Suggestions, Please

I was just thinking about how we didn’t have a food for thought post up today when it dawned on me… I should hijack today’s post and ask for your advice!

My daughter is turning the big TWO next month and in preparation of birthday gift buying I’ve been updating her book wish list. I removed some of the more babyish titles on the list and am looking for some slightly more grown up (relatively speaking) ones to add. I’d like to find some that she could grow into but that aren’t too far beyond her level right now. I have lots of favorite booklist resources, so I’ll be scouring those as well, but my favorite way to find books is through personal recommendations.

So, dear readers, what are your favorites books (in all genres) for the 24-36 months age group? Please share them in the comments!

21 thoughts on “Suggestions, Please

  1. This is a very quick top-of-my-head list, but some favorites that leap to mind are:

    More More More Said the Baby
    Caps for Sale
    A VIsitor for Bear
    Daisy Thinks She Is a Baby
    Knuffle Bunny
    the Rosemary Wells Mother Goose books are HUGELY popular with my 2yo right now (and all previous 2yos in the family) 😉

    I am missing some treasures, I know. Might pop back in later!

  2. My daughter is just shy of 3, and some of her favorites are:

    Maurice Sendak’s Nutshell Library
    The Beatrix Potter books
    King Bidgood’s in the Bathtub

    We’ve also been reading the original Winnie the Pooh books together, as well as a beautifully illustrated (though abridged) version of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, illustrated by Christian Birmingham. If it doesn’t seem to blasphemous to you to abridge Narnia, then I highly, highly recommend this one.

    • Thanks, Thea! King Bidgood looks like a fun one, and I’d like to try Maurice Sendak, too. So many good choices!

      Not sure how I feel about an abridged Narnia, but I looked at the book on Amazon and the illustrations really are lovely!

      • I was a bit squeamish about the shortened version of LL&W, but they did a respectful job, I thought (better than the movie, that’s for sure).

        And King Bidgood (by the authors of The Napping House, which is also a favorite of ours) really is excellent. It’s one of my favorites.

        The Maurice Sendak ones have a similar appeal for my daughter as the Potter books: they’re sized for her hands, which makes them immediately endearing, plus they’re fun to read together.

        Happy choosing! Our wishlist is incredibly long as well, and an awful lot of the items on it have come from this website.

  3. Yes, yes yes to Caps for Sale and Knuffle Bunny. They’ve been much loved at our house for awhile now. A few others:

    Pancakes for Breakfast
    Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus
    The Napping House
    Where the Wild Things Are
    Dr Seuss’ ABC

    Have fun! You’ll have to let us know what you wind up choosing…

  4. My two-year-old is turning THREE next month… and these are the stories we’ve read over and over this year (also the same stories his older 2 siblings enjoyed at this age). So here are some tried-and-true Baldwin recommendations:

    Bonjour, Babar!: The Six Unabridged Classics by the Creator of Babar by Jean De Brunhoff

    George and Martha: The Complete Stories of Two Best Friends by James Marshall

    People and Circus! by Peter Spier

    Your Favorite Seuss: A Baker’s Dozen by the One and Only Dr. Seuss

    • Oh, yes, those are all wonderful! It’s so helpful for me to hear what other 2-year-olds enjoy reading. I know of so many wonderful books, but sometimes it’s hard to know when a child is ready for them. I would have thought a bit older for most of the ones you suggested, but now I’m inspired to give them a try!

    • Thanks, Jamie! My daughter loves My First Little House, too. I should get a couple more of those. And I know I have a copy of Blueberries for Sal somewhere…

  5. We also really liked Books That Sing:

    1) My Favorite Things by Richard Rodgers / Oscar Hammerstein Illustrated by Renee Graef
    2) Five Little Ducks by Pam Paparone (Illustrator) (We often sang this in our Pipsqueaks singing class)
    3) Who Built the Ark? By Pam Paparone (illustrator) (Raffi sings this too)
    4) Also any of the Raffi Songs to Read Books: Shake My Sillies Out, Baby Baluga, Everything Grows

    1) All of the My First Little House books Ilustrated by Renee Graef
    2) The Eloise Wilkins Books: We Help Mommy/Daddy, Poems, Wonder of Nature…
    3) Some Tasha Tudor Books: 1 is One, Around the Year, First Delights
    4) Usborne’s The Town Mouse and Country Mouse and other 18 mo+ Picture Book selections
    5) Gerda Muller’s Board Books: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
    6) All of the Alfie Books (Alfie Weather, The Big Outdoors…) and The Alfie and Annie Rose Books (The Alfie and Annie Rose, Rhymes for Annie Rose..) by Shirley Hughes
    7) The Sarah Garland Books: Coming to Tea, Having a Picnic , Eddie’s Garden…
    8) The Big Bear and Little Bear Books
    9) Going on a Bear Hunt, Giraffes Can’t Dance, The Gruffalo

    1) The Owl and The Pussy Cat Illustrated by
    2) Wynken, Blynken and Nod Illustrated by Susan Jeffers (But Johanna Westerman’s Illustrations are nice too but I prefer Jeffers a little more)
    3) Mother Goose Illustrated by Jesse Wilcox Smith or the Original (The Kate Greenaway is nice too, but small: 8×6”)
    4) Any of the Gyo FujiKawa books
    5) A Child’s Garden of Verses Classic Illustrated (or Gyo Fujikaw, or Jessie Wilcox Smith $$$$)
    6) Lavender’s Blue

    1) The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh read by Christopher Plummer (iTunes)
    2) Giraffes Can’t Dance (

  8. Three personal favorites:

    A Special Trade, Sally Wittman
    The Elves and the Shoemaker, Brothers Grimm
    The Emperor’s New Clothes, Hans Christian Andersen

  9. We read The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big Hungry Bear yesterday–an old family favorite here, and the delight of every two-year-old I’ve had–and I came over here to plug all the Don & Audrey Wood books, especially King Bidgood & The Napping House, but I see others have beat me to it. 🙂

    And to revisit Rhyming Dust Bunnies, my current 2yo is so madly in love with it that I might just have to buy a copy to keep. We’ve checked it out of the library umpteen times.

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