Adventure, delightful humor, and strong friendship bonds marked the story of prolific Swedish writer Astrid Lindgren.
Over the course of her career, Astrid crafted a score of classic and beloved children’s stories. From Pippi Longstocking to Emil of Lönneberga, Lindgren created fantastic worlds in which children defied norms and became wholly themselves. Discover 20 more children’s authors who continued the adventure.
Much like the titular character in his classic tale, Charlotte’s Web, E.B. White spun memorable and loving children’s stories with cross-generational appeal.
Readers who enjoy Lindgren’s tender approach to storytelling will value the warm messages of Charlotte’s web and find themselves rooting for the underdog (or pig?) in Wilbur, the runt of his litter of piglets.
Check out the story for yourself here.
Australian writer P.L. Travers brought magic into the home with her whimsical children’s series, Mary Poppins. Before Disney created its hit movie in 1964, Travers debuted the titular character in 1934, and since then, Mary Poppins has captured hearts on the page and on-screen.
The East wind blew Mary Poppins into London, and readers could follow her comings, goings, and all the shenanigans in-between. Children will be delighted with the tale’s magic and mayhem, and might find themselves wishing for their own magical nanny.
Pick up your copy here.
American writer Madeleine L’Engle believed in the power of a child’s open mind — a fact reflected in her sweeping fantasy novel, A Wrinkle In Time.
A Wrinkle in Time follows timid protagonist Meg as she adventures through time, space, and galaxies to rescue her missing father. As Meg encounters the impossible, she must rely on her friends and family to fight between light and dark.
Fans of Lindgren will appreciate the story’s strong friendly ties and otherworldly-yet-familiar setting.
Find your copy here.
In the mood for a laugh? Look no further than Laura Numeroff’s stories.
Her timeless book If You Give a Mouse a Cookie follows a series of misadventures and escalating antics after an unsuspecting boy gives a mouse a cookie — and of course, the mouse requests a glass of milk, and so on.
You can pick up If You Give a Mouse a Cookie here, and if you’re looking for more misadventures, check out the rest of her If You Give… series.
You can get the book here.
Like Numeroff, Doreen Cronin’s books follow the creative imagining of mischievous animals — in one case, cows who get hold of a typewriter.
You can always count on Cronin for a laugh. With its tongue-in-cheek humor, Cronin’s Click, Clack, Moo is bound to have your young reader laughing and supporting the farm animals’ quest for electric blankets.
Grab your copy here (and be prepared to explain typewriters to your kid).
If laughter is your priority, look no further than the works of Mo Willems. Willems boasts a lengthy resume: he’s an animator, voice actor, scriptwriter, and children’s book author.
In the book world, you’ve likely seen his Elephant and Piggie series. Gerald the elephant and Piggie the pig speak conversationally, making this a great (and hilarious) book series to act out with your young reader.
Get ready to laugh when you grab your copy here.
Throughout her prolific career, German author Cornelia Funke has focused on seamlessly blending riveting yet difficult adventure with the typical nature of children. Her fantasy novels sweep readers to world after world with memorable, fierce characters.
Whether you pick up a series like Dragon Rider or a standalone like Igraine the Brave, know that Funke is out to spark your curiosity and draw a laugh.
Find the first novel in the Dragon Rider series here.
Pick up Igraine the Brave here.
Roald Dahl brought stories James and the Giant Peach, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and Matilda to the page, and filmmakers have since brought Dahl’s words to life on-screen. Most recently, Netflix adapted the wild and whimsical Matilda for the silver screen.
With warmth and quick wit, Dahl’s stories are perfect for bedtime and family movie night. His writing will have your little reader daring to dream of adventure.
Get your copy of Matilda here.
A.A. Milne brought the Hundred Acre Woods and Winne-the-Pooh to life in his iconic Pooh books. Christopher Robin and his crew of animal adventurers are perfect for children who dream of romps in the woods with their imaginary friends.
While Milne wrote fewer children’s books than many other authors, Winnie-the-Pooh, Christopher Robin, and the entire Hundred Acre Woods gang have been immortalized in popular culture.
To return to the story’s origins, get your copy here.
Gertrude Chandler Warner
Gertrude Chandler Warner plays into the tradition of independent, norm-defying children with her long-standing series, The Boxcar Children.
Orphaned siblings Henry, Jessie, Benny, and Violet Alden make an abandoned boxcar their home in the first novel. Subsequently, they live with their kind-hearted grandfather — and solve mysteries, with their boxcar as headquarters.
Warner’s series is perfect for children who are beginning to seek more independence and adventure in their lives — and fiction.
Mary Pope Osborne
A prolific children’s writer, Mary Pope Osborne has more than 60 children’s stories to her name. These titles include her popular Magic Tree House series, in which siblings Jack and Annie embark on missions to solve mysteries across time and space, all with the help of their magic treehouse.
Whether within the Ice Age or on the Titanic, the Magic Treehouse series shows children that no adventure is too large.
You can find the first in the series, Dinosaurs Before Dark, here.
Barbara Park brought rambunctious “almost six-year-old” Junie B. Jones to life in her 31-book series, Junie B. Jones. Energetic, humorous, and always looking for trouble, Junie B. Jones is sure to speak to every child with “too chatty” on their report card.
Park found her way onto banned book lists, but valued making her readers laugh over delivering perfect morals. Besides, what child hasn’t gotten in trouble for talking a bit too much in class?
Find Junie B. Jones’ first installation here.
Like Park, English author Lauren Child’s stories feature energetic children with big imaginations — but the daydreams never drift too far, with the help of their siblings or friends.
Take Lola and Charlie, of Child’s Lola and Charlie series. For all of Lola’s mistakes and misgivings, Charlie is always there to guide the way for his little sister.
You can read about Charlie and Lola in I Will Never NOT EVER Eat a Tomato and rejoice that eventually, your picky eater might try something besides chicken nuggets. Get it here.
If you’re seeking another dynamic sibling duo, look no further than Beverly Cleary and her beloved characters, Ramona and Beezus. Cleary’s boundless sense of adventure brings us straight-laced Ramona and mischievous Beezus. The girls are at odds, but their sisterly bond connects them — a phenomenon that will speak to siblings everywhere.
Humorous and full of heart, Beezus and Ramona is a timeless classic with ties to Cleary’s other books, including Henry Huggins.
Tomie de Paola
With more than 260 children’s books to his name, Tomie de Paola brought a sweet humor and big imagination to children’s literature. de Paola often drew inspiration from his own experiences, but also brought folktales to life for future generations.
Strega Nona — “Grandma Witch” — blends folktale and reality, and showcases the best of de Paola’s artistic and storytelling abilities, and will have you smiling all the way through.
Find your copy here
Maurice Sendak ushered wildness into the children’s picture book scene with his beloved classic, Where the Wild Things Are. After Max wreaks havoc in his own household, he finds himself transported into a jungle, where he becomes the king of the Wild Things.
Children who despise rules will revel in Max’s antics. And parents, you’ll be happy to know that Max returns home of his own accord — safe, sound and without Wild Things in tow.
Bring some happy chaos into your life with a copy of Where the Wild Things Are, located here.
Step into the universe of Greek gods and demigods with children’s author Rick Riordan.
Since Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, Riordan’s work has spanned decades, multiple series, and mythologies — but it all began with Percy Jackson, son of Poseidon.
With his sharp humor, heroic antics, and unfaltering loyalty to his friends, Percy Jackson will show kids that they can make their own destiny, no matter their circumstances.
Be sure to pick up your copy here.
Complete with sprawling watercolor images, Jerry Pinkney’s stories will enthrall children and adults alike.
Decorated children’s book author Pinkney brings fables to life in his stories in vivid color, such as The Lion and The Mouse and The Adventures of Spider: West African Folktales. With many illustration-led stories, Pinkney’s work is primed to inspire young readers and artists alike.
Find your copies of Pinkney’s work here.
A newer voice in the children’s literature world, Carole Lindstrom’s We Are the Water Protectors is a defiant step into children’s storytelling. The gorgeously illustrated picture book will capture young readers’ attention and imagination.
With a bold environmental focus, Lindstrom assures children of their own agency in the world and dares them to use their voice to make a difference. This is the perfect text to springboard your child’s understanding of Earth’s climate and how to protect it.
Be sure to grab your copy of We Are the Water Protectors here.
For stories of friendship, look no further than Arnold Lobel. Lobel matched humor and heart in his writing and illustrations. His stories are often described as warm and cozy, and nowhere else is this better exemplified than in his Frog and Toad series.
These kind-hearted yet coyly funny stories follow the adventures of the two titular characters: the happy-go-lucky Frog, and the preoccupied and serious Toad. Despite these differences, both have a kindness that will set good examples for young readers.
Find your copy here.
Let the Adventure Continue
Whether the character is a mouse or a monster, or the setting is Earth or beyond, each story features brings their own perspective to children’s literature. Enjoy exploring these worlds!
From 1944-2002, Astrid Lindgren wrote children’s fiction, picture books, and screenplays. Notable awards include the Hans Christian Andersen Award for Writing (1958) and the Right Livelihood Award (1994)
How many books did Astrid Lindgren write and sell?
Lindgren wrote more than 30 books for children and throughout her career, sold more than 167 million copies.
What age are the Pippi Longstocking books for?
Children (and adults!) of any age can enjoy the Pippi Longstocking books, but as for the reading level, the books are perfect for kids in grades 2-7.
What should I read after Pippi Longstocking?
Any of the books listed above are great options! Many of these authors have written quite a few books, so be sure to check out their other titles.
What are the most popular children’s books of all time?
1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling (1997)2. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling (1998)
3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling (1999)
4. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling (2000)
5. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling (2003)
6. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling (2005)
7. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling (2007)
8. The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss (1957)
9. The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle (1969)
10. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak (1963)
11. Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss (1960)
12. Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White (1952)
13. The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein (1964)
14. Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne (1926)
15. The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter (1902)
16. Oh, the Places You’ll Go by Dr. Seuss (1990)
17. The Very Fairy Princess by Julie Andrews Edwards and Emma Walton Hamilton (2010)
18. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (1943)
19. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis (1950)
20. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll (1865)
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