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Reading a book is the best part of a bedtime routine for any toddler. This activity strengthens parent-child bonds and helps develop the brain and language skills of your offspring. The choice of a raising book is very important since it should include an entertaining story and great illustrations.
To save your time, BooKKooks offers a list of the top-rated authors and books for toddlers now available for sale on the market. Add these best baby books to your home library!
Top 10 Board Books for Babies
I Love You to the Moon and Back: Cute Baby Book for New Parents
This is a heartwarming story written by the English writer Amelia Hepworth, a mother of a little boy. The story will make your heart skip a beat.
It portrays the daily life and adventures of a mama polar bear and her cub. They climb mountains, splash in the water, play chase, and watch the stars. They show love for each other by hugging and touching noses.
The story is rhymed that makes it simple to read and remember. Your baby will like this sweet and gentle story and the illustrations.
This is a board book meaning that it is tear-resistant.
- Available in a cardboard version
- The pages are thick and durable enough to withstand a toddler’s terrorizing
- A good option if your baby is teething
- Suitable for baby shower
- The style may seem monochromatic in color
- The book is rather small
Baby Shark: Awesome Sound Book
This is a fantastic board book created by Pinkfong, a famous brand of the South Korean educational company SmartStudy. The sound book includes 10 magical songs so that kids can sing along. Each page contains a new song with lovely characters that will bring a lot of fun for your child. “Baby Shark” is the most famous song with 4 billion views on YouTube.
The singing book is specially designed for small hands and has a comfortable grip. The built-in speaker delivers clear sounds that are not louder than 83 dB. The soft buttons are easy to press. This music book runs on two AAA batteries.
- Filled with colorful illustrations
- The rounded edges for safe use
- The ON/OFF switch is located at the back cover to protect young users
- The hard pages don’t tear
- There is no volume option
- The pages are not too thick and bendable
First 100 Words: Perfect Educational Book
“First 100 words” is written by Roger Priddy, an English author (and a parent of 3 kids) famous for creating informative and entertaining books for young learners.
This board book is made of 100% polyurethane foam, which is sturdy enough to stand up to toddler’s abuse. Actually, it belongs to a series of books along with “First 100 numbers/animals/Bible words” and others. This edition features 100 essential words that are simple enough to discover and learn. The bright pictures help babies recognize and understand the items. It is also recommended for kids with autism to work on their speech development.
- Compact enough to fit into a diaper bag
- The pages are padded and soft to touch
- Available in a hardcover
- Uses photographs instead of illustrations
- Some words are difficult to teach for early talkers
- The book has a duplicate page
Peek-A Who: Great Lift-the-Flap Book
This is a very famous board book created by the U.S. writer and illustrator Nina Laden. The book features simple text, which easily rhymes, and peek-a-boo cutouts. This is a guessing game with the word “Peek” on the left page and a die-cut window on the right page with a visual clue to the rhymes. The colorful pictures make kids anticipate which word is hidden.
The plot of the book is not exceptional, but kids adore it, especially the last page with the reflective surface.
- Fun for young learners
- The high contrast between bright colors and black outlines will enchant any toddler
- The perfect size to hold
- Suitable for baby showers
- The book lacks quality control: the pages are easily bendable
- The “mirror” page has scratches
Baby Touch and Feel (Animals)
This board book is released by DK Children, the UK founded publisher that creates non-fiction content for children and adults. Its progressive books are published in more than 60 languages in over 100 countries.
This bestselling sensory book (with more than 1 million copies sold) is filled with animal photographs that are textured. Tiny fingers can explore various textures like leather or wool. In addition, each page has glitter or foil able to hold a toddler’s attention as well. This helps develop fine motor skills and build an early language foundation. Kittens, puppies, bunnies, and other animals throughout the pages are so cute that young readers will adore them.
- Improves picture-and-word association
- The series includes more than 30 books that help explore something new
- Perfect size for small hands
- The cover can withstand throwing, biting and can be easily wiped off
- The parts with textures are too small
- Some animals don’t have touch and feel elements
Look, Look: Cool High Contrast Book
“Look, Look” is a great variant if you are searching for the first book for a newborn. The author of this board book is Peter Linenthal, the U.S. artist and photographer who has taught art in elementary school for 20 years.
The book contains large black and white pictures. Since it is difficult for infants to distinguish and focus on certain images, this high contrast art stimulates their brain development and eye movement. This is an immediate hit with babies from several months old that will mesmerize them. It can be a good way to distract them during outfit and diaper changes.
The book is extremely popular and a must-have for parents.
- The pages are sturdy and chewable
- The simplistic images are cool and eye-catching
- Suitable for baby showers
- The quality of the pages is high
- The black and white patterns don’t appeal to older kids who like colorful pictures
- Some parents find the characters scary-looking
On the Night You Were Born Book
The book was self-published by Nancy Tillman in 2005 and became a New York Times bestseller. In 2010 it was released in a board book format.
The story is a sentimental message of love, which shows that every child is unique and valued. This is a wonderful book for expecting parents that portrays the way of how people feel when their kids enter the world.
The text sits on white pages opposite large colored illustrations that make the story memorable. The image of the moon appears in all pictures. The story is a mixture of rhymes and prose. The text is so touching that it makes most people cry.
- Can be taken to a baby shower
- Arresting pictures and story
- Interesting for children of any age
- The rhythm of the text is very soothing
- This is an abridged edition of a cardboard book with a shorter text
- The illustrations are too mature for infants, and some parents find them bizarre
Alphablock: Good for Little Hands
“Alphablock” is an award winning board book created by Christopher Franceschelli. The pages of this ABC book are cut in the shape of uppercase letters. The peek-through game helps children see an image of a letter and guess a word before turning the page and discovering an item that starts with the given letter.
The book is nicely animated, and its retro-style illustrations are very bright. Along with memorizing letters, kids physically interact with them learning their curves and angles.
“Countablock” and “Dinoblock” are also available from these authors.
- Fun for little ones to interact with the alphabet
- Develops tactile senses
- The letters are big enough
- The size is perfect for little hands
- The pages are thinner than in traditional board books, and the cutout letters can be torn out
- Some words given in the book are not commonly used by kids (like a juggler, underwear, and zoom)
Disney Peek-a-Boo Winnie the Pooh: Top Durable Book for Babies
This is a brilliant lift-the-flap board book for babies with colorful illustrations and familiar Disney characters. Winnie the Pooh and his friends are hiding among the book pages and will keep your child engaged for hours. It is sold as a part of a “Winnie the Pooh” series of books.
For adults, it may not seem the greatest work of literature, but youngsters adore this cute story. The happy faces of the characters make babies smile each time they see them.
The “Pick-a-boo” tabs are not flimsy, and kids can explore the book by throwing and mouthing.
- The pages are extra-thick and sturdy
- Bright pictures that are easy to figure out for babies
- The words are simple and repetitive
- A unisex baby book
- Contains only 10 pages
ABC I Love You: Great Book About Parents Love
“ABC I Love You” is written by P. K. Hallinan who has been writing and illustrating books for 40 years. He is an author of more than 100 books with 9 million copies sold.
This board book describes parents’ love for a child and contains words that start with A, B, and C. The characters depicted in the book are a little boy and a girl.
The book teaches great things, and poetry is sentimental and catchy. The messages are geared towards the Christian community and grounded on faith. This is a good variant to be used as a bedtime book.
- The rhyming verses are easy to memorize
- A good gift idea on Valentine’s day for kids
- Worth the money and read
- Nice-looking illustrations
- The book doesn’t encompass the entire alphabet but only 3 first letters
Best Baby Hardcover Books: Rated List and Reviews
The Wonderful Things You Will Be: Good Baby Picture Book
This masterpiece created by Emily Winfield Martin is an admission of parents’ love for their baby. This eternal care and love will support toddlers throughout all their lives until they are grownups.
Emily is not just a writer but also an illustrator of her books. The artwork of the book is amazing, and the pictures of kids in costumes are adorable.
The story is very encouraging and includes supportive statements like “I know you will be clever/kind/brave” and others. It has received thousands of positive reviews and is a must-have for any parent.
- The hardcover book has durable pages and is a good gift for a baby shower
- The kids will be captivated by the magical images on each page
- Great for all ages
- Promotes a good self-image
- Some readers complain that children in the book don’t smile
The Very Hungry Caterpillar: Classic Book for Babies
The world of Eric Carle (a former graphic designer) is very recognizable because the author creates books as toys that can be read. Kids adore his illustrations, cheerful images, and die-cut pages. Can you imagine that “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” is sold every minute somewhere in the world?
The story portrays a very hungry caterpillar baby just hatched out of an egg. He starts searching for food and eats more and more each day. When full, he makes a cocoon and goes to sleep in order to transform into a butterfly one day. The book ends in a double-page picture of a gorgeous butterfly.
- Famous around the world, the book is translated into 25 languages
- The original format of the book
- Sturdy pages with vibrant pictures
- Extremely fun for young readers
- This edition doesn’t have pages cut or holes punched to show that the caterpillar eats through the food
Goodnight Moon: Best for Baby Shower
“Goodnight Moon” along with many other beloved stories of Margaret Wise Brown is the classics of children’s literature. The author is truly conveying a child’s perspective of the world. Despite the fact that the writer died more than 45 years ago, her books are still popular.
This is a time-honored story about a little bunny, who is going to sleep and wishing good night to everything around him. The book combines lulling pictures and quiet poetry, which makes it perfect for bedtime reading.
- The story is calming indeed
- A great size for kids
- Toddlers are fascinated by this simple story
- Durable thanks to a hard cover
- Some readers don’t like that the author jumps from color to white pictures
Guess How Much I Love You
The book was written many years ago by Sam McBratney, an author from Ireland, and became very popular. “How Much I Love You” was translated into 57 languages with 47 million copies sold.
The story describes Little Nutbrown Hare and Big Nutbrown Hare, who try to measure love saying how much they love each other. Beautifully rendered in watercolors, the book shows deep bonds between a parent and a child. It features earthy shades of soft brown and gray working as a visually soothing effect ideal for sleep.
- A great baby shower gift
- The illustrations are priceless
- A good sleepy-time book
- It is often sold with a matching soft toy
- This is a hardcover, but the pages are flimsy
The Going to Bed Book: Good for Baby Sleep
The book is written by the famous American children’s author and cartoonist Sandra Boynton. This is a classic bedtime story, which persuades kids that getting ready for sleep has tons of fun. It describes a joyful group of animals on a boat, which scrub in a tub and brush teeth.
Thanks to the rhyming and rhythmic repetition of some words and funny pictures, the story turns a regular routine before going to bed into something interesting that can be repeated after the animals.
- A charming story that can be added to a goodnight list
- The pictures are appealing to the eye
- The shape is perfect for small hands to manipulate the pages
- The absurdity of some moments in the story will entertain older readers as well
- Exercising before going to bed seems a bit weird
- The fact that all animals bathe together in one tub looks odd
Dear Zoo: Funniest Book for Babies
“Dear Zoo” is written by Rod Campbell and features simple text with repeating phrases that are ideal for young readers. The protagonist asks to send him an animal, and each time he discovers which animal is in the cage. When he finds that the animal is too big/tall/scary, he sends it back to the zoo.
The author uses flaps and other elements that make the book interesting for toddlers. They can lift the flaps and find the animal. Kids love a hidden surprise.
- The flaps are great and sturdy: they come in different shapes and open in different directions
- The story is short and keeps toddlers’ attention
- The funniest and easy way to teach animal’s names
- Can be used for a group of kids
- The animal trade described in the book is a hurtful stereotype
365 Bedtime Stories and Rhymes: Top with Nursery Rhymes
This book has been released by the independent publisher Cottage Door Press. It incorporates 365 stories and nursery rhymes from various authors. The collection includes both classic and new stories that let children drift into the magical world. It encompasses stories about children, animals, and favorite fairy-tale characters. The book integrates the works of famous writers and illustrators around the world.
This is a strong and massive edition that will stand the test of time. It comes with a padded cover and has a ribbon bookmark.
- The stories are short and allow parents to read several tales at a time
- Includes multiple fairy-tales in 1 book
- Suitable for kids of different age
- In order to get to 365, the publisher offers some stories that are not good
You Are Special: Good Christian Baby Book
“You Are Special” is written by Max Lucado, who serves as a minister of preaching in Texas. The author describes the life of the Wemmicks, wooden people carved by the woodworker Eli. Each day, they get stickers in a form of gold stars or gray dots. Punchinello is a Wemmick made of rough wood who has lots of gray dots. He feels worthless, and his creator Eli explains to him his true worth.
This story helps parents tell their kids that they all are special and unique before God. It helps raise children’s self-esteem.
- The illustrations are very captivating
- A deep massage is delivered to readers by an easy-to-understand language
- A hardcover version for longevity
- Suitable for all readers even if they are not religious
- The font size is very small
Simple First Words Let’s Talk: Well Made Hardback Baby Book
Written by famous Roger Priddy, this is an awesome beginning book for babies who are learning to speak. The interactive pages of this play-a-sound hardback book show illustrations and names of what these things are. Kids can easily learn by pressing the buttons and matching the pictures with the sounds.
“Simple First Words” comes with large pictures, and the buttons are of good quality. This is a wonderful teaching aid, and pushing the buttons makes children happy each time. The book is very helpful for teaching preschoolers with special needs.
- The words are simple and easy to learn
- Great audio
- Easy to manipulate for toddlers
- An interesting way to develop speech
- When the battery gets low, the book may stop working correctly saying the wrong word
Auntie Loves You by Helen Foster James: Perfect As a Gift
This is not easy to find a unique gift from an aunt for her niece or nephew. The book is the cutest thing that describes a story of love between a little bunny and his aunt. This touching story is complemented by sweet pictures. It is dedicated to boys and girls and will keep their attention.
There is a section where aunts can add a photo and write down a message. This is a quick and captivating book thanks to adorable detailed pictures and rhyming lines. It will bring plenty of memories.
- A special gift idea
- Perfect for bedtime
- Durable pages
- Suitable for a baby shower
- A little expensive
Other Baby Books That Are Worth Your Attention
Interesting Facts About Baby Books
This selection of unknown and fascinating facts gives an insight into the history of some popular kids’ books.
- Theodor Seuss Geisel, published under the name of Dr. Seuss, wrote “Green Eggs” and “Ham” as the result of a bet. The challenge was to write a book using only 50 words. All the words in the book are monosyllabic. The author succeeded and won $50.
- Roger Hargreaves created a well-known character of Mr. Tickle after his son asked him about what a tickle looked like.
- Eric Carle got the idea of creating “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” when he was punching holes in a stack of paper. He thought of a “bookworm”, but his publisher suggested a caterpillar instead.
- Sylvia Plath wrote “The Bed Book”, a book of nonsense poems for kids where she described various kinds of beds.
- Beatrix Potter self-published 250 copies of “The Tale of Peter Rabbit” after the book had been rejected. Now, there are more than 45 million copies sold.
- In 1956, Michael Bond bought “Paddington Bear” and felt sad for it since it was the only toy left unsold on the shop’s shelf on Christmas Eve.
- If an author publishes a children’s book in Norway, the government buys 1,000 copies and distributes them to libraries throughout the country.
Do you know any other unusual facts about your favorite books?
It is very responsible to start your baby’s first library. The first sounds and words infants hear are important and help form their native language. The more stories you will read aloud to your children, the more words they will hear and remember.
This post includes the best classic and new titles tested by parents. With the right choice of literature, it will be easier to grow well-educated citizens. Let them like reading even when they are not able to read.