A PERFECT LITERARY CHECKLIST FOR CHILDREN OF ALL AGES

STORY: Sue Rodman

One of the easiest gifts an adult can give a child is to read to them. It’s an activity that can be done as soon as they’re born and can continue long past the time they’re old enough to read themselves. According to a Kids & Family Reading Report by Scholastic, the majority of both kids and parents enjoy read-aloud time together. To help parents and caregivers discover books youngsters will enjoy hearing, and that the adults will enjoy reading too, we’ve put together this list with the help of some Buckhead parents.

Newborn to age 3

Board books are the best choice for this age group, as they can usually turn the chunky pages easily and a little gnawing doesn’t hurt the book. You can find countless popular children’s books in board form, but here are a few newer classics.

1. Hi-Five Animals! by Ross Burach
2. Mr. Bear’s ABC by Virginie Aracil
3. Hungry Bunny by Claudia Rueda
4. Good Night, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann
5. If I Were a Unicorn… by Jellycat

Age 3-6

Children between these ages are generally most interested in picture books. In the Scholastic survey, parents said they enjoy reading Dr. Seuss, Curious George and Goodnight Moon to their children. Here are some other winning picks.

1. Do Not Lick This Book by Idan Ben-Barak
2. Mae Among the Stars by Roda Ahmed
3. Baby Monkey, Private Eye by Brian Selznick and David Serlin
4. The Wonky Donkey by Craig Smith
5. Kipper Story Collection by Mick Inkpen

Age 6-8

Good books or series for youngsters in this age group include Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Magic Tree House, Junie B. Jones and Pete the Cat. Here are more recommendations.

1. Owl Diaries by Rebecca Elliott
2. The Princess in Black by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale
3. Henry and Mudge by Cynthia Rylant
4. I Survived by Lauren Tarshis
5. Dog Man by Dav Pilkey

Age 8-12

This is the age when kids begin to transition to chapter books. Often they get hooked on a particular series, such as Harry Potter, Percy Jackson and Dork Diaries. You might also try these titles.

1. Ranger’s Apprentice by John Flanagan
2. Warriors by Erin Hunter
3. The Secret Series by Pseudonymous Bosch
4. Fablehaven by Brandon Mull
5. How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell Teens

Don’t forget teens.

Although school reading tends to take center stage, a good book can lure them away from the cellphone or video games. You may be familiar with some of these from the movie versions, but others may be welcome surprises.

1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
2. The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
3. Divergent by Veronica Roth
4. The Land of Stories by Chris Colfer
5. Scythe by Neal Shusterman

COMIC BOOKS

Not all kids like to read novels, and that’s OK. Comic books are a great way to entice a reluctant reader. Hart Chamberlain of Oxford Comics, located off Piedmont Road in Buckhead, says to listen to what children already like and match the comic book to their tastes. Here are a few favorite titles Chamberlain suggests.

1. Adventures of the Super Sons by Peter J. Tomasi
2. Zita the Spacegirl by Ben Hatke
3. Bone by Jeff Smith
4. Star Wars: Jedi Academy by Jeffrey Brown
5. Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales by Nathan Hale