100 Books that Shaped Their Boyhood, Part 1

I am working down the list of questions that have been sent in over the past year. First on the list:

“What are your children’s absolute favorite stories?”

I interviewed the boys and they gave me ONE HUNDRED FAVORITE TITLES. There were few surprises in there, they have always been extremely vocal about their book experiences. These are the stories that have shaped their childhood the most (so far). These are the stories that left them changed. These are the stories that lifted their hearts and planted new dreams. These are the stories that have inclined their hearts towards worthy things. These are the stories we have laughed and cried over. These are the stories we return to again and again. Out of the millions of tales out there in the world, these are the ones that feel like home. They listed 100 books that have shaped their boyhood and I’ll be sharing this in two parts. First up…

50 Favorite Picture Book Stories

The Biggest Bear by Lynd Ward
The Kitchen Knight by Margaret Hodges
St George and the Dragon by Margaret Hodges
Merlin and the Making of the King by Margaret Hodges
Andrew Henry’s Meadow by Doris Burns
The Summerfolk by Doris Burns
Andy and the Lion by James Daugherty
Children of the Forest by Elsa Beskow
Stone Soup by Marcia Brown
The Quiltmaker’s Gift by Jeff Brambeua
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney
The Ox-Cart Man by Donald Hall
Little Red Riding Hood by Trina Schart Hyman
Chester the Worldly Pig by Bill Peet
Six Dinner Sid by Inga Moore
Thy Friend Obadiah by Brinton Turkle
Tikki Tikki Tembo by Arlene Mosel
Gyo Fujikawa books
A Child’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson
Beatrix Potter stories
Winnie-the-Pooh by AA Milne
Come Again, Pelican by Don Freeman
The Bee Tree by Patricia Polacco
Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey
One Morning in Maine by Robery Mccluskey
The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams
King Bidgood’s in the Bathtub by Audrey Wood
Elbert’s Bad Word by  Audrey Wood
The Three Billy Goats Gruff by Paul Galdone
Mouskin’s Mystery by Edna Miller
Anno’s book series by Mitsumasa Anno
Ruby Throat by Robert McClung
Brother Sun and Sister Moon by Pamela Dalton
Alfie stories by Shirley Hughes
Billy and Blaze series by C.W. Anderson
Leif the Lucky by Ingri and Edgar D’Aulaire
George Washington by Ingri and Edgar D’Aulaire
Brambly Hedge by Jill Berkley
The Adventures of Tim by Edward Ardizzone
James Herriot Treasury of Stories for Children
The Raft by Jim LaMarche
The Art Lesson by Tomie de Paola
Rechenka’s Eggs by Patricia Palacco
The Burgess Bird Book by Thornton Burgess
The Children’s Book of Virtue by William J Bennet
Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel by Virginia Hamilton
The Year At Maple Hill Farm by Provensons
Roxaboxen by Alice McLaren
How To Dig A Hole To The Other Side Of The World by Faith McNulty

I’ll be sharing 50 Chapter Book Stories next!

14 thoughts on “100 Books that Shaped Their Boyhood, Part 1

  1. Dear Feisty Mama: There are so many wonderful books on this list and I love that Patricia Polacco and Alice and Martin Provensen are authors that you and your boys included. I remember with particular pleasure reading, almost every night for two years, Our Animal Friends at Maple Hill Farm. Thank you for bringing such a beautiful memory back to my mind AND heart.


  2. Thank you, this is great! My boys and I will definitely be working our way down this list. Looking forward to the chapter books!


  3. LOVE your list. I have a 3 yr old boy and most booklist I come across tend to be oriented for girls but this is what I can see my little man enjoy.


  4. Thank you so much for sharing your boys’ list! We are in major picture book phase right now and I’m looking at adding some new ones to our little library soon. I’m going to add from your list any of the books that I don’t already have on mine. I really appreciate that you asked your children what their personal favorites were. It’s so splendid to have the input of young ones when picking out books for mine!


  5. Thank you for sharing this treasure trove. I love your taste in books. There are three here that I’m unfamiliar with, but I’ll amend that in short order.

    I remember the first time I read Miss Rumphius aloud to my son, and I was thinking, “Why didn’t I read this as a child?”

    My very favorite picture book is Time of Wonder by Robert McCloskey. I have 18 of the paintings hanging in our living room. 🙂 🙂

    Have you read “Mulga Bill’s Bicycle” by A.B. Paterson? It’s a favorite as of late.

    Have you read any books by Sterling North?
    I haven’t found many yet, but I read The Wolfing aloud and we adored it. I liked “Hurry, Spring!”
    I can mail you a copy if you like.

    Does your library carry books by Helen Frost and Rick Lieder such as:
    Wake Up!
    Sweep Up the Sun
    Step Gently Out
    Among a Thousand Fireflies
    They’ve been favorites lately, too.

    Okay just one more! Eric Sloane books. 🙂 🙂

    A Kindred Spirit in Michigan,


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