The 15 Best Books for 8-Year Olds in 2020

The 15 Best Books for 8-Year Olds in 2020

At 8-years old, a child’s mind is highly receptive and ready for input. Whether they’ve expressed interest in reading before or are being introduced to it for the first time, this is a great age to start getting your kids into novels.

As immersive as visual media is today, reading offers a unique experience for a child. More than any other practice, it helps build their imaginative ability as they learn to transform the words they read on paper into entire stories that play out in their minds. If you’re looking for a good book (or two, or three) to gift your young one, we’re here to help with our list of the best books for 8-year olds.

What to Look for in Books for 8-Year Olds

As readers, 8-year olds are ready to move on to long format books with more immersive themes and descriptions. This age group is typically past the picture book phase, though some great options within the bracket also happen to be illustrated. Let’s take a look at some of the main things to consider while book shopping.


Many good books contain a valuable moral, and this certainly applies to children’s literature. At 8-years old, children are highly receptive to new ideas and viewpoints. By reading a variety of books, they’ll absorb the notions passed on to them by some of the most perceptive minds in history.

We wouldn’t advise you to base your book shopping entirely on literary themes alone — after all, not every book needs a moral. However, it’s important to consider the morals that are being presented to your child, such as the valuable ones offered in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. These lessons will stick with them long after they’ve read the novel’s last words, and may even help shape their development in the future. We’ve listed some prevalent themes in each of our recommended books, though there are several more that your child is likely to pick up on as they read.


While 8-year olds are usually past the phase of reading short chapter books, they aren’t quite ready to digest a massive volume of pages, either. Books in this age group tend to be 200 pages long on average, which represents the sweet spot in terms of a typical 8-year old’s attention span.


Some of the books we’ve recommended are more realistic than others, though they all include an element of fantasy to one extent or another. After all, escapism is one of the greatest joys of reading, especially for young minds. When they’re a little older, they might be interested in reading material more representative of reality; at 8-years old, though, a sense of imaginative play is key. The books listed here mainly range from fantasy to horror, humor and magical realism.

Now that we’ve explored what makes a book a great choice for an 8-year old, let’s take a look at our favorites.

Top 15 Best Books for 8-Year Olds 2020

1. Best Overall Book for 8-Year Olds: Charlotte’s Web

Charlotte’s Web

Why we like it: E.B. White penned an unforgettable tale with Charlotte’s Web, one that’s considered a necessary read for all curious minds.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: E.B. White
  • Number of Pages: 192
  • Genre: Magical Realism
  • Published in 1952

First Line: “’Where’s Papa going with that axe? ‘ said Fern.”

Charlotte’s Web tells the story of a pig named Wilbur and his friendship with Charlotte, a spider that lives in the barn with him. Their bond is observed by Fern Arable, a little girl who forms her own personal friendship with the two. When Wilbur is in danger of being put to rest by the farmer, Charlotte saves his life by sending the farmer written messages on her web.

While many of the novels in this list were written by world-class authors, E.B. White is particularly notable. After all, he co-wrote The Elements of Style, a handbook used by virtually all best-selling writers in the generations that followed him. As such, Charlotte’s Web provides an exceptional reading experience for a young mind. Your child is sure to be as enriched by the book’s vocabulary as they are by its deeply heartfelt plot.

Without spoiling much, we can say that the novel has its fair share of tragedy which is sure to affect a young reader. Of course, one of the reasons why we love reading is for the emotions that books bring us, and there’s a ton of value to be found in the emotions contained and expressed in Charlotte’s Web.


  • Masterfully written
  • Exceptional plot
  • Timeless characters
  • Valuable emotional insight


  • Bittersweet ending

2. Best Premium Book for 8-Year Olds: The Hobbit

The Hobbit

Why we like it: Bilbo Baggins’ run-in with the One Ring is legendary and sure to inspire awe in your little reader.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Number of Pages: 384 (with illustrations)
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Published in 1937

First Lines: In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.

The Hobbit tells the tale of Bilbo Baggins and how he stumbled upon a certain ring. This was no ordinary ring, of course — it was the One Ring to rule all of Middle Earth. It’s a funny twist of fate that such a simple little Hobbit happened to get his hands on the most powerful object in the world. As you can imagine, the chain of events that follow shake the very ground beneath the Hobbit’s bare feet.

The Hobbit isn’t too far off from its 100th year anniversary, and it’s still one of the most commonly read stories today. This is thanks to author J.R.R. Tolkien’s mastery over the written word and the art of world crafting. Middle Earth has been fleshed out in extraordinary detail, both in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings series that followed it. Readers have a lot to learn from Bilbo’s adventure following his discovery of the ring, like the importance of facing obstacles head-on while not succumbing to the evils of temptation.

The one downside to keep in mind with this book is that reading it requires a good amount of focus from an 8-year old mind — more so than the other entries in our list. Your child is sure to be able to follow the story from beginning to end — especially with the illustrated edition that we’ve listed here — though doing so will require some patience from them.


  • Thrilling, timeless tale
  • Immersive fantasy setting
  • Unforgettable characters
  • Key themes of bravery and perseverance


  • Somewhat difficult to read compared to other books within the age bracket

3. Best Fantasy Book for 8-Year Olds: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Why we like it: There’s a reason why Harry Potter is among the most popular characters in the world: his story is of exceptional quality.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: J.K. Rowling
  • Number of Pages: 309
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Published in 1997

First Line: “Mr. and Mrs. Dursley of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.”

Harry Potter never thought his life would amount to much outside of his small existence in a broom cupboard beneath his aunt and uncle’s staircase. He couldn’t imagine the magnitude of his true destiny: to become a great wizard. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is the story of Harry’s first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry — no ordinary year, indeed.

At one point or another, every kid in the world learns about Harry Potter. Whether they decide to delve into the world of Hogwarts in its entirety is up to them, but readers who commit to the Harry Potter book series are in for a thrilling ride. Author J.K. Rowling is a master at crafting twists and turns in her intricately built world. The series is so immersive that the only logical thing to do after completing Sorcerer’s Stone is move on to the next volume in the series.

Among the many key themes in the novel are the importance of friendship, bravery and hope. Your little reader is sure to come out of the story measurably wiser, though keep in mind that some twists and turns are on the darker side. That said, there’s nothing in here that’s too graphic for an 8-year old mind to take in.


  • Intricately crafted, magical setting
  • Timeless characters your child will never forget
  • Story offers an abundance of valuable themes


  • Some sections are a bit on the dark side

4. Best Budget Book for 8-Year Olds: Matilda


Why we like it: Packed with wonder, excitement and valuable life lessons, Matilda is a great addition to any little reader’s library.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: Roald Dahl
  • Number of Pages: 256
  • Genre: Humor/Fantasy
  • Published in 1988

First Lines: “It’s a funny thing about mothers and fathers. Even when their own child is the most disgusting little blister you could ever imagine, they still think that he or she is wonderful.”

Matilda is the story of an exceptionally special girl born into a family that undermines and ignores her. Matilda’s parents and brother are the polar opposite of her; she’s bright, intelligent and kind, while they’re petty, dim-witted and mean. For her entire life, Matilda accepted her living circumstances as a given. However, thanks to some new friends, a great teacher and the lessons learned from the many books she reads, Matilda takes her life into her own hands.

Readers of Matilda are taken on a wild ride as the young hero faces her towering obstacles, both at home and at school. It’s a lot for a young girl to go through, but Matilda’s endearing attitude throughout the story is sure to inspire young readers. No matter how dark her situation is, she maintains a sense of hope that things will one day change for her. Matilda is also an avid reader, and her love for books is sure to drive your child to read more.

The book is easy enough to read that any 8 year old is likely to find him or herself pulled in within the first few pages. However, readers might be troubled at some of the punishment that poor Matilda is made to experience. There are certainly darker sections in some of the other books we’ve listed here, but it’s still worth mentioning.


  • Easy to read
  • Captivating main character
  • Features important themes of hope and perseverance
  • Teaches children the value of reading


  • Some of the punishment Matilda experiences can seem troubling to young readers

5. Best Horror Book for 8-Year Olds: Coraline


Why we like it: Coraline’s journey through a secret door in her new house leads to a dramatic chain of events that gives readers some valuable insight on family.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: Neil Gaiman
  • Number of Pages: 208
  • Genre: Horror/Fantasy
  • Published in 2002

First Line: “Coraline discovered the door a little while after they moved into the house.”

Coraline is a young girl who just moved into a new home. While exploring its rooms, she discovers an unusual door. At its other end, the door reveals an alternate world that’s very similar to her own, though everything about it seems to be improved. Coraline rejoices in her discovery — that is, until she realizes that her new, alternate family is trying to keep her trapped in their world forever.

Despite having issues with her real family, Coraline quickly realizes that they’re always there for her, and that they have her interests deeply at heart. Sometimes, it takes a nightmarish turn of events for lessons like this to sink in. Luckily, your child can simply take the lesson in from the pages of the book without having to experience its events themselves. Ultimately, Coraline will teach your child to appreciate and love their family despite their apparent shortcomings.

There’s a bleak aesthetic that persists throughout Coraline, from author Neil Gaiman’s descriptive narration to the events that drive the novel. While this tone suits the story well, it’s definitely on the scarier side of children’s literature. If your child loves horror, consider picking them up The Werewolf of Fever Swamp as well.


  • Artful, descriptive writing
  • Thrilling twists and turns
  • Teaches readers to appreciate family


  • Plot and tone might be too scary for some children

6. Best Comic Book for 8-Year Olds: The Adventures of Captain Underpants

The Adventures of Captain Underpants

Why we like it: Although goofy in its style and tone, it’s hard to deny how utterly hilarious The Adventures of Captain Underpants is.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: Dav Pilkey
  • Number of Pages: 121
  • Genre: Slapstick Humor
  • Published in 1997

First Lines: “Meet George Beard and Harold Hutchins. George is the kid on the left with the tie and the flat-top. Harold is the one on the right with the T-shirt and the bad haircut. Remember that now.”

George Beard and Harold Hutchins are two mischievous little boys who love spending all their time together creating comic books. When their nefarious principal threatens to place George and Harold into different classes, the pranksters accidentally hypnotize him into believing that he’s Captain Underpants. Together, the boys and their dimwitted, earnest superhero work together to thwart the evil Dr. Diaper.

Although simple in its writing and illustration, The Adventures of Captain Underpants offers an abundance of fun and laughter that kids can enjoy time and time again. If ever they’re curious enough to explore the story further, there’s a number of additional books in the series that have expanded upon it.

The slapstick humor exhibited throughout the novel might be seen as immature by some parents. There are several other books to choose from that offer a more enriching experience, like Charlotte’s Web, our best overall pick. However, sometimes readers just need to sit back and enjoy a good laugh, which is something that The Adventures of Captain Underpants provides in spades.


  • Awesome illustrations
  • Hilarious story
  • Several additional books in the series to progress to


  • Style of humor might not be for everyone

7. Best Book for Dragon Lovers: How to Train Your Dragon

How to Train Your Dragon

Why we like it: If your kid loves dragons, they’ll love what happens within the pages of How to Train Your Dragon.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: Cressida Cowell
  • Number of Pages: 256
  • Genre: Fantasy/Coming of Age
  • Published in 2003

First Line: “Long ago, on the wild and windy isle of Berk, a smallish viking with a longish name stood up to his ankles in snow.”

Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III is the son of Stoick, chief of the island of Berk. This is no ordinary island — here, they fight dragons as a way of life. Dramatic, we know, and Hiccup agrees, though no one else in the island sees things that way. Of course, all of this is destined to change when Hiccup meets his lifelong buddy, Toothless. Together, Hiccup and his dragon set a new course for the people of Berk.

Every kid (and most adults) loves dragons, and would probably like to have one to train, too. Thankfully, books like How to Train Your Dragon allow our dreams to come true vicariously through their stories. As your child tracks the development of Hiccup and Toothless’s friendship, they’ll soak in the importance of taking care of those who are injured, even if they belong to a different species. They’ll also understand that people’s minds can be changed for the better, even if the will to harm others drives them.

How to Train Your Dragon is a fun, easy read that we would recommend to all 8-year olds. They might have trouble wrapping their minds around the vikings’ motivation to fight dragons, though if they stick with the novel to its end, they’ll eventually see that problem resolved. If you want to explore the idea of kindness to animals even further, we recommend offering them Charlotte’s Web as well.


  • Lots of dragons!
  • Positive themes of befriending beings of different species
  • Shows children that people can be motivated to change their harmful ways


  • Children might be sensitive to the notion of people harming dragons

8. Most Imaginative Book: James and the Giant Peach

James and the Giant Peach

Why we like it: Although James’s story gets off to a rough start, he eventually gets taken on a wild adventure that’s sure to light an imaginative spark in young readers’ minds.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: Roald Dahl
  • Number of Pages: 146
  • Genre: Surrealism
  • Published in 1961

First Line: “Until he was four years old, James Henry Trotter had had a happy life.”

After tragically losing his parents, James Henry Trotter has no choice but to live with his aunts, and they happen to be the meanest aunts under the sun. James’s world seems inescapably bleak until he discovers a gigantic magical peach. One thing leads to another, and James eventually finds himself rolling across the sea inside the peach, accompanied by his new talking insect friends as they set sail for New York City.

This classic story shows children that it’s never too late to make friends. Even after losing his parents and being forced to live with his cruel aunts, James still opens his heart to those who care about him. It also teaches kids that a happy ending is always possible even when things seem impossibly bleak.

James and the Giant Peach does indeed come off as bleak for a kid’s novel, especially in its opening act. However, it’s nothing that a curious 8-year old reader can’t handle.


  • Immersive writing style
  • Excellent surreal imagery
  • Teaches children that things can always take a positive turn


  • The story can be quite dark at times

9. Most Timeless Fantasy Series: The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe

Why we like it: C.S. Lewis’ magnum opus presents children with a fantastic and utterly foreign world that will remain in their hearts long after reading its final pages.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: C.S. Lewis
  • Number of Pages: 174
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Published in 1950

First Line: “Once there were four children whose names were Peter, Susan, Edmond, and Lucy.”

The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe doesn’t seem unusual at the start, but things quickly escalate when a little girl named Lucy decides to explore a very special wardrobe. On one end of the wardrobe is the reality we all know; on the other is Narnia, a mythical land inhabited by fantastic entities. Lucy and her siblings quickly become entangled in the center of Narnian affairs, serving its people by freeing themselves from the reigns of an evil witch.

There’s a great lesson to be learned from how the children work together with the Narnians to win their war. No matter how different others might appear to be, there’s a common ground that binds us all together. The sense of adventure instilled in the novel is still fresh despite the generations that have passed since its publication. As dangerous as Narnia is at times, all children would love to visit its breathtaking lands and meet its otherworldly people.

Once your little reader is done with The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, they’ll have a collection of Narnian novels to dive into next. The series as a whole is a big commitment to get through, but there’s a just reward that awaits in this chronicle’s closing pages.


  • Fantastic, timeless adventure
  • Teaches children to treat others kindly despite apparent differences
  • Large collection of novels in the series


  • The story as a whole is a big time commitment to complete

10. Most Action-Filled Mystery: Holes


Why we like it: Holes features a maze of mysterious twists and turns that your little reader will love navigating through.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: Louis Sachar
  • Number of Pages: 272
  • Genre: Adventure
  • Published in 1998

First Line: “There is no lake at Camp Green Lake.”

After being falsely accused of theft, a teenage boy named Stanley Yelnats is sent to Camp Green Lake, a juvenile detention center set in a desert in Texas. Stanley quickly discovers that Camp Green Lake is a brutal place where the camp warden and her staff make the children dig holes all day long in the blazing heat of the desert.

The real question that pervades throughout the novel is, “Why on Earth are these kids being forced to dig these holes?” Of course, there’s a series of hoops readers must jump through before getting their answer. Through each turn of events, Holes keeps the reader’s eyes glued to its pages thanks to author Louis Sachar’s singular ability to build suspense.

By the end of the story, readers are presented with a unique view of luck and destiny. Despite being a bit on the lengthy side for a children’s novel, Holes is an action-packed, easy-to-read story that’s suitable for all 8-year olds.


  • Very easy to read
  • Full of thrills and surprises
  • Gives children insight on luck and fate


  • Longer than most books within the age bracket

11. Best for Candy Lovers: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Why we like it: Aside from allowing your child to vicariously eat all the candy and chocolate they could ever want, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory also teaches them the potential of magic that awaits behind every turn.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: Roald Dahl
  • Number of Pages: 162
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Published in 1964

First Line: “These two very old people are the father and mother of Mr. Bucket.”

Little Charlie Bucket lives with his parents and all four of his grandparents in a house on the outskirts of town. It seems like a normal, somewhat bland life at first, but we soon learn that the best and biggest chocolate factory in the world operates in Charlie’s town. Our little hero eventually stumbles upon a golden ticket that grants him a tour of the chocolate factory and the opportunity to meet Willy Wonka, its eccentric owner.

Charlie’s adventure in the chocolate factory is a blast for any child to read. For one, it allows children to vicariously enjoy all the candy and chocolate in the world without them ever getting a sugar rush. It also shows them that, no matter how bland their lives might seem, a magical adventure potentially awaits at every turn.

The book as a whole is definitely kid-friendly. However, the punishments that some of the children receive while misbehaving in Willy Wonka’s factory can seem a little extreme at first. As the book goes on, though, we learn that no lasting candy-related harm was done to any of its characters.


  • Masterfully written
  • Many hilarious scenes
  • Teaches children that even the most normal circumstances can take a magical turn


  • Some scenes are a bit on the dark side

12. Best Dark Story: The Bad Beginning

The Bad Beginning

Why we like it: Although a bleaker story than most within the age bracket, this book shows kids what real unfortunate events look like, and how quickly they can turn for the better.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: Lemony Snicket
  • Number of Pages: 142
  • Genre: Gothic Fiction
  • Published in 1999

First Line: “If you are interested in stories with happy endings, you would be better off reading some other book.”

Violet, Klaus and Sunny Baudelaire are not the luckiest of siblings, to say the least. They became orphans following a tragic fire, and were sent to live with Count Olaf, an apparent distant relative of the Baudelaire’s. As it turns out, Count Olaf is as nasty as a count can be, and it’s up to Violet, Klaus and Sunny to get themselves out of their unfortunate predicament.

As its first line suggests, A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Bad Beginning is far from a feel-good novel. However, there’s a lot of value to be gained by discovering the obstacles faced by characters who are much less fortunate than we are. This makes readers appreciate how good they tend to have it, and the novel’s progression also shows them that even the darkest circumstances can take a turn toward the light.

All in all, we’d recommend this novel — as well as the other volumes in A Series of Unfortunate Events — to all 8-year olds despite its gothic tone. If you’re looking for a brighter story to present to your young reader, consider Mary Poppins. The titular nanny in that book is sure to put a smile on your child’s face while gifting them some of her inimitable wisdom.


  • Simple and easy to read
  • Teaches children to be grateful for what they have
  • Children can follow the story in the series’ additional volumes


  • Somewhat gloomy for a children’s novel

13. Most Insightful Hero: Mary Poppins

Mary Poppins

Why we like it: A timeless piece of children’s literature, Mary Poppins features an inimitable hero with priceless wisdom and insight to pass on.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: P.L. Travers
  • Number of Pages: 208
  • Genre: Magical Realism
  • Published in 1934

First Line: “If you want to find Cherry-Tree Lane all you have to do is ask the Policeman at the cross-roads.”

Jane, Michael, John and Barbara Banks live at 17 Cherry-Tree Lane in London with their parents. The children’s nanny takes a leave of absence and is replaced by Mary Poppins, who travels to the house using an umbrella borne on the east wind. Though she seems irritable and stern, the children soon discover that their new nanny can talk to animals, step into pictures and dot the very sky with stars.

If your child were to see their nanny use a magical umbrella to take off into the open air, it would surely inspire their sense of imagination. Such a thing doesn’t tend to happen in the real world, but experiencing it through the pages of Mary Poppins accomplishes a similar effect. The book as a whole explores the relationships between children and adults while focusing on the very fine line that separates them.

The vocabulary used in the novel can be difficult at times, but completing difficult literature is how we grow as readers. If your child gives it some time, they’re sure to love this book and its timeless, mysterious hero.


  • Simple and immersive plot
  • Inspires a reader’s sense of imagination
  • Explores the fine line that separates children and adults


  • Vocabulary can be difficult to grasp at times

14. Best Monster Story: The Werewolf of Fever Swamp

The Werewolf of Fever Swamp

Why we like it: Although it might be a bit too scary for some children, The Werewolf of Fever Swamp is a great pick for young horror lovers.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: R.L. Stine
  • Number of Pages: 160
  • Genre: Horror
  • Published in 1993

First Lines: “We moved to Florida during Christmas vacation. A week later, I heard the frightening howls in the swamp for the first time.”

The Werewolf of Fever Swamp tells the story of Grady Tucker, a young boy who moves into a new house in a completely different state. The house happens to be “conveniently” located next to Fever Swamp, a place that seems ominous right from the get-go. Rightfully so — as the title suggests, Fever Swamp is home to a vicious werewolf, which makes things pretty complicated for the Tucker family, to say the least.

Moving can be a tough time for children to go through — especially when there’s a werewolf lurking in a nearby swamp. Of course, this is a classic example of a Goosebumps plot. There’s a tremendous volume of books in the series to choose from. We happen to like this one, though feel free to pick from any of the horrors in author R.L. Stine’s vault.

While there’s nothing too graphic in here, The Werewolf of Fever Swamp (as well as the other Goosebumps books) is definitely on the scarier side of children’s books. That said, it’s still a great read for young thrill-seekers to pick up.


  • Thrilling, action-packed story
  • Simple and easy to read
  • There’s a large selection of Goosebumps novels for children to progress to


  • Quite scarier than other books within the age bracket

15. Best Classic Adventure: Peter Pan

Peter Pan

Why we like it: Despite its language being a little dated compared to our other recommendations, Peter Pan is simply too magical a tale to pass up.

Editor’s Rating:

At a Glance

  • Author: J.M. Barrie
  • Number of Pages: 166
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Published in 1911

First Line: “All children, except one, grow up.”

Peter Pan lives on the mythical island of Neverland. The leader of the Lost Boys, Peter spends his days with fairies, mermaids and other fantastic creatures, all while under the watchful telescope of a menacing pirate. In this novel, we see what happens when Peter — a mischievous young boy who can fly and never grows up — meets a group of ordinary children.

Peter Pan is as classic a tale as they come, universally beloved by generations of children. Any young reader who flips through its pages is sure to be mystified by the adventures of its titular character. Peter Pan shows us that, despite the unstoppable march of time, our youthful spirit lives on inside of us forever.

Since it was published in 1911, the language used in the novel can be a little dated for a young, modern reader. Getting through the book might require some patience from your 8-year old, though keep in mind that this will also help sharpen their reading skills.


  • Classic story that’s still exciting to read today
  • Teaches children to always hold on to their youthful spirit
  • Completing the book will help improve your child’s reading skills


  • Somewhat dated language that requires focus and patience from readers

Final Words

little girl reading book

It’s never too early to introduce your child to the joy of reading. At 8 years old, a child’s mind is highly receptive to new ideas and opinions, so it’s a great time to plop a good book onto their lap. As they flip through its pages, their sense of imagination will bloom by the minute, and they’ll also be developing key skills like focus, patience and language comprehension.

If nothing else, reading is a great way to deflect your kid’s attention away from the screen. Whether you plan on reading aloud with them or leaving them to their imagination’s devices (or both), you’re sure to find a number of great picks in our list of books.