Books for the holidays: Numerous books would make great stocking stuffers for young audiences

Published: Tuesday, Dec. 11 2012 4:55 p.m. MST

Books for young readers are wonderful stocking stuffers. They're gifts that won’t break (as many toys do) and continue to maintain interest long after the new year. Here are reminders about buying books for all kinds of readers with suggested titles for year-round enjoyment in each category.

Books for the youngest readers


• Is the book well-constructed and durable? It must survive “tastes” and even bedtime hugs.

• Is the story related to the child’s level and immediate life?

Suggested titles:

• Nursery Rhymes, ABC books, clapping and singing rhymes

• "Have You Seen Duck?" by Janet A. Holmes, illustrated by Jonathan Bentley (ages 3 and up)

• “Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!” by Mo Willems (ages 2 and up)

• “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom,” by Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault, illustrated by Lois Ehlert (ages 2 and up)

• “1, 2, 3,” by Tana Hoban (ages 1 and up)

Picture books for all ages


• Does the book have child appeal appropriate for intended age?

• Are the characters likable?

• Are the illustrations clear and attractive?

Suggested titles:

• “How to Babysit a Grandpa,” by Jean Reagan, illustrated by Lee Wildish

• “Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs,” by Mo Willems

• “Blueberries for Sal,” by Robert McCloskey

• “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie,” by Laura Numeroff

• “The Bear in the Book,” by Kate Banks, illustrated by Georg Hallensleben

• “Olivia and the Fairy Princesses,” by Ian Falconer

• “Lemonade in Winter: A Book About Two Kids Counting Money,” by Emily Jenkins, illustrated by G. Brian Karas



• Is this one that the child has put on a “I’d-like” list?

• Is the story original? (Your childhood favorite may not be theirs!)

• Is the reading ability within the skill/interest of the child?

• When in doubt about a book, give a gift card or an invitation for a shopping trip to a bookstore.

Suggested titles:

• “Amelia Bedelia,” by Peggy Parish (grades 1-3)

• “The Boxcar Children Beginning: The Aldens of Fair Meadow Farm,” by Patricia MacLachlan, illustrated by Tim Jessell (grades 3-7)

• "Sarah, Plain and Tall,” by Patricia MacLachlan (grades 2-4)

• “The Raven Boys,” by Maggie Stiefvater (grades 6-8)

• “Number the Stars,” by Lois Lowry (grades 4-6)

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