Books I Want My Kids to Read One Day

Here’s a list of ten books I want my boys to read and hopefully enjoy.  I hope everyone does their own list and lets me know because I would love suggestions.  When my husband was a boy, his father read to him every night, starting with picture books and going into books like The Hobbit.  So everyone find some time to do the list (looking at you, Outside Voice), and no cheating by putting The Bible, The Torah, The Qur’an because we ALL want our kids to read our religious texts.  That goes for homework too. ( I like to say for the record that when ever I publish this post, WordPress helpfully removes all the italics and bullet points.)

Hungry, Hungry Sharks by Joanne Cole.  Ok, I’m a bit sentimental with this book because it was the first book I read by myself.  I would like my kids to read it so they’re not scared of sharks and know that you can find all the answers in books


A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle.  I hated reading when I was growing up; it was this book that made me change my mind.  It was a great story and theme, and if they like this one, they’ll want to finish the series.


Greek myths (or The Iliad or The Odyssey by Homer) I loved reading mythology growing up.  Reading the Greek myths especially will give my kids a frame work to understanding Western literature, art, music, and even thought.


Dracula by Bram Stoker (or Frankenstein’s Monster by Mary Shelley {or Little Women by Louisa May Alcott or Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë if I have a girl})  Since I wasn’t a reader, I was completely against the thought of reading the classics, but luckily I had a teacher who was determined to make us readers.  The whole idea is if you can get them to like a classic, you can get them to read more in search for another good book.


Go Ask Alice by Anonymous.  This book is always on the top ten banned list.  It is a moving diary of a teenage female drug addict.  It scared me straight.  I’m a firm believer that the truth is more powerful than threats or fantasy.


Number the Stars by Lois Lowry.  This is a great story about Nazi Denmark and the heroism of the people of Denmark to spirit away the Jewish population.  Since it is told through the eyes of children, it is very easy to relate.


I Never Promised You a Rose Garden by Joanne Greenberg.  Another hard hitting novel.  This one is about a teenage girl’s journey through mental illness; it taught me not to take for granted my life.


Brave New World by Aldous Huxley.  I like this book, even though a lot of people I know didn’t, but it showed me that sometimes the hero is not a hero and that we all have to strive to be better than ourselves.


The Stand by Stephen King.  I would like to say this is his greatest work, but I haven’t read it all yet.  After reading this, I knew King would go down as a brilliant writer.  I thought this was a great story illustrating the goodness and evil in humankind.


The Five Languages of Love by Gary Chapman.  This book teaches people that we all show love in different ways and that to love someone you have to “speak” it in their language. 

Now I am sure there are dozens more, but those are my top ten.  My husband has his own list including Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls and The Fellowship of the Ring series by J.R.R. Tolkien.

5 Responses to “Books I Want My Kids to Read One Day”

  1. Otto Mann Says:

    You should add the Alchemist by Pablo Coelho. You want your kids to follow their dreams!

  2. sandysays1 Says:

    Understanding human nature is a good thing. Your children will have to put up their own kind in a kind of “life sentence.” Though written a few years back, “Tom Sawyer” is timeless, as is “To Kill a Mocking Bird.” Put those on your to do lists. Ever use to do lists? Visit me at for a sure fire way to be sure those to do lists get used. And have a couple laughs.

  3. Gibby Says:

    Great list! I just posted a list of my fave books after reading outside voice, but I’ve never thought of listing books I want my kids to read. Very interesting. I love that you listed Dracula, which I grudgingly read for book club but ended up loving it. I’ll have to give this list some time, but two come to mind…Little Women (oops, I just noticed you listed that but I have 2 daughters so this is a must) and Of Mice and Men.

  4. faemom Says:

    First off, Thank you everyone for posting more books.

    Otto Mann: Thanks for the suggestion. I’ll have to check it out,

    sandysays1: I completely forgot about any Twain. “To Kill a Mocking Bird” is on my husband’s list; it’s his favorite book. 🙂

    Gibby: I read Dracula because it’s the originiator of all vampire fiction, but I figure most kids would like reading it. Oh, Of Mice and Men is a great one. Thanks for reminding me!

  5. scrumptious Says:

    Hi there,
    I found your blog through WordPress’s “possibly related posts” feature and I love your list!

    I just made my own list of my top ten children’s chapter books and some of my runner-ups and favorite kid’s authors.

    If you haven’t read Holes by Louis Sachar you might want to give it a read and see if it would be something you’d want to share with your sons. It is an incredible book! And what about the Chronicles of Narnia? I read those first with my mom and then many times over in my childhood. And check out The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet by Eleanor Cameron. If you liked A Wrinkle in Time I think you’ll like the Mushroom Planet books, too.

    I love that you have Greek myths on there. I devoured those when I was young and have been grateful ever since. References from those stories show up in every aspect of our culture, and it really did make me a more in-tune, better-educated person to have that background. I didn’t read the Odyssey until middle school, and it was a little hard to get through then, but when I read it again in high school I loved it madly!

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