letters are trying to climb up the coconut tree! The pages are full of vibrant colors and can easily grab the attention of any busy toddler. Not to mention the educational aspect, of course!

3. Brown Bear Brown Bear by Eric Carle- Truly a classic heard around every story time or library session. Brown Bear is an interactive book that pulls in the children’s attention with a fun sing-a-long.

4. Little Blue Truck by Alice Schertle- While reminiscent of the Little Engine That Could, this little blue truck is brave and doesn’t let his size get in the way of saving the day!

5. Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae- The giraffes in this unique story book have a different approach to getting their boogie on in the jungle. By the end, they realize that everyone has their own way of dancing no matter how wild!

6. Elephant and Piggie series by Mo Williems- I am trying to contain my excitement at this moment because I absolutely love Mo Williems and this series. These two go on all sorts of silly and hilarious adventures. There is no doubt that any kid, or adult, will love these as much as I do!

7. The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt- The crayons are fed up and want to be heard. The complaints range from under usage to not having an adequate wrapper.  Each letter will leave your child treating their crayons with a bit more TLC.

8. Love is You and Me by Monica Sheehan- I purchased this for my son when he was still a little guy around Valentines day. It is so sweet and expresses just how wonderful love feels.

9. When Dads Don’t Grow Up by Marjorie Blain Parker- I know all the mothers that are reading this are like “YES!”. This is an awesome book about how well dads are able to relate to their children from rolling around in leaves to drinking their weight in chocolate milk. Dads don’t grow up and that’s why the kids love them.

10. Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin- These are not your average dragons. These guys love delicious tacos as long as they don’t have…

11. Fancy Nancy Series by Jane O’Connor- Miss Nancy is the fanciest of fancy. She dresses in fancy clothes. Uses fancy words (but always provides her readers with the meanings), and eats the fanciest foods. This is the ultimate girly girl picture book series.

12. Pinkalicious by Victoria Kann- Pinkalicious is a series of “licious” books that are as sweet as they sound. The fun loving main character gets into all sorts of mischief.

13. Stephanie’s Ponytail by Robert Munsch- This is a classic that I remember from my childhood. It is all about being original and your one of a kind self.

14. On the Night You Were Born by Nancy Tillman- Nancy Tillman is well known for her heartfelt children’s books. They read much like poems and this one is no exception.

15. Give A series by Laura Numeroff- With one thing leading to another and another after that, the give a series is a whirlwind of a domino effect.

16. Monsters Love New Colors by Mike Austin- Monsters are wild little creatures that are obsessed with explosive colors. The illustrations are full of colors and completely captivating for any kid!

17. Zombielina by Kristin Crow- Zombielina is a living dead dancing ballerina. While her limbs are held together by an exposed sewing job, it doesn’t stop her from dancing her beat-less heart out.

18. Boss Baby by Maria Frazee- Every parent has felt like this. The baby is the boss and we are simply the loyal employees.

19. I’m Bored by Michael Ian Black- How many times have you heard this or have said this as kids? Well, the little girl in this book realizes how grand her imagination can be even during the most boring times.

20. Press Here by Herve Tullet- Talk about interactive imagination! The book is so simple but becomes so grand when children use a bit of their imagination. It is truly magical.

21. Blue Bird by Bob Staake- Although this book does not have words, the imagery is enough to carry the entire story. It is sweet and sad but well worth a read for children at any age.

22. Cranky Doodle by Tom Angleberger- All kids, and most adults, have felt like this main character. He doesn’t want to do a thing and everything is making him cranky. Sounds about right.

23. Monster, Be Good! by Natalie Marshall- The monsters in this book are not only tamable but they are super cute. If a monster is being scary, you are the one in charge and just have to tell it to be good!

24. That’s Not A Good Idea by Mo Willems- Another Mo book that I absolutely love. This is a modern take on the classic sly wolf  in the forest story. The lady duck in this story, however, is just a bit more clever than the wolf has anticipated.

25. Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker- When bed time is near and your truck loving little guy wants to say goodnight to his favorite cars, trucks, and diggers, this book is perfect.

26. Dinosaurs Love Underpants by Claire Freedman- These wild dinos and crazy cave men will take your kid on a silly underpants filled adventure perfect for a midday story time.

27. The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle- I remember reading this book as a child and it has become a staple in almost all book collections.

28. Click Clack Moo by Doreen Cronin- The cows in this picture book are far from your average friendly farmhouse pals. They not only moo, but they have demands that they neatly type out. By the end of the book, other farm animals have a thing or two to request.

29. I Dare You Not To Yawn by Helene Boudreau- By the end of this book, your little one will not be the only one yawning. The kid in this book is attempting the same bed time trick that my little guy tries every night– to not yawn and eventually drift off to sleep.

30. Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown- Another absolute classic that is essential in any child’s first library. This simple story is the perfect length for bedtime.

31. Do Unto Otters by Laurie Keller- Looking for a book all about manners and how important they are? Well here it is and it is so cute that your child will not feel like they are getting a boring sit down lecture about shaking hands and saying thank you.

32. The Monster Who Lost His Mean by Tiffany Strelitz- The little monster in this book has lost his ability to be mean. Of course this prompts his fellow monsters to tease him and make him feel completely awful until he meets some pretty cool human kids that teach him something better than being mean.

33. Tea Rex by Molly Idle- This is such an adorable book and the fact that the huge T-Rex is sitting at an itty bitty table drinking out of an itty bitty tea cup makes it irresistible. Perfect blend of girly and dino fun.

34. Mustache Baby by Bridget Heos- Some babies are born with a ton of hair while others are born as bald as the day is long. This little guy is born with stylin’ stache that only gets crazier as he gets older.

35. Chicken Soup & Rice by Maurice Sendak- This is a teeny book of short poems that is perfect for the cold season. Mmm, chicken soup and rice sounds yummy right about now.

36. Chamelia & The New Kid by Ethan Long- This chameleon is not one to blend in as her name would imply. She likes to stand out and get noticed but when the new kid shows up she starts to feel like just another chameleon.

37. Les Petite Fairy Tales by Trixie Belle and Melissa Caruso-Scott- This collection takes longer fairy tales like the Beauty and the Beast and shortens them into wordless board books that let the story-teller and little listeners use their own creativity to fill in the story line.

38. The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes by Mark Pett- Beatrice Bottemwell is perfect at everything that she does. Making mistakes has never been a problem for her. Nope, not Beatrice. Until the day she makes a mistake!

39. Ice Cream, I Scream by Amy Krouse Rosenthal- Ice Cream and I Scream sound alike but are totally different. Enter the wondreful world of words and how interesting they really can be.

40. Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters by John Steptoe- This is a classic African tale of a king with 2 beautiful daughters. They both are faced with a chance to be selfless or selfish and must come to terms with whatever happens due to their decisions.

41. The True Story Of The 3 Little Pigs by John Scieszka- We all know the story of the 3 little pigs and the wolf who huffed and puffed. But what about the story from the perspective of the wolf? What about his thoughts and feelings? Maybe he just had a cold?

42. Bully by Laura Vaccaro Seeger – Bullying is a very serious problem that has grown more serious over the pass couple of years. This book takes a simple and literal approach to bullying. It is not only simple for children to understand but it is a tool  that makes it simple for parents, teachers, and caregivers to explain bullying.

43. Diary Of A Worm by Doreen Cronin- Worms have more to think about than a kid would think. Really, this kid worm is just like your kid. He plays with his friends, spends time with his family, and eats plenty of dirt!

44. I’ll Teach My Dog 100 Words by Michael K. Frith- The kid in this book promises he will teach his dog 100 words. He will learn all sorts of things but it’s when exactly this will happen that makes all the difference.

45. Itsy Mitsy Runs Away by Elanna Allen- Little Itsy wants to run away and her dad is totally cool with that. But, being the concerned dad that he is, he wants to make sure she has everything that she needs for her trip.

What is your favorite picture book from childhood or one that you want to read your little tot?

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