Best Books for Babies
The first step toward strong reading skills is a love for books and reading in general, and the list of the best books for babies on this page can provide an excellent starting point. Books that are colorful, funny and interesting for little ones can foster a love for books right off the bat.
Reading to your baby should be fun for you both. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) actually encourages parents to read aloud to children every day starting as early as birth and continuing up until kindergarten and beyond.
Reading aloud is one of the most effective ways to foster early literacy skills which is why it is great to start reading at such a young age. With more than one third of children in the USA starting kindergarten unequipped with the literacy skills they need, you can see how important it is to have books at home and read them to children.
At this young age babies need more stimulus than older kids. Unfortunately there is no easy way to test these books so we asked our team of moms and educators. The have learned through trial and error and they shared that learning with us. Add some research by our internal team and mix it all into a big blog blender and we have some of our favorite classic children’s books and some newer titles that make up the Top 10 Baby Books of 2017.
Build baby’s first library with childhood classics, bestsellers and touch-and-feel book they are sure to be engaged by and that you will love reading to them. From board books to animals to Twinkle, Twinkle and bedtime stories to soothe at night, we hope this selection of the top baby books are perfect for you.
What’s here: On this page are the ten best picks in baby books (age 0-2 years) for 2017. Rankings are based on two factors – overall popularity and consumer ratings. These were the baby books that were most highly rated and sold at sufficient volume.
For shoppers: For each of the baby books recommended in the 2017 list, links are provided to purchase the book online from a trusted and safe merchant – online resources are hand-picked for online availability, security and price. Links to reviews are also provided, where available. These are great books to give as a gift to expecting parents at the baby shower in a lovely book-basket.
Updated: April 8th, 2017
1. The Very Hungry Caterpillar (Board Book) by Eric Carle
2. Goodnight Moon (Board Book) by Margaret Wise Brown
3. First 100 Words by Roger Priddy
4. Ten Tiny Toes by Caroline Jayne Church
5. Animals (Baby Touch and Feel) by DK Publishing
6. Zoom, Zoom, Baby! – A Karen Katz Lift-the-Flap Book by Karen Katz
7. Dear Zoo: A Lift-the-Flap Book by Rod Campbell
8. Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star by Caroline Jayne Church
9. Corduroy by Don Freeman
10. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr.
Top 10 Best Books for Babies:
|Animals (Baby Touch and Feel) *||$4.19|
|Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (Chicka Chicka Book, A) *||$7.99|
|Dear Zoo: A Lift-the-Flap Book *||$4.71|
|First 100 Words *||$4.21|
|Goodnight Moon *||$5.93|
|Ten Tiny Toes *||$7.09|
|The Very Hungry Caterpillar *||$6.61|
|Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star *||$5.57|
|Zoom, Zoom, Baby!: A Karen Katz Lift-the-Flap Book (Karen Katz Lift-The-Flap Books) *||$6.99|
A long-term favorite comes in first of the top 10 baby books for 2017 – The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.
I read this story to my little boy almost every night before he goes to sleep. It is a household and childhood favorite, for sure. This tale follows a very hungry caterpillar as he eats and eats more to grow fatter. Eventually, he cocoons, then emerges a beautiful, colorful butterfly.
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown comes in next as a returning favorite among the best baby books this year.
This book is a sweet classic! I consider it a childhood must-read. The story is all about little bunny, a tired youngster who really wants to stay awake. So, he says goodnight to everything he sees to keep himself from sleeping. As little bunny gets sleepier, the pictures get dimmer.
The art, wording, colors and the story is just great. My kids love looking at the bunnies. This was written over 60 years ago and its simplicity, values and calming nature are as relevant today as back then. Great bedtime book.
Next on our list for 2017 – First 100 Words by Roger Priddy.
When your kiddo is on the verge of learning new, exciting words, give them an encouraging nudge in the right direction. This picture and word association book features 100 simple must-know words, like baby, banana, cat, dog, apple, and duck.
This is our favorite word books. It is perfect to pack in your diaper bag for on the go and use it when your child is restless and you don’t want them to stick their head in kids apps on the iPhone. Each page has a focus and theme, for example it can be bath time or food or cars and each page has about 5-10 things to identify. The images have a bright background and the pictures are nice and simple which definitely makes it easier for the kiddos.
A lovely story! Ten Tiny Toes by Caroline Jayne Church is another top favorite among books for babies this year.
It is so cute when babies discover their fingers and toes! Their eyes fill with wonder, and of course they immediately shove all of their digits in their mouth. Drool everywhere! Haha. This book explains body parts to curious babies.
A fun thing to do when reading this book to your child is to point and touch the body parts that the book is referring to on the page. My son’s eyes lit up and he couldn’t stop laughing when I did that to him. I love the large pictures and simplicity of the book as often at a young age kids can be overwhelmed by the other stuff on pages in books. There isn’t too much going on in the background and that made my son’s life easier.
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Yet another returning favorite marks a spot at #5 of the top baby books in 2017 – Animals by DK Publishing.
Babies develop their senses through constant use, which is why you often see a toddler putting everything in his mouth. This book, appropriately named Animals, features page upon page of furry, fluffy, scaly, sometimes odd, never slimy animals. Complete with texture pages that kids can rub, discover, associate, and explore.
My son was pretty young when I started reading this book to him (probably around 10 months old). He was way too young to understand the animals but he totally loved the different feelings and fun textures on the pages. Don’t wait till your kids are old enough to buy this book, it really is just as fun at any age.
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Marking sixth of the best baby books 2017 – Zoom, Zoom, Baby! by Karen Katz. Karen has written and illustrated more than fifty picture books so it is no surprise that she knows what she is doing.
In Zoom, Zoom, Baby, baby is out for a day on the town, riding in buses, cars, trucks, and lots of other fun, exciting, interesting vehicles. Youngsters flip the pages, lift the flip-up flaps, and discover where Baby has traveled to next. There are lots-a different, hidden animals to find in every picture, too.
My son was about 18 months old when we started reading this book and he totally fell for it. He wanted to read it at least two times every night. The story and sequence is nice and simple so he could follow along but the real attraction of course is the flaps and the cool things hiding behind them. He would laugh at the same things over and over again well into his 2s when we stopped reading this book at bedtime.
Next – at #7 on the list – Dear Zoo: A Lift-the-Flap Book by Rod Campbell. Rod focuses on books for babies and toddlers, the best known being Dear Zoo, which has sold over two million copies worldwide.
Dear Zoo, another classic, has had a colorful makeover to bring out the crisp, bold colors. This storybook is all about finding the perfect pet, and one little boy discovers what his ideal animal companion would be. Features flip-up flaps.
The book has simple text and a simple story with flaps and touch-and-feel elements. The interactive aspect is super-involving and kids love it when they get to pull open the tabs to show the hidden animals. Super fun.
Ringing a familiar bell – Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star by Caroline Jayne Church also makes it to the “best of” list of books for babies in 2017.
Adorable, captivating, and wrapped in silvery foils, this beautiful book is the traditional lullaby: Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. Youngsters from around the world are drawn with their stuffed animals, stargazing at the brilliant, bright twinklers in the heavens. Lovin’ it!
With an eye-catching foil cover that twinkles even on the darkest nights, Caroline Jayne Church’s beloved toddlers and stuffed animals become adorable stargazers in this perfect bedtime rhyme.
Hitting 9th on the list – Corduroy by Don Freeman.
Corduroy is a fluffy, fuzzy, adorable little teddy bear, but he wakes up on his shelf to discover he is missing a button. Hopping off his shelf, he goes on a store-wide search for his button. It ends beautifully when a little girl buys Corduroy and gives him new buttons.
This book is definitely a classic (my mom read this one to me when I was a child) and it fills me with joy that I am doing the same thing with my son. I love the bright colors and the fact that the story is short and sweet which makes this the perfect bedtime routine story book.
And – 2017’s final item on the list of the top ten baby books is Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr..
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom! Not only is it an awesome story title, those string of words are simply super-fun to say. This book follows the ABCs as they climb the coconut tree, aiming to be the first letter to the top. Lovin’ the colorful pictures, funky letters, and simple words.
This is a simple and fun way to get the alphabet in front of young kids. Colorful and bright pages. One thing to note is that this book needs you as the reader to make it come alive.
Update note: This Top 10 Baby Books page was modified to reflect current information on April 8th, 2017.