Best Children’s Books of All Time

BBC Culture did a survey of critics from around the world about what their favorite children’s book for under ten-year-olds is. The list started at over 150 titles, but was trimmed down to a top 21. Here are the books in order:

Charlotte's Web The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (The Chronicles of Narnia, #1)

1. Charlotte’s Web by EB White

2. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis

3. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

4. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

5. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

6. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery

7. Winnie-the-Pooh by AA Milne

8. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl

9. A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula Le Guin

10. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

11. The Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder

12. The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame

13. From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs Basil E. Frankweiler by EL Koenigsburg

14. The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster

15. His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman

16. Matilda by Roald Dahl

17. Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

18. Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren

19. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

20. Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

21. The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien


Wow, the list certainly skews white and either American or British. I can think of many titles I would love to have seen there, and some that I would remove immediately, like #20.  Ugh.

Review: The Tapper Twins Go to War by Geoff Rodkey

tapper twins go to war

The Tapper Twins Go to War by Geoff Rodkey

Released April 7, 2015.

When siblings go to war, they both end up hurt especially if they happen to be twins! Claudia and Reese are very different from one another, but they are also alike. They both love toaster pastries and that is how the entire war began, when one twin accused the other of stealing their pastry. That was bad enough, but then it escalated quickly at their school cafeteria where Claudia was accused of being the one who farted and got the nickname “Princess Farts-A-Lot.” That led to Claudia trying to get Reese to be called stinky by the others and she put a dead fish in his backpack, perhaps a bit too well hidden. From there though, the war gets really ugly and turns virtual with social media and video games as the battlefields. A modern look at being a sibling and having one enormous fight, online and off.

Rodkey has created a very smart book that captures the digital age and being a tween. The book is in a unique format where Claudia is documenting what had happened during the war with Reese and Reese regularly interjecting his own point of view. The book has photographs, cartoons, and texts between different family members too. The result is a book perfect for reluctant readers who will enjoy the short blocks of text broken regularly with images.

They will also enjoy the humor of the book, including a very nicely done interplay between the two siblings. Their anger at one another and their relationship really works in the book and is life like. The escalating war between the twins is made possible by parents who are tired, inattentive and also lifelike. Their exchanges with one another are equally humorous as the twins’ exchanges are.

Funny and very friendly, this is a book that middle school readers will love. Appropriate for ages 8-12.

Reviewed from digital galley received from Edelweiss and Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.

2015 Independent Bookshop Week Book Awards Shortlist

The shortlist for the 2015 Independent Book Shop Week book awards has been announced. 24 books are on the shortlist for this UK award with 12 in the children’s book category and 12 in picture books. Winners will be announced on June 20th. Here are the shortlisted titles:


The 13-Storey Treehouse Apple and Rain

The 13-Storey Treehouse by Andy Griffiths, illustrated by Terry Denton

Apple and Rain by Sarah Crossan

The Apple Tart of Hope The Farm Beneath the Water (The Secret Hen House Theatre, #2)

The Apple Tart of Hope by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald

The Farm beneath the Water by Helen Peters

Five Children on the Western Front An Island of Our Own

Five Children on the Western Front by Kate Saunders

An Island of Our Own by Sally Nicholls

Itchcraft (Itch, #3) The Lie Tree

Itchcraft by Simon Mayo

The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

Opal Plumstead The Parent Agency

Opal Plumstead by Jacqueline Wilson

The Parent Agency by David Baddiel

Running Girl A Song for Ella Grey

Running Girl by Simon Mason

A Song for Ella Grey by David Almond



Bears Don't Read! Blown Away

Bears Don’t Read by Emma Chichester Clark

Blown Away by Rob Biddulph

 Monsters Love Underpants

Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion by Alex T. Smith

Monsters Love Underpants by Claire Freedman and Ben Cort

The Mouse Who Ate the Moon Never Tickle a Tiger

The Mouse Who Ate the Moon by Petr Horacek

Never Tickle a Tiger by Pamela Butchart and Marc Boutavant

Shh! We Have a Plan 

Shh! We Have a Plan by Chris Haughton

The Something by Rebecca Cobb

 A Walk in Paris

Use Your Imagination by Nicola O’Byrne

A Walk in Paris by Salvatore Rubbino

Wanted! Ralfy Rabbit, Book Burglar 19324343

Wanted! Ralfy Rabbit, Book Burglar by Emily Mackenzie

The Way to the Zoo by John Burningham