Check out a list of notable and award-winning children's books to give to kids in the 2014 holiday gift-giving season. Looking for more? Use our Book Finder tool to search for new books for kids of all ages!
By Jon Agee Price: $13.99; Ages: 3-5
Meet Santa as a baby in a little red onesie! In this tale of Santa's beginnings, we learn that his family hates the North Pole and wants to move to Florida. But a blizzard derails their plans, and the only way to exit their house is up the chimney! Learn how Santa befriends reindeer and elves, and becomes the famous jolly fellow we know and love today. The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) named this a 2014 Notable Children's Book.
Maria and her friend Mouse Mouse live in parallel worlds under the same roof. Neither one can tell her parents about their friendship (Maria's family would buy a cat to drive away the mice; Mouse Mouse's family would move to a hole in the ground because of their fear of people). Both Maria and Mouse Mouse are having trouble finding their moms one day, and go on a parallel search all around the house. This book was named a 2014 Best Illustrated Book by The New York Times.
Fred is a mischievous, fun-loving dog who will do anything to avoid bedtime. Sound familiar? From hiding behind bookshelves and up trees, to splashing in mud puddles and even taking a bath, Fred has a lot of bedtime stall tactics — all of which make him quite sleepy suddenly... This book was named a 2014 Best Illustrated Book by The New York Times.
"CAUTION! This book contains monkeys, toucans, and a whole lot of silliness. You really shouldn't be opening this book." So begins this humorous, hard-to-resist book featuring engaging illustrations by Eisner Award-winning comic artist Matthew Forsythe. The ALSC named this a 2014 Notable Children's Book.
Your child who is crazy for trains will love to experience the sights and sounds of the newly completed transcontinental railroad in the summer of 1869. Readers join a family traveling from Omaha to Sacramento, and watching the landscape wiz by as they pass from the plains through the mountains to the ocean. This book won the 2014 Caldecott Medal and was named a Sibert Honor Book and a 2013 Best Illustrated Book by The New York Times.
The Pilot and the Prince: The Life of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
By Peter Sis Price: $11.99; Ages: 5-8
Learn about the fascinating Frenchman who authored the beloved book The Little Prince. Born in 1900, when airplanes were just being invented, Antoine grew up dreaming of flying a plane. His lofty goal paid off when he got a job flying a plane to deliver mail — which had never been done before. It's the biography of a big dreamer with a daredevil streak. This book was named a 2014 Best Illustrated Book by The New York Times.
At age 9, Nelson Mandela's father died and he was sent from his village to a school in Johannesburg. He saw many fellow Africans who were poor and powerless, and decided at a young age that he would dedicate his life to protecting them. Help introduce your child to the human rights hero who died in December 2013. This book was named a 2014 Coretta Scott King Honor book, an ALSC 2014 Notable Children's Book, and a 2013 Best Illustrated Book by The New York Times.
Self-described cynic Flora Belle Buckman has just saved a squirrel named Ulysses from getting stuck in a vacuum cleaner. Both Flora and Ulysses are amazed to discover that the whole ordeal has caused Ulysses to be "born anew" with super powers of strength, flight, and misspelled poetry. The imaginative novel is interspersed with comic-book style full-page illustrations. It won the 2014 Newbery Medal.
By Jacqueline Woodson Price: $10.99; Ages: 10 and up
In this unique autobiographical poetry book, Woodson shares true stories of her childhood — growing up as an African American during the Civil Rights movement — in mesmerizing verse. Woodson shares emotionally charged yet accessible snapshots of growing up in both South Carolina and New York, sensing remnants of Jim Crow laws. This book won the 2014 National Book Award for Young People's Literature.