An Award-Winning Book Club for Kids
Shop Now

Heroes: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best children's books about heroes?

Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to heroes. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about heroes.

Our list includes board books, picture books, and chapter books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid.

We hope this list of kids books about heroes can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book!

Share this list
Add to list
Robert the Rose Horse
Written by Joan Heilbroner & illustrated by P. D. Eastman
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

Illus. in color. An allergy to roses causes this city horse many problems until, one time, his sneezes save the day.

Add to list
The Ruins of Gorlan
Written by John Flanagan
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 12-18

They have always scared him in the past—the Rangers, with their dark cloaks and shadowy ways. The villagers believe the Rangers practice magic that makes them invisible to ordinary people. And now 15-year-old Will, always small for his age, has been chosen as a Ranger’s apprentice. What he doesn’t yet realize is that the Rangers are the protectors of the kingdom. Highly trained in the skills of battle and surveillance, they fight the battles before the battles reach the people. And as Will is about to learn, there is a large battle brewing. The exiled Morgarath, Lord of the Mountains of Rain and Night, is gathering his forces for an attack on the kingdom. This time, he will not be denied. . . .

Add to list
Brave. Black. First.: 50+ African American Women Who Changed the World
Written by Cheryl Willis Hudson and Erin K. Robinson & illustrated by Erin K. Robinson
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-11

Published in collaboration with the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, discover over fifty remarkable African American women whose unique skills and contributions paved the way for the next generation of young people. Perfect for fans of Rad Women Worldwide, Women in Science, and Girls Think of Everything. Harriet Tubman guided the way.Rosa Parks sat for equality.Aretha Franklin sang from the soul.Serena Williams bested the competition.Michelle Obama transformed the White House.Black women everywhere have changed the world! Published in partnership with curators from the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, this illustrated biography compilation captures the iconic moments of fifty African American women whose heroism and bravery rewrote the American story for the better. They were fearless. They were bold. They were game changers.

Add to list
The Bravest Dog Ever: The True Story of Balto
Written by Natalie Standiford & illustrated by Donald Cook
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Illus. in full color. “A compelling account, told in easy-to-read format, ofa sled dog who led his team over 53 miles of Alaska wilderness to delivermedicine during an outbreak of diphtheria in 1925. Cook’s softly coloredillustrations enhance the drama of a proud and heroic story that young readersare sure to enjoy.”– “School Library Journal.”

Add to list
Fairest of All
Written by Sarah Mlynowski
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

The first installment of Sarah Mylowski’s New York Times bestselling series! Be the bravest of them all . . . Once upon a time my brother and I were normal kids. The next minute? The mirror in our basement slurped us up and magically transported us inside Snow White’s fairy tale. I know it sounds crazy, but it’s true. But hey – we’re heroes! We stopped Snow White from eating the poisoned apple. Hooray! Or not. If Snow White doesn’t die, she won’t get to meet her prince. And then she won’t get her happy ending. Oops. Now it’s up to us to: - Avoid getting poisoned- Sneak into a castle- Fix Snow White’s story But Snow White’s REAL happy ending might not be quite what we expected . . .

Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
  • I Am the Messenger - Meet Ed Kennedy–underage cabdriver, pathetic cardplayer, and useless at romance. He lives in a shack with his coffee-addicted dog, the Doorman, and he’s hopelessly in love with his best friend, Audrey. His life is one of peaceful routine and incompetence, until he inadvertently stops a bank robbery. That’s when the first Ace arrives. That’s when Ed becomes the messenger. . . . Chosen to care, he makes his way through town helping and hurting (when necessary), until only one question remains: Who’s behind Ed’s mission? Winner of the 2003 Children’s Book Council Book of the Year Award in Australia, I Am the Messenger is a cryptic journey filled with laughter, fists, and love. “From the Hardcover edition.”

  • The Doughnut Kingdom - What happens when an evil queen gets her hands on an ancient force of destruction? World domination, obviously. The seven kingdoms of Dreamside need a legendary hero. Instead, they’ll have to settle for Cucumber, a nerdy magician who just wants to go to school. As destiny would have it, he and his way more heroic sister, Almond, must now seek the Dream Sword, the only weapon powerful enough to defeat Queen Cordelia’s Nightmare Knight. Can these bunny siblings really save the world in its darkest hour? Sure, why not? Adapted from the popular webcomic series, Cucumber Quest, The Doughnut Kingdom is the first graphic novel of a clever, adorable, and hilarious four-volume heroic adventure that is sure to make you hungry for sweets and action.

  • The Thirteenth Fairy - Real life and fairy tales collide in Never After: The Thirteenth Fairy, book one in the new middle-grade Never After series from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Descendants series, Melissa de la Cruz. Nothing ever happens in Filomena Jefferson-Cho’s sleepy little suburban town of North Pasadena. The sun shines every day, the grass is always a perfect green, and while her progressive school swears there’s no such thing as bullying, she still feels bummed out. But one day, when Filomena is walking home on her own, something strange happens. Filomena is being followed by Jack Stalker, one of the heroes in the Thirteenth Fairy, a series of books she loves about a brave girl and her ragtag group of friends who save their world from an evil enchantress. She must be dreaming, or still reading a book. But Jack is insistent–he’s real, the stories are real, and Filomena must come with him at once! Soon, Filomena is thrust into the world of evil fairies and beautiful princesses, sorcerers and slayers, where an evil queen drives her ruthless armies to destroy what is left of the Fairy tribes. To save herself and the kingdom of Westphalia, Filomena must find the truth behind the fairytales and set the world back to rights before the cycle of sleep and destruction begins once more.

  • The Crayon Man: The True Story of the Invention of Crayola Crayons - Celebrating the inventor of the Crayola crayon! This gloriously illustrated picture book biography tells the inspiring story of Edwin Binney, the inventor of one of the world’s most beloved toys. A perfect fit among favorites like The Day the Crayons Quit and Balloons Over Broadway. purple mountains’ majesty, mauvelous, jungle green, razzmatazz… What child doesn’t love to hold a crayon in their hands? But children didn’t always have such magical boxes of crayons. Before Edwin Binney set out to change things, children couldn’t really even draw in color. Here’s the true story of an inventor who so loved nature’s vibrant colors that he found a way to bring the outside world to children – in a bright green box for only a nickel! With experimentation, and a special knack for listening, Edwin Binney and his dynamic team at Crayola created one of the world’s most enduring, best-loved childhood toys – empowering children to dream in COLOR!

Add to list
She Persisted Around the World
Written by Chelsea Clinton & illustrated by Alexandra Boiger
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

“Introduces readers to a group of thirteen incredible women who have shaped history all across the globe”–Front jacket flap.

Add to list
A Little Chicken
Written by Tammi Sauer & illustrated by Dan Taylor
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Dot is a small chick who’s scared of lots of things: wolves, bears, the occasional lawn ornament. But when an egg rolls out of her mother’s nest, Dot must pluck up her courage to save the day–and her new sibling! Perfect for kids who need some encouragement to face the challenging world, this story proves that sometimes a big hero is just a little chicken.

Add to list
What Makes a Hero
Written by Pamela Bobowicz & illustrated by Eda Kaban
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Introduce the young reader in your life to the inimitable, expectation-destroying, glass ceiling-shattering, world-saving female Super Heroes of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, from Captain Marvel and Shuri to Gamora, Black Widow, Nebula, and more, in this beautifully-illustrated picture book aimed at the young reader set. Fans of all ages will be thrilled by this adventure that celebrates the strength, intelligence, and ingenuity of the women who are vital to MCU’s best stories, distilled into a child-friendly package.

Add to list
Let the Children March
Written by Monica Clark-Robinson & illustrated by Frank Morrison
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Under the leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King, children and teenagers march against segregation in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1963.

Add to list
The Undefeated
Written by Kwame Alexander & illustrated by Kadir Nelson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

The Newbery Award-winning author of THE CROSSOVER pens an ode to black American triumph and tribulation, with art from a two-time Caldecott Honoree.

Originally performed for ESPN’s The Undefeated, this poem is a love letter to black life in the United States. It highlights the unspeakable trauma of slavery, the faith and fire of the civil rights movement, and the grit, passion, and perseverance of some of the world’s greatest heroes. The text is also peppered with references to the words of Martin Luther King, Jr., Langston Hughes, Gwendolyn Brooks, and others, offering deeper insights into the accomplishments of the past, while bringing stark attention to the endurance and spirit of those surviving and thriving in the present. Robust back matter at the end provides valuable historical context and additional detail for those wishing to learn more.

Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
  • Dream Big, Little One - This beautifully illustrated book showcases women who changed the world. Featuring 18 trailblazing black women in American history, Dream Big, Little Leader is the irresistible board book adaptation of Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History. Among these women, you’ll find heroes, role models, and everyday women who did extraordinary things - bold women whose actions and beliefs contributed to making the world better for generations of girls and women to come. Whether they were putting pen to paper, soaring through the air or speaking up for the rights of others, the women profiled in these pages were all taking a stand against a world that didn’t always accept them. The leaders in this book may be little, but they all did something bigand amazing, inspiring generations to come.

  • Violet the Pilot - Violet is a science-loving girl inventor with a flair for the air! Fans of Ada Twist, Scientist and Rosie Revere, Engineer will love this classic underdog story by two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist Steve Breen. By the time she’s two years old, Violet Van Winkle can engineer nearly any appliance in the house. And by eight she’s building elaborate flying machines from scratch—mind-boggling contraptions such as the Tubbubbler, the Bicycopter, and the Wing-a-ma-jig. The kids at school tease her, but they have no idea what she’s capable of. Maybe she could earn their respect by winning the blue ribbon in the upcoming Air Show. Or maybe something even better will happen—something involving her best-ever invention, a Boy Scout troop in peril, and even the mayor himself!

  • This Is the Firefighter - The fire alarm sounds. The firefighter jumps in the truck and races to a daring rescue! Get ready for an adventure as Laura Godwin and Julian Hector celebrate one of our bravest everyday heroes in this board-book edition for little hands. Praise for This is the Firefighter (hardcover edition) “With its swift action, catchy verse, and appropriate palette (red, white, blue, and flame), this should find good use among preschool vehicle enthusiasts and new readers as well as in the ‘community helpers’ unit.” -The Horn Book

  • This Little Dreamer: An Inspirational Primer - Learn all about dreamers who changed history in this engaging and hopeful board book perfect for dreamers-in-training! In this sixth book in the This Little series, now even the youngest readers can learn all about important people in history who dared to dream big for a better future! Highlighting ten memorable dreamers who paved the way, parents and little ones alike will love this inspirational primer full of fun, age-appropriate facts and bold illustrations.

Add to list
Kid Normal and the Rogue Heroes
Written by Chris Smith and Greg James
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Since becoming Kid Normal, Murph Cooper and the Super Zeroes – fellow students with arguably less-than-useful talents like the ability to conjure tiny horses from thin air – have been catching bad guys all over the place. But being a hero isn’t easy, especially when you can’t tell anyone about your epic adventures and your classmates still don’t believe you’ve got what it takes. And then, far away in a top-secret prison, the world’s most feared supervillain breaks his thirty-year silence. His first words? “Bring Kid Normal to me!” This supervillain was responsible for stealing the powers from some of the greatest Heroes Alliance members of all time. Does Murph have what it takes to bring him down? With black-and-white illustrations throughout, this laugh-out-loud story proves that heroes come in all shapes and sizes.

Add to list
The Red Maze
Written by Alexis Siegel and Mark Siegel & illustrated by Boya Sun, Xanthe Bouma, and Matt Rockefeller
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

R. J. Palacio, #1 New York Times bestselling author of WONDER, hails this adventure series as Mind-blowingly beautiful. . . . A must-read.

Think Star Wars meets Avatar: The Last Airbender!

In book 3, Oona Lee is determined to light Moon Yatta’s beacon and continue her quest to save the galaxy. But reaching the red beacon means navigating an impossible maze of pipes and facing devious enemies at every turn. Luckily, her friend Jax Amboy has returned from his adventures transformed! Now he must confront the owner of his former starball team, a ruthless businessman who will stop at nothing to get his best player back on the field . . . and who can grant them access to the beacon. Meanwhile, Oona and An Tzu find a mysterious rebel leader and release a surprising power within Oona’s magic. Will they make it in time to stop the evil force seeking to rule the 5 Worlds?

Add to list
Elecopter
Written & illustrated by Michael Slack
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

A chant-along companion to Monkey Truck features a heroic, fire-fighting elephant who bravely patrols the skies above the Savannah with her fire-hose nose, putting out fires and rescuing her fellow animals.

Add to list
Circe
Written by Madeline Miller
chapter book
Recommend Ages: -

A bold and subversive retelling of the goddess’s story, this #1 New York Times bestseller is both epic and intimate in its scope, recasting the most infamous female figure from the Odyssey as a hero in her own right (Alexandra Alter, The New York Times). In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe is a strange child – not powerful, like her father, nor viciously alluring like her mother. Turning to the world of mortals for companionship, she discovers that she does possess power – the power of witchcraft, which can transform rivals into monsters and menace the gods themselves. Threatened, Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, where she hones her occult craft, tames wild beasts and crosses paths with many of the most famous figures in all of mythology, including the Minotaur, Daedalus and his doomed son Icarus, the murderous Medea, and, of course, wily Odysseus. But there is danger, too, for a woman who stands alone, and Circe unwittingly draws the wrath of both men and gods, ultimately finding herself pitted against one of the most terrifying and vengeful of the Olympians. To protect what she loves most, Circe must summon all her strength and choose, once and for all, whether she belongs with the gods she is born from, or the mortals she has come to love. With unforgettably vivid characters, mesmerizing language, and page-turning suspense, Circe is a triumph of storytelling, an intoxicating epic of family rivalry, palace intrigue, love and loss, as well as a celebration of indomitable female strength in a man’s world. #1 New York Times Bestseller – named one of the Best Books of the Year by NPR, the Washington Post, People, Time, Amazon, Entertainment Weekly, Bustle, Newsweek, the A.V. Club, Christian Science Monitor, Refinery 29, Buzzfeed, Paste, Audible, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Thrillist, NYPL, Self, Real Simple, Goodreads, Boston Globe, Electric Literature, BookPage, the Guardian, Book Riot, Seattle Times, and Business Insider.

Add to list
The Battle for Skandia
Written by John Flanagan
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 10-14

Still far from their homeland after escaping slavery in the icebound land of Skandia, Will and Evanlyn’s plans to return to Araluen are spoiled when Evanlyn is taken captive by a Temujai warrior. Though still weakened by the warmweed’s toxic effects, Will employs his Ranger training to locate his friend, but an enemy scouting party has him fatally outnumbered. Will is certain death is close at hand, until Halt and Horace make a daring, last-minute rescue. The reunion is cut short, however, when Halt makes a horrifying discovery: Skandia’s borders have been breached by the entire Temujai army. And Araluen is next in their sights. If two kingdoms are to be saved, an unlikely union must be made. Will it hold long enough to vanquish a ruthless new enemy? Or will past tensions spell doom for all?

Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
  • The Bad Guys in Attack of the Zittens - SOON TO BE A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE!I wish I’d had these books as a kid. Hilarious! – Dav Pilkey, creator of Captain Underpants and Dog Man They may look like Bad Guys, but these wannabe heroes are doing good deeds…whether you like it or not! This New York Times bestselling illustrated series is perfect for fans of Dog Man and Captain Underpants. It’s a zombie kitten apocalypse! Can the Bad Guys save the world from evil Dr. Marmalade’s meowing monsters?!? They’ll need help from foxy Agent Fox, a swampy secret zombie antidote, and the feistiest, toothiest, hungriest granny around. Get ready to watch the fur fly!

  • Legends of Zita the Spacegirl - A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLERBen Hatke brings back our intrepid space heroine for another delightful sci-fi/fantasy adventure. Zita is determined to find her way home to earth, following the events of the first book. But things are never simple, and certainly never easy, in space. Zita’s exploits from her first adventure have made her an intergalactic megastar! But she’s about to find out that fame doesn’t come without a price. And who can you trust when your true self is being eclipsed by your public persona, and you’ve got a robot doppelganger wreaking havoc . . . while wearing your face? Still, if anyone can find their way through this intractible mess of mistaken identity and alien invaders, it’s the indomitable Zita, in Legends of Zita the Spacegirl.Legends of Zita the Spacegirl is one of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Children’s Books of 2012.

  • Who Was Harriet Tubman? - Born a slave in Maryland, Harriet Tubman knew first-hand what it meant to be someone’s property; she was whipped by owners and almost killed by an overseer. It was from other field hands that she first heard about the Underground Railroad which she travelled by herself north to Philadelphia. Throughout her long life (she died at the age of ninety-two) and long after the Civil War brought an end to slavery, this amazing woman was proof of what just one person can do.

  • Cursed - The final installment in the beloved Fairy Tale Reform School series where the teachers are (former) villainsThe evil Rumplestiltskin is planning to cast a curse that will erase Enchantasia as the world knows it, and a fairy prophecy declares that Gilly Cobbler will play a key role. Never one to shy away from adventure, Gilly and her friends embark on an epic, swashbucklin journey to stop Stiltskin from getting the ingredients he needs before it’s too late.Gilly can’t help but wonder if it’s already too late for her beloved sister, Anna, who’s still a member of the villainous Stiltskin Squad, and will seemingly stop at nothing to thwart Gilly and her crew. Only by harnessing the skills she may have inherited from her fairy grandmother can Gilly stop Stiltskin and reunite her family. But with time running out and her fairy skills lying dormant, does Gilly have what it takes to prevent the evil curse and ensure a happily-ever-after for the Cobblers? Or will she lose Enchantasia and her friends forever?This series is perfect for read-alongs between parents and kids and engaging reluctant readers.

Add to list
The Super Life of Ben Braver
Written & illustrated by Marcus Emerson
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

An extra ordinary boy ends up at an extraordinary school for children with super powers in the first book in a new series from the author of Diary of a 6th Grade Ninja.

Add to list
My Life as a Ninja
Written by Janet Tashjian & illustrated by Jake Tashjian and Janet Tashjian
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

Book 6 in the bestselling My Life series! Derek Fallon has expanded his taste in cartoons to the world of manga and anime. Together with his friends Carly, Matt, and Umberto, Derek has fun learning about all the cool aspects of ninja culture. When someone starts vandalizing their school with graffiti of a mischievous troll-like figure, these ninjas-in-training are convinced they’ll be able to crack the case. But it turns out that being a ninja is a lot more work than they thought, and this adventure brings about new opportunities for Derek to embarrass himself. For once, can he be the hero that saves the day? A Christy Ottaviano Book

Add to list
Ricky Ricotta's Mighty Robot vs. the Unpleasant Penguins from Pluto
Written by Dav Pilkey & illustrated by Dan Santat
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

An out-of-this-world friendship adventure by Captain Underpants creator Dav Pilkey, with full-color art and mini comics by Caldecott Medalist Dan Santat.Ricky Ricotta and his Mighty Robot face off against a flock of flightless foes!Ricky and his Mighty Robot have made a mess. They’ve been mean to Cousin Lucy, and now they must make it up to her. But their surprise present for Lucy turns into a trap when President Penguin from Pluto plots to take over Earth. President Penguin is peeved because Pluto is no longer considered a real planet. Now he plans to make things very unpleasant for anyone who stands in his way. Can Ricky, Lucy, and their friends defeat this tiny terror and keep Squeakyville safe?

Add to list
Perseus and the Monstrous Medusa
Written by Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams & illustrated by Craig Phillips
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Perseus and the Olympians face off against the evil, nasty Medusa, who can turn them all to stone with just one look.

Add to list
North and South
Written by Gene Luen Yang and Michael Dante DiMartino & illustrated by Gurihiru
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-11

When Katara and Sokka return home to the Southern Water Tribe, they are shocked to find that it has gone from a small village to a bustling city! Malina, a Northerner, is behind the change and plans to unify the two groups, but Gilak, a Southerner, leads a fierce rebellion to stop her. In the face of these two opposing tribes, Katara will have to make peace with her nostalgia and distrust to save the home she loves from being permanently torn apart. This special, oversized edition of Avatar: the Last Airbender – North and South features volumes 1-3 with annotations by writer Gene Luen Yang and artists Gurihiru, as well as a sketchbook section with new, behind-the-scenes material!

Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
  • The Burning Bridge - Bracing for a final clash with the evil warlord Morgarath, the Rangers rally the kingdom’s allies, and Will is chosen, along with his friend Horace, as special envoys to nearby Celtica. But the simple mission soon takes an unsettling turn – the Celticans have disappeared, their town abandoned. The scheming hand of Morgarath, it seems, has been far from idle. He has found a way to bring his legions over the once impassible eastern mountains and is planning to ambush the king’s army in a rout. Now with help many miles away, Will and Horace are the only ones standing in the way of the dark lord’s plans.They have shown great skill and courage in their training, but how will they fare in the face of true evil?

  • City of the Plague God - Best-selling author Rick Riordan presents CITY OF THE PLAGUE GOD, an adventure based on ancient Mesopotamian mythology written by Sarwat Chadda, author of the Ash Mistry series. An epic worthy of Gilgamesh. Chadda brings attention to the less well-recognized mythology of ancient Mesopotamia with engaging humor and wit.–Kirkus ReviewsThirteen-year-old Sik wants a simple life going to school and helping at his parents’ deli in the evenings. But all that is blown to smithereens when Nergal comes looking for him, thinking that Sik holds the secret to eternal life.Turns out Sik is immortal but doesn’t know it, and that’s about to get him and the entire city into deep, deep trouble. Sik’s not in this alone. He’s got Belet, the adopted daughter of Ishtar, the goddess of love and war, on his side, and a former hero named Gilgamesh, who has taken up gardening in Central Park. Now all they have to do is retrieve the Flower of Immortality to save Manhattan from being wiped out by disease. To succeed, they’ll have to conquer sly demons, treacherous gods, and their own darkest nightmares. Featuring gods and goddesses, and importantly, Muslim heroes, this #OwnVoices tale eerily echoes our pandemic presents; but readers will find escape in the entertaining balance of an apocalyptic setting with irreverent humor.–School Library JournalLook for these other best-selling Rick Riordan Presents titles: Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani ChokshiThe Storm Runner by J. C. CervantesDragon Pearl by Yoon Ha LeeRace to the Sun by Rebecca RoanhorseTristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky by Kwame Mbalia

  • The Bad Guys in Intergalactic Gas - SOON TO BE A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE!I wish I’d had these books as a kid. Hilarious! – Dav Pilkey, creator of Captain Underpants and Dog Man They may look like Bad Guys, but these wannabe heroes are doing good deeds…whether you like it or not! This New York Times bestselling illustrated series is perfect for fans of Dog Man and Captain Underpants. The bad news? The world is ending. The good news? The Bad Guys are back to save it! Sure, they might have to borrow a rocket. And there might be something nasty in one of the spacesuits. And Mr. Piranha miiiight have eaten too many bean burritos. Surviving this mission may only be one small step for man, but it’s one giant leap for the Bad Guys.

  • Switched - The fourth installment in the beloved Fairy Tale Reform School series where the teachers are (former) villainsReform or relapse? Things at Fairy Tale Reform School are great. Rumpelstiltskin has been ousted, and everyone is buzzing about the fact that Beauty and Prince Sebastian (aka the Beast) have joined the teaching staff. Everyone, that is, except Gilly, who can’t seem to focus on anything but Anna. How is it that her beloved sister somehow went bad and joined up with Rump? And why doesn’t anyone seem to care? Sure, the Royal Court says they’re working on it, but they’ve got exactly nothing to show for it. But when new-kid Jack joins FTRS with tales of his own family being snatched by Rump, Gilly knows she’s in good company. Jack wants answers, just like Gilly. And if the Royal Court can’t get the job done, then maybe it’s time to break some rules…This series is perfect for read-alongs between parents and kids and engaging reluctant readers.

Add to list
The Hero's Guide to Being an Outlaw
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

The League of Princes returns in the hilariously epic conclusion to Christopher Healy’s hit series, which Kirkus Reviews called part screwball comedy, part sly wit, and all fun in a starred review!Prince Liam. Prince Frederic. Prince Duncan. Prince Gustav. You think you know those guys pretty well by now, don’t you? Well, think again. Posters plastered across the thirteen kingdoms are saying that Briar Rose has been murdered–and the four Princes Charming are the prime suspects. Now they’re on the run in a desperate attempt to clear their names. Along the way, however, they discover that Briar’s murder is just one part of a nefarious plot to take control of all thirteen kingdoms–a plot that will lead to the doorstep of an eerily familiar fortress for a final showdown with an eerily familiar enemy.

Add to list
Dionysus and the Land of Beasts
Written by Tracey West & illustrated by Craig Phillips
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Zeus and his friends discover another Olympian who might be able to help in their quest to defeat King Cronus in this Heroes in Training adventure.

With a clue from their trusty oracle, Pythia, Zeus and his Olympian friends are off to the “Land of Grapes,” where they discover a festival. The headline act is Dion and the Goat Guys, and Zeus has a funny feeling this Dion guy might be one of them. Athena points out that this Dion guy is the right age, and he’s definitely not acting like a regular kid. Finally, Dion and the Goat Guys take a break, and Zeus and the other Olympians approach him.

Zeus informs him that he and the others are Olympians, and they think Dion might be one too. Dion (short for Dionysus, he tells them) starts to brag that he wouldn’t be surprised, because he has awesome talents and magic powers. Before the Olympians can ask him about his powers, some of the crowd members start to throng the Olympians. Are they really Olympians? Are they really going to defeat King Cronus? Dion looks kind of peeved about this, and the next thing the Olympians know, they are in a field somewhere, puzzled and not sure what happened.

What kind of magical powers does this Dion kid actually have? And will he be more of a help—or a pain—in their ultimate quest to defeat King Cronus once and for all?

Add to list
The Bad Guys in the Big Bad Wolf
Written by Aaron Blabey
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

SOON TO BE A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE!I wish I’d had these books as a kid. Hilarious! – Dav Pilkey, creator of Captain Underpants and Dog Man They may look like Bad Guys, but these wannabe heroes are doing good deeds…whether you like it or not! This New York Times bestselling illustrated series is perfect for fans of Dog Man and Captain Underpants. When Mr. Wolf is blown up to Godzilla proportions, the Bad Guys find themselves in monster-sized trouble. They must figure out how to stop an alien invasion and get Wolfie back to his old self before the world is totally destroyed. Good thing they have the International League of Heroes on their side, and some newly honed superpowers ready to put to the test… Everyone’s favorite hero has become a menace to society! Can the Bad Guys save the day? You know it!

Add to list
The Bad Guys in the One?!
Written by Aaron Blabey
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

SOON TO BE A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE!I wish I’d had these books as a kid. Hilarious! – Dav Pilkey, creator of Captain Underpants and Dog Man They may look like Bad Guys, but these wannabe heroes are doing good deeds… whether you like it or not! This New York Times bestselling illustrated series is perfect for fans of Dog Man and Captain Underpants. Seriously, WHAT is going on with Snake?! Terrible powers have been revealed! Evil allies have materialized! Inter-dimensional doors have opened! Shady-looking cloaks have been purchased! What is his deal?! And that’s not all! Why does Agent Fox suddenly have a whole lot more backstory than we’d counted on?! Dang it! We need answers! WHAT IS GOING ON HERE?! Wolf and the gang are back. And things are worse than ever. Or badder than ever… if you think that sounds cooler and don’t have a problem with bad grammar. BAD GUYS #12 WILL MELT YOUR BRAIN…

Add to list
The Promise
Written by Gene Luen Yang & illustrated by Various and Gurihiru
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-11

Aang and Katara are working tirelessly for peace when an impasse between Fire Lord Zuko and Earth King Kuei over Fire Nation colonies within the borders of the Earth Nation threatens to plunge the world back into war! Meanwhile, Sokka must help Toph prepare her hapless first class of metalbending students to defend their school against a rival class of firebenders! * Written by Eisner winner and National Book Award nominee Gene Luen Yang (American Born Chinese).

Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
Add to list
  • A Boy and a Jaguar - 2015 Schneider Family Book Award Winner Alan loves animals, but the great cat house at the Bronx Zoo makes him sad. Why are they all alone in empty cages? Are they being punished? More than anything, he wants to be their champion–their voice–but he stutters uncontrollably. Except when he talks to animals…Then he is fluent.Follow the life of the man Time Magazine calls, “the Indiana Jones of wildlife conservation”as he searches for his voice and fulfills a promise to speak for animals, and people, who cannot speak for themselves. This real-life story with tender illustrations by Catia Chien explores truths not defined by the spoken word.

  • Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters - Former president Barack Obama delivers a tender, beautiful letter to his daughters in this picture book illustrated by the award-winning Loren Long (Otis) that’s made to be treasured! In this tender, beautiful letter to his daughters, President Barack Obama has written a moving tribute to thirteen groundbreaking Americans and the ideals that have shaped our nation. From the artistry of Georgia O’Keeffe, to the courage of Jackie Robinson, to the patriotism of George Washington, President Obama sees the traits of these heroes within his own children, and within all of America’s children. Breathtaking, evocative illustrations by award-winning artist Loren Long at once capture the personalities and achievements of these great Americans and the innocence and promise of childhood. This beautiful book celebrates the characteristics that unite all Americans, from our nation’s founders to generations to come. It is about the potential within each of us to pursue our dreams and forge our own paths. It is a treasure to cherish with your family forever.

  • The Icebound Land - Kidnapped after the fierce battle with Lord Morgarath, Will and Evanlyn are bound for Skandia as captives aboard a fearsome wolfship. Halt has sworn to rescue Will, and he will do anything to keep his promise–even defy his King. Expelled from the Rangers he has served so loyally, Halt is joined by Will’s friend Horace as he travels toward Skandia. On their way, they are challenged constantly by freelance knights–but Horace knows a thing or two about combat. Soon he begins to attract the attention of knights and warlords for miles around with his uncanny skill. Even so, will they be in time to rescue Will from a horrific life of slavery?

  • Eliot Jones, Midnight Superhero - All the grown-ups comment that Eliot is “such a quiet little thing,” unaware that at night, when the clock strikes midnight, he becomes a superhero, and now he has received his most urgent mission yet, to help a group of scientists prevent a giant meteor from crashing into Earth.

Add to list
Zeus and the Dreadful Dragon
Written by Tracey West & illustrated by Craig Phillips
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Zeus and his friends try to free Briar, Kottos, and Gyes from Tartarus so they can finally beat Cronus once and for all in this Heroes in Training adventure. The fourteen Olympians and Ron are headed toward Olympus. Ron is telling them the rumors that the Titans have all escaped Tartarus and are gearing up with Cronus for a final battle with the Olympians. When they reach the sea, Oceanus attacks them by surprise. They are almost washed away by a tidal wave when mysterious woman appears and saves them. It is Gaia, the wife of Uranus—and grandmother to Zeus and most of the Olympians. Gaia is on the side of the Olympians, partly because she believes that they will be better for the planet than Cronus, but also because she is angry with her son. He has imprisoned his three brothers: Briar, Kottos, and Gyes. She says if the Olympians free them from Tartarus, they will help the Olympians defeat Cronus. But can the three brothers be trusted? And can the Olympians defeat Cronus once and for all?

Add to list
I am Gandhi
Written & illustrated by Brad Meltzer
picture book
Recommend Ages: 10-14

As a young man in India, Gandhi saw firsthand how people were treated unfairly. Refusing to accept injustice, he came up with a brilliant way to fight back through quiet, peaceful protest. He used his methods in South Africa and India, where he led a nonviolent revolution that freed his country from British rule. Through his calm, steady heroism, Gandhi changed the lives of millions and inspired civil rights movements all over the world, proving that the smallest of us can be the most powerful.

Add to list
Captain Underpants and the Big, Bad Battle of the Bionic Booger Boy, Part 2: The Revenge of the Ridiculous Robo-Boogers
Written & illustrated by Dav Pilkey
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-10

Bionic boogers return in the seventh book in this #1 New York Times bestselling series by Dav Pilkey, the creator of Dog Man!

George and Harold thought they were beyond boogers. Their new pet, Sulu the Bionic Hamster, had defeated the Bionic Booger Boy, and through the wonders of science, Melvin Sneedly had been brought back to normal (well, almost normal). It looked like their last adventure was actually going to have a happy ending… except for one thing (well, three things) – the Ridiculous Robo-Boogers. Now George, Harold, and their buddies are on the run – with the Robo-Boogers in hot, gooey pursuit! Will the boys get away from these gross globs, or will Sulu have to save the day again?

Add to list
The Cobalt Prince
Written by Alexis Siegel and Mark Siegel & illustrated by Boya Sun, Xanthe Bouma, and Matt Rockefeller
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

R. J. Palacio, #1 New York Times bestselling author of WONDER, hails this adventure series as Mind-blowingly beautiful. . . . A must-read.

Think Star Wars meets Avatar: The Last Airbender

5 Worlds. 3 Unlikely Heroes. 1 Epic Battle for the Galaxy!

Oona Lee surprised everyone–including herself–when she lit the first beacon to save the Five Worlds from extinction. Can she light the other four beacons in time? Next stop, Toki! On the blue planet, Oona must face the sister who left her, and bring to light the Cobalt Prince’s dark secrets. Meanwhile, An Tzu is fading away as his mysterious illness gets worse. Will it stop him from joining the fight? Or will his unique magic be just what the team needs? And Jax Amboy is a hero on the starball field, but in a moment of real danger, will he risk everything to save his friends?

Oona must rely on some surprising new allies in order to stop a terrible plot from unfolding and continue her quest across the 5 WORLDS!

Add to list
The Minish Cap
Written by Akira Himekawa
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

The manga adapation of the legendary video game series, now available in English for the first time! Become part of the Legend - The Legend of Zelda! In the mystical land of Hyrule, three spiritual stones hold the key to the Triforce, and whoever holds them will control the world. A boy named Link sets out on a quest to deliver the Emerald, the spiritual stone of the forest, to Zelda, Princess of the land of Hyrule. The journey will be long and perilous, and Link will need all his skill and courage to defeat evil. The battle for Hyrule and the Sacred Realm has begun! On the day of the Picori Festival, Link and Princess Zelda go to watch the sword-fighting tournament. The winner is a strange man named Vaati, who has come to claim the Light Force which is sealed within the Bound Chest. When the Light Force turns up missing, Vaati turns Princess Zelda to stone! To save his friend, Link needs the power of the Picori Blade, but only a certain master swordsmith can reforge it. Can Link find the pieces of the broken sword before Vaati does?

    Did you enjoy our children's book recommendations? Did you know you can help us improve this list? Check out our Community Handbook and learn how to add tags to books.