Tuesday’s Tots: My Top Not-Quite-100 Children’s Books… Part 1

My original title for this post was My Top Not-Quite-100 Children’s Books That you may or may not have heard of That Should Be on Your Shelf or Bought for your niece/nephew/grandchild/any child in your life or even for yourself because children’s books aren’t just for children as evidenced by my growing collection of Mo Willems’ books.

Since that was too long – Not-Quite-100 will have to do.

I’m going to try and resist putting staples on this. Goodnight Moon, The Cat in the Hat, Runaway Bunny and the like. In the countless homes-with-tots I’ve entered, these are ALWAYS there. And there are so many other books out there that are just SO good for the grownup reader that will likely memorize said book and the tiny human that will request it over and over and over again.

Without further ado and in no particular order whatsoever

Shark vs. Train by  Chris Barton and Tom Lichtenheldsharktrain

This book was a favorite with one of my tots. See, Shark and Train are VERY competitive and challenge the other to see who’s best at important things like, selling lemonade or being quiet in a library. But as the challenges intensify and become more and more ridiculous, they (hilariously) realize things are getting out of hand. The illustrations are so amazing and just add to the antics. Pay close attention to the last shark vs. train challenge, grownups. It’s a treat.

howtobabyHow to Be a Baby by Me, the Big Sister by Sally Lloyd Jones and Sue Heap

If you’re on the fence about having a second child, this book should help push you in that direction. It’s that CUTE. As a big sister myself, I remember thinking and feeling all these ways about the new tot. I probably couldn’t have articulated them this well but here they are. It’s less of a what-a-joy-it-will-be -to-share-mommy/daddy-with-a-tiny-screaming-burrito-sized-human and more of a-how-cool-will-you-look-in-comparison-to-said-burrito. I wish this book had been around 18 years ago.



My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss, Steve Johnson and Lou Fanchermanycolor

Two books down and already a Dr. Seuss book?! In my defense, I only discovered this book last year. There are no foxes in socks or questionable looking cold cuts and eggs here. My Many Colored Days is serious about the many moods we can be in and their corresponding colors.




wearingthatYou’re Wearing THAT to School? by Lynn Plourde and Sue Cornelison

For those first day of school jitters. Penelope is SO excited for her first day of school and her well-meaning friend, Tiny, tries to help Penelope blend in so the other kids won’t make fun of her. It sounds like heavy subject matter but Lynn and Sue manage to keep it light and interesting.





Bedtime for Mommy  by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and LeUyen Phambedtimemommy

Apologies if your tot rushes you to bed at 7pm, way before any of the juicy 10pm shows come on after reading this precious book. In it, a little girl takes the reins on bedtime, using her special mommy-phrases.




loathe youI Loathe You by David Slonim

I’m not a huge fan of super-smushy books about love and bonding and all that (the exception being I’ll Love You Forever.  I cry every time.) I promise I’m no cynic/horrible person – I just really love funny. So this gem caught my eye because of its odd title. Okay, it’s a book about love, but in the monster-kind-of-way.

I loathe you more than tooth decay
More than blizzard snow in May
More than garbage in a dump
More than splinters in my rump
No matter what, through thick and thin, I loathe you there and back again! 

Mushy, sans the mush but with a dash of trash. My kind of book.


Have any favorites?



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