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Popular Toddler Books That You Will Not Regret Buying

What Makes a Book Perfect for Toddlers?

Do you have any special memories that are tied back to a story as a child? Maybe it was a book that you read over and over again. I still have my favorite flap book that is all worn out! 

Here’s a list of toddler books that you will want to add to your toddler library. You may not have time to look through the mountain of amazing kids books out there. I know I would have loved a curated list of the best physical books for my toddlers when I first had my kids! 

In this list you will find:

  • Sounds books 
  • Flap books
  • Bedtime books
  • Thoughtful books 
  • Animal books
  • Adorable stories
  • and more

Books with rich images and charming illustrations are great tools to develop kids’ imagination and their love of reading. Children can discover the wonderful feeling of finding new favorite books. This list is a great place to begin building those memories with your kids.


Why Are Physical Books and Reading So Good for Toddlers?

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Reading with our children is a real gift for parents. It is also great for children! Reading with your toddlers provides amazing benefits:


  • Growing their language abilities
  • Developing your bond with your children
  • Expanding their imagination 
  • Brain development 
  • Concentration skills 
  • Modeling a passion for reading
  • Preparing them for school

A thoughtful book that teaches an important lesson is a good way to introduce morals and values to your children. Animal books are the perfect place to discuss the diversity of life and the complexity and wonder of the natural world. Disney books often have characters that are exciting and entertaining. Musical books can encourage a love of music as kids begin to understand the noises around them. And of course, bedtime stories have the magical quality of sending our little ones into a wonderfully restful slumber.

With toddler books, the benefits are many and the downsides are almost non-existent. Having physical books to enjoy with your children is a win-win for everyone!


What Types of Toddler Books Should I Have?

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Toddler Books for Boys and Girls

Boys and girls are different. How different can books be for boys and girls? 

Some boys can typically be interested in machines, tools, sports, vehicles and animals. Some girls can be interested in people (specifically girl characters), animals and fairy tales. When your kids are really young, it may not matter what you choose, but as they grow into toddlers you can get them a few boys’ and girls’ books.

An example of a boy’s book would be Garbage Tales by Jack Redwing. A wonderful ride-along story about a garbage truck, the people that drive them and the wonderful adventures they get into as they go about their day.

An example of a girl’s book would be Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell. A beautiful story about a girl who is told to walk proud and strong but is bullied in school.

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Toddler Books About Exploration

Toddler books are the best place to begin fostering a love and anticipation for adventure and exploration. Physical books with rich images have a way of doing that with kids. What books could do this for your kids?

  • Shh! We Have a Plan by Chris Haughton. An exciting and fun look into the adventures of four friends who are looking to catch a bird, resulting in all sorts of fun and wacky scenarios.
  • The Highlights Book of Things to Do Discover Explore Create and Do Great Things. This book is for older children, 7 and up. With this book, adventuring and exploring become a breeze, as easy as flipping open a page and seeing what the book has in store for you!
  • The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats. In this story, a boy named Peter goes on an adventure in his neighborhood after the first snowfall. This is the perfect book to encourage your kids to get up and explore the snow day that may be just outside their door! 
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Toddler Books About Feeling and Emotions

Even as adults, feelings and emotions can be difficult and confusing. Imagine what it is like for a child! Thoughtful books about emotions and feelings are a powerful tool to help children understand what they are feeling. These can be read as a bedtime book or along with the animal books and Disney books.

  • Alfie and the Birthday Surprise by Shirley Hughes. Loss can be a difficult subject to bring up with your kids. It can be painful, confusing and sad all at the same time. This charming story skillfully approaches the loss of a pet.
  • Being Friends by Karen Beaumont. This is a story about the highs and lows of friendship. How can we celebrate our differences together?
  • Baby Happy Baby Sad by Leslie Patricellie. This simple flap book explains through charming illustrations what can make a baby happy and what can make a baby sad. 

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Toddler Books About Imagination

Einstein said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.” Helping to develop your child’s imagination is one of the most important jobs you have as a parent. Fairy tales are the best types of stories to grow your toddler’s imagination and Cali’s Books has the best selection of fairy tale sound books. Here are some adorable story books to help you!

  • Jack and the Beanstalk. The classic tale of Jack and the Beanstalk, shared through charming illustrations and wonderful sound!
  • Hansel and Gretel. Another classic, beautifully drawn and wonderfully recorded.
  • Beauty and the Beast. This is derived from the famous Disney book, which is one of the most beloved fairy tales ever.
  • Cinderella. Who could forget Cinderella? Watch this tale come to life! It makes a great bedtime book or is wonderful anytime during the day.
  • The Ugly Duckling. One of my children’s most beloved stories!
  • The Three Little Pigs. The ever-famous three little pigs’ story. Wow your kids with this beautifully drawn and superbly recorded sound book.

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Toddler Books About Fears

Fear and worry can be other confusing emotions for children. Books and stories can help them unpack and understand those feelings as you read along with them.

  • Thunder and Lightning: They’re Not So Frightening by JD Schmith. It is common for kids to be afraid of lightning and thunder. This book helps explain what it is, why it happens and why it isn’t scary at all.
  • The Storm Book by Charlotte Zolotow. A great book to read on a stormy day! The storm book explains how a curious boy wants to understand what is happening during a summer storm.
  • Wemberly Worried by Kevin Henkes. An inspiring story about a worrywart who realizes that life is too fun to spend time worrying!

Sound Books

Sound books are great as toddler books in ways that are different from other physical books. You and your toddler get to interact with a sound book in a way that is more exciting than a regular flap book or a Disney book.

This added level of interaction can help build stronger bonds and create more powerful memories. It’s also more fun to do! Here are some of the best nursery rhyme sound books available today, all from Cali’s Books!

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Most Frequently Asked Questions About Toddler Books

What kind of books do toddlers read?

Toddlers read all types of books! All children are different and it may take a little time to find exactly what kind of books they want to read. Show your children books about the subjects they are interested in and they will show you what they like.


What kind of books are good for older toddlers?

Older toddlers can handle more complex topics and books that give instructions. Keep in mind that these books should be geared towards their interests and their skillsets. Children are more likely to read if it is about a subject matter they find interesting!


My toddler has no patience with books? What can I do to get her interested?

The right book will get your toddler interested in reading. I would suggest that you spend some time with your toddler and ask them questions in regards to their interests. Why do they like the things they do? What is it they find the most exciting and intriguing? With these answers, you can find a few books that may pique their interest and move forward from there. It may take some trial and error but the end result is worth it!

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You Aren’t Only Reading, You Are Creating Memories

As a parent, you have a small window of time to make memories and teach your children important skills as they are young. Spending time reading and helping them develop these healthy habits is only available for a short window of time. Make the most of it!

At Cali’s Books, we know this time is precious and we strive to make products that enhance these experiences as a family. A love for reading and exploring may be the best gift you can give a child. Our books are meant to play a crucial role in this process. Mostly, we want you to have amazing memories and great times with your kids, reading books and using your imagination to its fullest extent. Happy reading!

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Cali's Books, founder, about us, why I love books, children's books

Hi! I'm Cali, Founder of Cali's Books

“I’ve loved books since childhood and wanted to transmit this enthusiasm to my children”

I'm a mom of two young children who trained as an engineer and worked in investment banking and at Disney. A French of Caribbean origin (Martinique to be precise!), I grew up in Paris. Los Angeles is now the place I call home!

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