100 books every child should read

I was surfing the internet, with nothing particular in mind, when I suddenly came across a list of books “100 books every child should read”. Now as we specialize in children’s books I thought lets have a look through and see
a) How many titles I am familiar with
b) How many titles we have in stock
c) How many titles I have actually read

Then I suddenly thought of our blog, and the common questions we get from customers who are looking for a Christening present or a Birthday present but don’t know what to get! It normally involves listing lots of titles – just to get the response ‘no’, ‘not quite’, or ‘not appropriate’… but we normally get there in the end. Well, anyway, here is the list of books as originally appeared in the Telegraph (British newspaper).

Early Years

The Twits, by Roald Dahl

Burglar Bill, by Janet and Allan Ahlberg

The Tiger Who Came To Tea, by Judith Kerr

Where the Wild Things Are, by Maurice Sendak

The Tale of Samuel Whiskers, by Beatrix Potter

Yertle the Turtle, by Dr Seuss

Fungus the Bogeyman, by Raymond Briggs

The Story of the Little Mole Who Knew It Was None Of His Business, by Werner Holzwarth and Wolf Erlbruch

The Cat in the Hat, by Dr Seuss

Room on the Broom, by Julia Donaldson

The Very Hungry Caterpillar, by Eric Carle

Charlotte’s Web, by EB White

The Story of Babar, by Jean de Brunhoff

Winnie-the-Pooh, by AA Milne, illustrated by EH Shepard

Middle years

Stig of the Dump, by Clive King

Ballet Shoes, by Noel Streatfeild

Howl’s Moving Castle, by Diana Wynne Jones

Just So Stories, by Rudyard Kipling

The Borrowers, by Mary Norton

Struwwelpeter, by Heinrich Hoffman

The Magic Faraway Tree, by Enid Blyton

Danny, the Champion of the World, by Roald Dahl

George’s Marvellous Medicine, by Roald Dahl

Underwater Adventure, by Willard Price

Tintin in Tibet, by Hergé

The Complete Brothers Grimm Fairy Tales

Erik the Viking, by Terry Jones, illustrated by Michael Foreman

When the Wind Blows, by Raymond Briggs

Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats, by TS Eliot

The Iron Man, by Ted Hughes

The Owl and the Pussycat, by Edward Lear

The Wind in the Willows, by Kenneth Grahame

The Worst Witch Collection, by Jill Murphy

Peter Pan, by JM Barrie

Mr Majeika, by Humphrey Carpenter

The Water Babies, by Charles Kinglsey

A Little Princess, by Frances Hodgson Burnett

I’m The King of the Castle, by Susan Hill

The Wave, by Morton Rhue

Pippi Longstocking, by Astrid Lindgren

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, by Roald Dahl

Bambert’s Book of Missing Stories, by Reinhardt Jung

The Firework-maker’s Daughter, by Philip Pullman

Tom’s Midnight Garden, by Philippa Pearce

The Phantom Tollbooth, by Norton Juster

The Silver Sword, by Ian Serrallier

Cue for Treason, by Geoffrey Trease

The Sword in the Stone, by TH White

A Wizard of Earthsea, by Ursula K LeGuin

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, by JK Rowling

The Chronicles of Narnia Box Set, by CS Lewis

His Dark Materials Box Set, by Philip Pullman

The BFG, by Roald Dahl

Swallows and Amazons, by Arthur Ransome

Clarice Bean, Don’t Look Now, by Lauren Child

The Railway Children, by E Nesbit

The Selfish Giant, by Oscar Wilde

Black Beauty, by Anna Sewell

Just William, by Richmal Crompton

Jennings Goes to School, by Anthony Buckeridge

Comet in Moominland, by Tove Jansson

The Bad Beginning, by Lemony Snicket

Teen Years

Call of the Wild, by Jack London

Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, by Lewis Carroll

The Outsiders, by SE Hinton

I Capture the Castle, by Dodie Smith

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase, by Joan Aiken

To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee

Great Expectations, by Charles Dickens

The Owl Service, by Alan Garner

The Hound of the Baskervilles, by Arthur Conan Doyle

Wuthering Heights, by Emily Bronte

The Diary of a Young Girl, by Anne Frank

Roll of Thunder, Hear my Cry, by Mildred D Taylor

A Kestrel for a Knave, by Barry Hines

The Hobbit, by JRR Tolkien

War Horse, by Michael Morpurgo

Beowulf, by Michael Morpurgo

King Solomon’s Mines, by H Rider Haggard

Kim, by Rudyard Kipling

The Road of Bones, by Anne Fine

Frenchman’s Creek, by Daphne Du Maurier

Treasure Island, by RL Stevenson

Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott

Anne of Green Gables, by L M Montgomery

Junk, by Melvin Burgess

Cider With Rosie, by Laurie Lee

The Go-Between by LP Hartley

The Rattle Bag, edited by Seamus Heaney and Ted Hughes

The Song of Hiawatha, by H W Longfellow

Watership Down, by Richard Adams

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, by Mark Twain

True Grit, by Charles Portis

Holes, by Louis Sachar

Lord of the Flies, by William Golding

My Family and Other Animals, by Gerald Durrell

Coraline, by Neil Gaiman

Carrie’s War, by Nina Bawden

The Story of Tracy Beaker, by Jacqueline Wilson

The Lantern Bearers, by Rosemary Sutcliffe

Well, how many have you read? Was your favourite there? and which titles are missing?

What surprises me is there are no books by W.E. Johns of Biggles fame! But having said that I would not know which one to choose. Also there is only one Enid Blyton book, what about the Famous Five series…. Well, that is the trouble with these lists – not everybody is going to agree!

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12 Responses to 100 books every child should read

  1. Sarah T M Bell says:

    What Katy Did – Susan Coolidge
    The Ship that Flew – Hilda Lewis
    Hans Andersen – Fairy Tales
    TheLegion of the Ninth – Rosemary Sutcliff

    How could these be missed?!!

  2. Sarah Buttimore says:

    Great list.
    However definately missing The Famous Five on the list.
    Another must is The mog the Cat series and the light house keeper
    Some great ideas though on ones to look out for

  3. Chris Gallagher says:

    I think that the recent series of Skullduggery Pleasant books by Derek Landy are well worth a look.

  4. Vera says:

    A Christmas Carol.
    A Tale of Two Cities
    Little Women

  5. Janie B Jones says:

    No Jane Austen? My favourite is Persuasion. Much more relevant when considering family pressures and more readable than Wuthering Heights.

  6. Sheila Kirby says:

    The Treasure Seekers & Shadow The Sheepdog both by Enid Blyton , aswell as The Island of Adventure etc.
    Any of the Malcolm Saville books set in Rye & Shropshire & A Traveller in Time by Alice Uttley.
    Always difficult to cater for everyone’s taste but a fairly comprehensive list.

  7. Jenny Colborne says:

    Essential for the middle years: Susan Cooper’s “The Dark is Rising” sequence (5 books)

  8. Jennifer M Toombs says:

    Oh dear: my very favourite children’s book is not on the list: ‘The Secret Garden’ by Frances Hodgson Burnett! This is one of the most beautiful and moving children’s books ever written, and the message is universal – one of tremendous hope and renewal. Please – can this be included in future listings?

  9. Kirk Duncan says:

    I am David’ by Anne Holm is one of the most moving childrens books I’ve ever read and I can recommend it on many levels but primarily as a classic piece of fiction, which contains a long list of life lessons.

  10. Lily says:

    Love these except what about the books by Rick Riordan?!?!?

  11. Marjorie Shackleton says:

    Mystery series by Enid Blyton especially Mystery of the Burnt Cottage, Disappearing Cat, Missing necklace, Invisible Thief

  12. Mary Edwards says:

    I don’t believe I saw in the lists “The Hobbit” or the Ring Trilogy.

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