Children’s Picture Books to Gift This Fall
If you’re looking to get an early start on your holiday shopping, or are looking for the perfect birthday gift for one of the little ones in your life, look no further. We’ve rounded up five children’s picture books that Hidden Gems ARC readers have recently read and adored. With delightful illustrations and touching messages they can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Consider adding these titles to your shopping list the next time you’re buying for a child you love!
Mia and Nattie: One Great Team! by Marlene M. Bell
With an astounding 4.8 average star rating and over 80 reviews on Amazon, Mia and Nattie is an adorable read-aloud picture book for children who love animals from award-winning writer and sheep breeder Marlene M. Bell.
“This was a beautiful children’s book that provides a lovely story of friendship, family, and responsibility,” writes She Just Loves Books in their 5-star review. “Mia and Nattie’s relationship shows a beautiful bond and understanding between a girl and her sheep. Nattie is a sheep that was born a little different than the other sheep. Mia sees something special in Nattie and takes care of her, watching her flourish, and noticing a special gift that Nattie has. I thought this was such a cute story. Mia and Nattie had a lovely relationship, and I enjoyed Mia’s persistence in helping Nattie. The story is well-written, and something that children will enjoy. My daughter loved reading this story and was very invested in what was happening! The illustrations are bright and colorful. I thought the illustrator did a great job making the story come to life!”
M.M. raves in their 5-star review, “Mia and Nattie: One Great Team! by Marlene M. Bell is an adorable picture book about friendship, compassion, and helping others. The story of Mia and Nattie is a great example of overcoming obstacles and how to treat others with compassion and kindness. Mia could have easily let her grandma sell Nattie to the neighbors, but she knew that Nattie could thrive on their farm and be a good sheep just like the rest. She just needed to figure out how… …Mia and Nattie: One Great Team! would make a great addition to your child’s or school library, and it’s perfect for themed lessons on friendship and helping others. It’s a heartwarming read from start to finish!”
Where Is My Little Unicorn? by Ingo Blum
The vivid color illustrations and the funny seek-and-find story make for an entertaining and educational experience in this dual-language story. The text is simple enough to grab your kids’ attention, with lots of repetitions that give it rhythm. Kids will learn different places, objects, simple questions, and answers, but mostly they will be happy when Lily the unicorn appears from time to time.
AER Creatives says in their 5-star review, “What a cute and unusual book! The illustrations are fantastic! I love the questions to get kids thinking and engage them with the activity. The coloring book at the end of the book keeps the children occupied for hours. Highly recommend it to those who want to challenge their children in multiple languages.”
“I’m definitely going to look for more bilingual books for us to read and enjoy watching my grandson embrace other languages,” explains Tricia S. in her 5-star review. “My five year old grandson and I have been reading together since he was born. So I am always looking for new books to expand his ever growing mind. I loved the idea that this book was in English and German because it would give him a chance to experience another language. It also brought back memories of my childhood when my mother would find bilingual books for me to read. What’s wonderful about the way the book is written is each page is only a few sentences long and the English version is written directly above the German. We would read one and then the other right after. Most of the sentences were questions and I was so excited when my grandson asked me how to say yes or no in German. He really enjoyed not only the story itself but also repeating it in another language. Throughout the book you are asked to find the unicorn and my grandson would get so excited answering the questions in English and German. The illustrations are just adorable. When we were done he had to run and tell his daddy all about the book and how to say things in German. I think this book would be great for anyone with little ones. It would also be a great beginner book for German learners as well.”
The Moonlit Dragon by Cynthia Star
With an impressive 4.7 average star rating on Amazon, Cynthia Star delivers part 2 in her magical series of children’s picture books. The Moonlit Dragon will keep kids on the edge of their seats with a thrilling moonlight dragon race, while teaching valuable lessons about hard work, diligence, and the value of friendship.
“This is an imaginative story that is creatively written and beautifully illustrated!” raves Erica L.C. in her 5-star review. “It includes inspiring messages about the importance of hard-work, perseverance and helping others. I loved that there is a page at the end with a dragon for coloring and a place to give it a name and superpower. A great way to promote creative thinking and artistic expression for kids!”
Dee writes in their 5-star review, “This second story was a perfect continuation from book 1. Cynthia Starr writes a lovely readable story (my 7 year old granddaughter whipped through it) that gently relays the importance of friendship and perseverance. The illustrations are so intense in color that reading it on a computer or Fire makes it look practically 3-D. The list of dragon names and coloring page at the end of the book is a bonus! Looking forward to book 3!”
The Whale Who Felt A Little Blue by Isla Wynter
With an fabulous 4.8 star average on Amazon, this lovingly illustrated picture book gently introduces children to the symptoms of depression and gives advice on how to help others who’re feeling blue.
“Really great book for children and parents!” writes Jessica H. in her 5-star review, “The Whale Who Felt A Little Blue is about a whale named Luka who occasionally deals with depression. It shows his emotions and his feelings and how sometimes he’s just not happy. It also shows what can be done to help support friends and family who go through this. This book would be really great for parents to help children navigate their own emotions and for them to be able to identify how they’re feeling. I read this with my own children and we had a really great discussion about our feelings and how we might work through heavy things like sadness and depression. The illustrations were really great, the mermaid concept was well liked by my daughter, the helpful list was another great discussion topic and it all just made for a great book. I would definitely recommend this to parents!”
Edna H. explains in her 5-star review, “This is a wonderful short story book for young readers to read that explains what can be done to help a friend when that friend is not OK. I liked how the book explained in very easy to understand terms steps that friends can take to help their friend out who is not feeling OK. Luka is a blue whale that even though he has friends in that very big ocean he feels alone and sad. Jenny talks with a wise mermaid that educates Jenny on the steps that she can take to help Luka and this book is written so early readers around the age of 6-10 years old can understand the meaning behind this book. Well done. Ordering for my grandchildren to have in their home library.”
Belluna’s Big Adventure in the Sky by Once Upon a Dance
With an astounding 4.9 average star rating on Amazon, the quirky, whimsical adventure of self-discovery in Belluna’s Big Adventure was created by an award-winning dance instructor, partnered with her award-winning, professional ballet-dancer daughter.
“Belluna’s Big Adventure is a profound story about being different and embracing those differences,” raves Chelsea in her 5-star review. “Bellaluna and her family members have some unique physical attributes that often cause challenges in their lives. When a storm blows in and carries Bellaluna away, she has to adapt and make the best of a bad situation. Bellaluna adapts and learns that while things sometimes seem scary they always get better. This is a beautiful story with a lovely and important message. The Dance-It-Out! Collection of books incorporates physical movement to reinforce the lesson and get kids moving. It is the perfect way to get some energy out before bedtime. The illustrations in this book are absolutely stunning! The colors are rich and beautiful and make this amazing book even more enjoyable! Grab this one! The whole family will love it!”
“This is an adorable story that is lots of fun and encourages movement!” writes Shandra B. in her 5-star review. “My three year old daughter loved being a ballerina to dance out the story. She especially loved the ice skating and storm when she could roll on the ground (she also made up her own moves). Not only are there dance moves to do on every page to act out the story, but it portrays a great message of loving who you are and being brave. Great for all ages!