Books for Kids (& You Too!)

When I usually write for the LPL blog, I take the time to share my favorite reads on the adult side. I take the chance to share some of my favorite reads with my peers because even as an employee at a library, I rarely get a chance to discuss my favorite YA or Adult reads. Most of the time the books I am talking about, recommending, and reading for work are all for the kiddos. I know a lot of you also come here for all the adult and YA recommendations your heart desires but today, I am going to take the time to tell you ALL ABOUT how you can find the perfect book for a kiddo in your life. Some of my favorite kid reads are ones that I think everyone should read even if the only kid we have in our life is our own inner child.

First thing’s first. Did you know that just like our awesome Book Squad counterparts, you can also get recommendations for any kid (or teen!) in your life? Yep that’s right! If you fill out this form on our website, an LPL librarian from the children’s department will carefully put together a list according to your kid’s likes, dislikes, and anything else you want to include to help us find the perfect picks. When you hit the “who would you like recommendations from?” question, select the “Children” (or teen!) option, and your list comes directly to us. Putting together lists for patrons is not quite as full of the instant gratification of putting a book directly into someone's hands, but it also prevents the “oh man, I forgot to mention these three books!” moment that inevitably happens when that kid wanders away to check out. Send us your queries! We love finding the perfect books and if you're stumped or too tired or have a kid who turns down everything you suggest, then fill out the form and let us do the heavy lifting. We can't wait to find you the best books for your kiddo!

This blog post would not be complete with some of my favorite children’s books that I’ve been recommending, adding to lists, and putting into the hands of every kid and adult that I think would be into them. In no particular order, awesome reads await…

All Thirteen

Read this book if you love: caves, a harrowing escape, suspense, non-fiction, and want to learn more about Thailand.

This book is spellbinding as in your eyes and hands will be bound to this book until you finish it. Soontornvat weaves all of the elements of this truly harrowing rescue into an unputdownable read. Excellently researched, wonderfully written and a jaw dropping book about the courage it takes to survive and rescue thirteen soccer players trapped almost a mile beneath the earth for two weeks.

When You Trap A Tiger

Read this book if you love: tigers, mythology, magic, stories about family, awesome grandmothers

Just like the tigers that Lily faces, this book is magical. Winner of the Newbery Award and the Asian/Pacific American Award for Children's Literature Award, Keller traps the perfect story about finding your way, finding your voice, and protecting the people you love most. Lily and Halomni shine as characters you want to know and be while spinning in enough magic to enthrall every reader. 

Fighting Words

Read this book if you love: stories about sisters, beautiful writing, tackling tough topics, finding your voice.

Fighting Words will stay with me for the rest of my life. While this is a tough book to recommend to kids, as one of the topics at the forefront is sexual abuse of a child, Bradley reminded me through this beautiful book, that just because it’s a tough topic doesn’t mean that kids aren’t faced directly with sexual abuse every day. Della is strong, determined and utterly devoted to her sister. This book is powerful and will rock you to your core while also giving you so much hope.

-Lauren Taylor is a Children's Librarian at Lawrence Public Library.