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Must-Read Children’s Classics Books

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There are so many amazing classic books out there that you’re sure to find the perfect book to read to your child or the perfect book for them to enjoy on their own. For a lot of these, there are also beautiful illustrated editions if you’re looking for a mix of picture books and chapter books.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s adventures in wonderland is a very well-known classic children’s book by this point. But, I personally consider it one that I wouldn’t mind reading again.

By this point, we all know that Alice fell don’t the rabbit hole, but I still think this book is incredibly enjoyable, even if you’ve seen all the movies. Truly, I don’t think there’s a single movie I’ve seen that is all that close to the book itself.

For adults, this book and through the looking glass are covered in episodes of the Barely Bookish podcast. So, if you’re wanting to relive the stories you enjoyed when you were a child now that you’re an adult that may be for you.

Little Women

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott is a book about four little girls growing up and learning morals. I think it’s a great book for kids, but if you’re an adult who wants to explore classic literature by starting with children’s classics, I feel that this book ultimately talks down to you a lot.

However, if you read this as a kid previously, I think you’ll get a lot more enjoyment out of this book. You can also listen to the full discussion of this book on the Barely Bookish podcast.

The Secret Garden

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett follows our main character, Mary Lennox, as she discovers a secret garden in her uncle’s estate.

There are some simply beautiful illustrated versions of this story, and it definitely allows kids to enjoy the wonder of a new place alongside the main character.

Black Beauty

Black Beauty by Anne Sewell has been added to my must-read for everyone. While we all love our animal friends, I think getting to read a book from Beauty’s point of view really captures exactly what horses were going through at that time. It’s a great way for kids to understand the emotions animals have as well as bond with a horse a bit, which is an experience most people don’t get to have.

These chapters are super quick and easy to digest, making them perfect for bedtime or as a new chapter book for the little ones. If you haven’t read this as an adult yet, I highly recommend reading it. Realistically, it’s so quick it shouldn’t take you much more than a day.

This book is absolutely amazing. This book was also discussed on the Barely Bookish podcast, so make sure to give it a listen.

Peter Pan

While most of us have probably seen the Disney movie by this point, the book itself has to be added to your list. This is a story that both kids and adults alike will enjoy reading. It’s the perfect adventure series that still ends up with a mostly happy ending.

On the Barely Bookish podcast, I discussed this with Rebecca F. Kenney who wrote Wendy Darling, an adult Peter Pan retelling that is available on Kindle Unlimited. Make sure to give the episodes a listen as well as enjoy her books as well!

The Jungle Book

The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling focuses on wild animals in the jungle and a “man-cub” named Mowgli. This also has a Disney adaptation of the novel, which we get a lot of great music from.

Whether you’re trying to find classics to read with your kids, or you’re trying to get into classic literature by starting with kid’s books, these books are great options.

Also, if you like classic literature, be sure to check out the Barely Bookish podcast! We talk about classic and modern books to see if they are enjoyable for the modern reader.

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