21 Children’s Books Every Adult Should Read Again

Have you ever decided to revisit an old book and thought to yourself, “man, forgot how much I love this!”. Well this list is filled with books that will give you that old nostalgic feeling that will instantly take you back to days of yore…however far back they may be!

From childhood favorites to tweeny tales, this collection of 21 Children’s Books Every Adult Should Read Again is sure to reawaken your love for these classics. Best of all, most of these are super quick reads that you can enjoy between finishing up Game of Thrones or Girl on the Train.

And the list doesn’t stop here! Several children’s books have adult themes that go right over the heads of kids. Going back and re-reading these stories will not only give you a new appreciation for the work, but will give you an excuse to enjoy these books with your own family!

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Where the Wild Things Are
Maurice Sendak
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In a Word: A story about a little boy, isolated in his own world, who travels to a magical land filled with loveable monsters and becomes King of the Wild Things.
Common Themes: Isolation, Growth, Friendship, Imagination

Charlotte’s Web
E.B. White
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In a Word: A pig and a spider develop a sweet friendship, and together they learn about everything from love to loss.
Common Themes: Friendship, Acceptance, Mortality, Growth

The Sneeches
Dr. Seuss
the-sneetches
In a Word: A group of bird-like creatures called Sneeches alter their appearances again and again to fit in with “the popular crowd”.
Common Themes: Belonging, Acceptance, Bullying

The Lorax
Dr. Seuss
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In a Word: The Lorax is a creature that speaks for the trees and he battles against “The Big Man” to save the forest from the expansion and advancement of technology.
Common Themes: Bravery, Enviornmental Awareness

Where the Sidewalk Ends
Shel Silverstein
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In a Word: A collection of short humorous poems covering a variety of topics and themes. Also includes tons of Silverstein’s iconic illustrations.
Common Themes: Humor, Aging, Family, Poetry

The Little Prince
Antoine de Saint-Exupery
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In a Word: An explorer crashes on his way home and meets a little prince who opens his eyes to the beauty of life and the world around him. Simosaniously beautiful and heartbreaking.
Common Themes: Isolation, Wisdom, Love, Friendship

The Phantom Tollbooth
Norton Juster
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In a Word: A little boy receives a make-believe tollbooth. When he drives through it in his toy car, he’s transported to the Lands Beyond where he encounters several characters along the way…similar in style to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.
Common Themes: Adventure, Learning, Education, Problem Solving

The Polar Express
Chris Van Allsburg
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In a Word: A little boy boards a magical train to the North Pole, where he meets Santa Claus and learns the true meaning of Christmas.
Common Themes: Christmas, Believing, Growth, Imagination

The Giver
Lois Lawry
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In a Word: A young boy spends time with an old man who is responsible for keeping the community’s memories. Along the way, he learns the dangerous truths of the community’s secret past.
Common Themes: Society, Humanity, Memory

The Harry Potter Series
J.K. Rowling
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In a Word: A young wizard learns about friendship, bravery, love and more during his seven years at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
Common Themes: Friendship, Bravery, Magic, Education

A Series of Unfortunate Events
Lemony Snicket
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In a Word: Three young children are sent off to live with their distant relative, Count Olaf. When they learn he’s a cruel, scheming man, the children escape and embark on a collection of adventures.
Common Themes: Courage, Cleverness, Youth

Anne of Green Gables
L.M. Montgomery
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In a Word: A young girl is adopted by an older couple and quickly becomes the joy of everyone’s life.
Common Themes: Adoption, Friendship, Beauty, Wonder, Language

Walk Two Moons
Sharon Creech
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In a Word: Two stories are woven together, one funny, one bitterswee, to create a heartwarming and compelling story about a girl and her mother.
Common Themes: Loss and Grief, Growth, Mother and Daughter

The Diary of a Young Girl
Anne Frank
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In a Word: The diary of Anne Frank, a young Jewish girl who hid in an attack with her family to escape the Nazis during World War 2.
Common Themes: Bravery, History, Judiasm, Language, Beauty, Courage

Amelia Bedelia
Peggy Parish
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In a Word: A young nanny always does exactly what she’s told…but somehow things just never turn out right.
Common Themes: Humor, Wit, Word Play

Peter Pan
J.M. Barrie
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In a Word: A story about a young boy who can never grow up. Both sweet and sad and enjoyable for kids of all ages.
Common Themes: Abandonment, Growth, Aging, Friendship, Family

Watership Down
Richard Adams
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In a Word: A group of rabbits journey from their home to escape the invasion of man.
Common Themes: Man and Nature, Power, Fear, Freedom

Love You Forever
Robert Munsch
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In a Word: A short and sweet story about the love for children and parents.
Common Themes: Family, Love, Loss and Grief, Aging

The Trumpet of the Swan
E.B. White
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In a Word: A young swan is unable to trumpet joyfully like his brothers and sisters. When his father presents him with a real brass trumpet, Louis the swan uses it to try to win the affection of a fellow lady swan.
Common Themes: Family, Persistence

The New Kid on the Block
James Stevenson
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In a Word: A collection of funny and witty poetry that is a joy for kids of all ages.
Common Themes: Poetry, Humor, Wit

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie
Laura Joffe Numeroff
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In a Word: A story about how every action equals another action or reaction.
Common Themes: Giving, Action and Reaction

Looking for a new book to read? Check in every Friday for a “Bee Happy” post, where I share reviews of books I’ve read or other book-themed lists.

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