I have pretty strict standards about children’s books–they should move slowly, not contain a lot of exclamation points, mostly take place outdoors in nature, be well-written, and, finally, feature adults who are worthy of emulation (except of course, the archetypal “bad” characters: evil kings, witches, mischievous trolls etc.). While this approach requires more groundwork in picking books, the pay-off is having books that support your children’s growth, are in line with your values, and promote a lifelong love of, and respect for, good literature.

I also like reading seasonally relevant books– this supports a sense of the rhythm of the year and pulling out “old friend books” as their season comes around each year is a true simple delight.

Here are some of my favorite Summer, or all-season, children’s books:
For the Very Young:
• Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey
• Jamberry by Bruce Degen
• Time for Bed by Mem Fox
• Little Bear by Elsa Holmelund Minarik
• Good Dog, Carl by Alexandra Day
• Little Gorilla by Ruth Bornstein

For a Little Older:
• Auntie Yang’s Great Soybean Picnic by Ginnie Lo
• Emmett’s Pig by Mary Stolz
• Hedgie’s Surprise by Jan Brett
• Bun Bun Button by Patricia Polacco

Please share your favorites in the Comments!