Children's Authors' Favorite Books of All Time

Children's book authors such as Kate DiCamillo and Jeff Kinney reveal their favorite classic children's books, including titles like Charlotte's Web, The Velveteen Rabbit, and Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing.

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Charlotte’s Web

Peter Ardito

Charlotte’s Web

“My favorite then and now is E. B. White’s Charlotte’s Web (ages 8 to 12). It’s a constant reminder for me of the power of words and love!” —Kate DiCamillo, author of Raymie Nightingale, Flores and Ulysses, and The Tale of Despereaux

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The Velveteen Rabbit

Peter Ardito

The Velveteen Rabbit

“When I was young, my family’s book collection was small and seemed to be filled with rabbits: Pat the Bunny, The Runaway Bunny, and Goodnight Moon. For me, The Velveteen Rabbit (ages 3 to 7) stood out. This may have been partly due to its length for a picture book—it gave me more time alone with my mom, tucked up under her arm.” —Heidi Schultz, author of Hook’s Revenge

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Ramona and Her Father

Peter Ardito

Ramona and Her Father

“I loved Beverly Cleary, especially her Ramona books. Ramona Quimby’s dad and mine both smoked. Ramona and Her Father (ages 8 to 12) gave me the idea to steal my father’s cigarettes and replace them with rolled-up messages about the dangers of tobacco. A few years later, my dad quit smoking. I like to think that Ramona and I had something to do with that.” —Kate Messner, author of The Seventh Wish

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Happy Birthday to You!

Peter Ardito

Happy Birthday to You!

“When I was little, I loved Dr. Seuss’s books, especially Happy Birthday to You! (ages 5 to 9). It’s fun, it’s colorful, but there’s also a fascinating existential, powerful statement right in the middle of this children’s book: You are you!” —Gene Leun Yang, author of American Born Chinese

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Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

Peter Ardito

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

“My favorite writer was Judy Blume, and my favorite book was Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing (ages 8 to 12) because I could see myself in Peter Hatcher. Blume’s talent was in telling ordinary stories that were extraordinary.” —Jeff Kinney, author of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series 

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The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes

Peter Ardito

The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes

“Growing up in rural Australia with a single mother, I loved reading The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes, by DuBose Heyward (ages 4 to 7). It showed me it’s possible to be a mother and have a career, and to defy people’s expectations of a country girl. The pictures by Marjorie Flack made me want to draw, and the book made me want to be brave, clever, kind.” —Sophie Blackall, illustrator of Finding Winnie

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The Black Cauldron

Peter Ardito

The Black Cauldron

“The book that turned me into a total bookworm was Lloyd Alexander’s The Black Cauldron (ages 8 to 12). It speaks so perfectly to what it feels like to be a kid—how it sometimes seemed that everything exciting was happening just outside your reach.” —Jennifer L. Holm, author of Turtle in Paradise and The Fourteenth Goldfish