2010 Holiday Gift Guide – Best Books for Kids

So many wonderful books this year, it was hard to pick. Books make the best gifts for the holidays so scroll down to find my recommendations for the best books for kids. I hope your children will love, love, love these books for gifts.

For buying information, click on the publisher or the book’s cover. (P.S. I’m NOT an Amazon affiliate.)

The Butt Book | $12.23 | Ages 4 – 8


Tall butts, short butts, round butts, flat butts. Butts on mummies and butts on mommies. Butts on giraffes and elephants and dogs and… FISH?A hilarious tribute to backsides, rumps, tushies, keisters, heinies, and derrieres. Dozens of funny rhymes and pages of laugh-out-loud pictures pay homage to a body part that keeps kids and grown-ups giggling with glee. Bloomsbury Kids
Poke-A-Dot! 10 Little Monkeys | $12.95 | Ages 2 – 6

These fun, tactile books help kids learn to count without losing count! Raised buttons pop in on every page so kids can press them as they count. With ten spreads and 30 poke-able poppin’ dots, this book is hands-on, minds-on fun!

What’s more fun than a barrel of monkeys? How about a house full of ’em? Kids will love poking the dots and hearing them pop as they learn to count down from ten in the favorite childhood rhyme “Ten Little Monkeys.”

Innovative Kids
My Little Pink Princess Purse | $13.59 | Ages 4 – 8

Everything a little girl needs to go to the ball in a charming novelty book from the bestselling creator of My Little Red Fire Truck. With 6 lift-up tabs, an erasable writing slab, a quill pen, a handheld mirror, an elegant fan, 4 scratch-and-sniff perfumes, rose-colored glasses, and a sapphire tiara, this book includes hours of dress-up fun for princesses everywhere!

Simon and Schuster

Art and Max $10.21 Ages 4 – 9

The beauty of the picture book is multi-dimensional. First, the artistry of the illustrations will amaze you. But, this is no surprise to those of you who know that Wiesner is a three time Caldecott award winner for his illustrations. Second, the story is fun – and we empathize with Max as he creates disaster after disaster, all with the best of intentions. Third, the symbolism will keep you thinking. Is this a larger metaphor for what is art? Is there one way to create art?

Clarion Books

How Big is a Lion | $10.17 | Ages 4 – 8

Read and learn math. Kids measure the folk art illustrations with the attached wooden ruler.

Workman Publishing

The Robot Book |  $11.55 | Ages 4 – 8

This robot has two eyes, two arms, and two legs, but what really makes him tick? Inside The Robot Book, Heather Brown answers that question within an interactive story that features actual working–and moving–parts. Gears and cogs are mounted on each illustration to keep little fingers and imaginations engaged.

Accord Publishing

green start™ little panda storybook and plush box set | $9.99 | Ages 2 +

Huggable, snuggable, 100% earth-friendly, plush animal and an illustrated storybook. Read the book to learn all about what it’s like to be a panda living in China.

Innovative Kids

Balloon Toons Rick and Rack | $9.34 | Ages 4 – 8

Best-selling author/illustrator Ethan Long makes his Balloon Toons debut with the story of Rick & Rack, two friends who embark on three hilarious (mis)adventures in the great outdoors. Blue Apple Books
Sugar and Spice Fashion Girls Around the World | $15.99 | Ages 4 – 8

Join Sugar and Spice as they head around the world in search of international fashion from ten different countries, learn how to say ‘hello’ in ten languages, and dress up Sugar and Spice in hundreds of outfit combinations. Dolls and magnetic clothing come ready to play and store easily at the back of the book.

Innovative Kids

Max Goes to the Moon | $12.71 | Ages 4 – 8

Max Goes to The Moon tells the story of how Max the dog and a young girl named Tori undertake a quest to make the first trip to the Moon since the Apollo era. Their trip proves so inspiring to people back on Earth that the nations of the world join together to build a great Moon colony, complete with a university and an astronomical observatory.

Jeffrey Bennett

Here Comes the Big Mean Dust Bunny | $9.95 | Ages 4 – 8

The dust bunnies are back to play the rhyming game with a big, mean dust bully.  But this hilarious story still ends with…smiles! Beach Lane Books
Little Librarian | $19.99 | Ages 4+

Little Librarian will provide book lovers with everything they need to transform their book collection into a library. Kids can practice the important skills of organizing, sharing, borrowing, and returning. Book pockets, check out cards, library cards and bookmarks are just like the ones from a real library. Little Librarians will issue overdue notices and awards.

Little Librarian

Sticker Dressing Knights | Ages 5+ | $8.99

Boys everywhere will enjoy preparing the knights for battle, jousting tournaments and hunting in each historically accurate scene.


Sticker Dolly Dressing Fashion Long Ago | Ages 4 + | $8.99

See how clothes have changed over time, from togas in Ancient Rome to miniskirts of the 1960’s. Use the stickers to dress the dolls in fashions through the ages.


Doyle and Fossey, Science Detectives The Case of the Terrible T.rex | $6.95 | Ages 8 – 12


Doyle and Fossey, science detectives, are on the case again-and this time they’re investigating werewolves on Waxberry Hill, a perilous picnic, a fiesta fiasco, and a dino-disaster…involving a T. rex! Kids will learn all about pressure on the Earth’s core, how pollution affects ecology, and more. Plus, budding scientists can try actual experiments!


Ivy and Bean: What’s the Big Idea? | $10.19 |  Ages 6 – 12

It’s the Science Fair, and the second grade is all over it! Some kids are making man-eating robots. Some kids are holding their breath for a very, very long time. Some kids are doing interesting things with vacuum cleaners. The theme, obviously, is global warming. But what should Ivy and Bean do? Something involving explosions? Or ropes? Something with ice cubes? Or maybe . . . maybe something different.

Chronicle Books

The Lost Hero | $10.25 | Ages 9 – 12

Jason has a problem. He doesn’t remember anything before waking up on a school bus holding hands with a girl. Apparently she’s his girlfriend Piper, his best friend is a kid named Leo, and they’re all students in the Wilderness School, a boarding school for “bad kids.” What he did to end up here, Jason has no idea—except that everything seems very wrong.

Hyperion Book

Word After Word After Word |  $10.19 |  Ages 9 – 12

Ms. Mirabel, a guest author, brings magical words and a whole new way of seeing the world to the class. She tells them that writing can change our lives and connect us to our own stories—word after word after word

Katherine Tegen Books

SPHDZ Book #1! (Spaceheadz) | $10.19 | Ages 9 – 12

Michael K. just started fifth grade at a new school. As if that wasn’t hard enough, the kids he seems to have made friends with apparently aren’t kids at all. They are aliens. Real aliens who have invaded our planet in the form of school children and a hamster. They have a mission to complete: to convince 3,140,001 kids to BE SPHDZ. But with a hamster as their leader, “kids” who talk like walking advertisements, and Michael K as their first convert, will the SPHDZ be able to keep their cover and pull off their assignment?

Simon and Schuster

The Night Fairy | $11.55 |Ages 7 – 9

Flora, as a young fairy loses her wings to an over enthusiastic bat, who didn’t realize she wasn’t a moth. She bitterly resigns herself to living during the day and finding other animals to obey her commands. When Flora has the choice to save a hummingbird, even though the hummingbird won’t promise to obey her, Flora realizes that it is within her power to forgive, be compassionate, and be brave.


Beautiful Oops | $8.60 | All Ages

Hooray for mistakes! A mistake is an adventure in creativity, a portal of discovery. A spill doesn’t ruin a drawing—not when it becomes the shape of a goofy animal. And an accidental tear in your paper? Don’t be upset about it when you can turn it into the roaring mouth of an alligator.


Only Girls Allowed |  $6.99  | Ages 9 – 12

Welcome to the Pink Locker Society. Membership is a high honor, but Jemma and her two best friends can’t tell anyone about their secret office, the work they do, or how they always manage to skip study hall. Behind pink doors, the trio of teens (plus Bet, the new girl) have been asked to take on a mysterious mission at Margaret Simon Middle School. They’re supposed to help other girls by answering their questions about the PBBs.* Can Jemma, Piper, Kate, and Bet think fast and think pink?

St. Martin’s Press

The Comet’s Curse Book #1 (#2 & #3 available) | $6.99 | Ages 12 +

When Earth passes through the tail of a comet and a deadly illness sweeps the globe, only the young are immune. With time running out on the human race, it’s up to a team of 251 teenagers — and a narrator unlike any you’ve ever seen — to set sail for a distant solar system. They’re mankind’s last hope… but are they enough?


The Ruby Notebook | $11.55 | Ages 12 +

In this companion to The Indigo Notebook, Zeeta continues her adventures in the southern French town of Aix-en-Provence, where she encounters captivating street performers, age-old secrets, and mysteries of love. Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Bamboo People | $11.55 | Ages 12 +

This coming-of-age novel takes place against the political and military backdrop of modern-day Burma. Narrated by two fifteen-year-old boys on opposing sides of the conflict between the Burmese government and the Karenni, one of the many ethnic minorities in Burma, Bamboo People explores the nature of violence, power, and prejudice.


Please Ignore Vera Dietz| $11.55 | Ages 12 +

Vera’s spent her whole life secretly in love with her best friend, Charlie Kahn. And over the years she’s kept a lot of his secrets. Even after he betrayed her. Even after he ruined everything.So when Charlie dies in dark circumstances, Vera knows a lot more than anyone—the kids at school, his family, even the police. But will she emerge to clear his name? Does she even want to? Knopf


Pete the Cat | $11.55 | 4 – 8 

Groove to this singable, rhyming tale of Pete the Cat who doesn’t worry when his white shoes change colors, “Goodness No!” Harper Collins
Search for WondLa | $12.23 | 9 +

Eva Nine, a 12-year old, raised by a robot named Muthr underground. Eva Nine has never met other humans and she both wants to meet them and to go above ground. Simon and Schuster
The Kneebone Boy | $11.55 | 9 +

The three Hardscrabble children search for their lost mother, find an unknown aunt, and discover both the true identity of the Kneebone Boy and the reason for their mother’s disappearance.

Feiwel & Friends

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  1. Sophie says

    Finance for Kidz series of children’s books by Prof Dheeriya…The only set of books that pays back throughout your child’s life million times over…

  2. M Macchia says

    Art & Max is amazing! The illustrations are just beautiful. I see it serving as a source of inspiration for many different children.

  3. Graham Nolan says

    I had been researching gifts that are fun, interactive, and “trick them into learning”. After much research I found Encyclopedia Britannica’s Interactive Science Library – my daughter LOVES it as does my son. Check it out for your list – found it at Sam’s Club 😉

  4. says

    These are all great stories! A Story Before Bed (http:\\www.astorybeforebed.com) has some great stories and their service allows you to record yourself reading a story and then send it to your favorite little one to watch or read along with from the computer, iphone or ipad. They’re also giving away free personalized stories read by Santa! Just sign up at http:\\www.astorybeforebed.com/santa

    Enjoy your holiday season! :)

  5. says

    Excellent list! I want The Robot Book…uhmm I mean for my kids of course 😉 Please Ignore Vera Dietz is another one I’ve heard nothing but positive things about.


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