14 Best, Engaging Books For 4-Year-Olds 2020, Accodring To Moms

14 Colorful, Captivating And Stimulating Books For Busy 4-Year-Olds

December 26, 2019 Updated February 27, 2020

Best Books 4 Year Old Toddlers

We get it: It’s still hard to believe that tiny bb you just brought home from the hospital basically yesterday is now a talkative, wisecracking, *strongly* opinionated 4-year-old. We’re betting their interests look a little bit different now, and that goes for everything from the food they want to eat to the books they want to read.

Four years is a transition period—your kiddo is through with board books but not quite old enough to sit through longer picture books or chapter books juuuust yet. Books for 4-year-old kids “should offer fun opportunities of engagement—both visually and rhythmically,” says author and illustrator Sujean Rim, who wrote the Birdie series. “Look for picture books with captivating images for a child to point to, ask about, or giggle at, or find a story with a rhythmic cadence,” she notes. The most important thing? Books for this age group should be super fun to read aloud to make storytime enjoyable for kiddos—and for parents. (Though if someone makes me read Fox In Socks for the millionth time I might lose it!)

Below are 14 of our favorite books for the 4-year-old in your life: From beautifully illustrated picture books that offer a glimpse to how kids live around the world, to a magical knight’s tale about accepting who you are, to a mystery complete with a map and clues for sleuthing—we’ve found your (and your 4-year-old’s) new fave read.

Birdie’s Big-Girl Shoes by Sujean Rim

Birdie, a budding fashionista, loves her stylish mom’s fancy shoes. But when she tries on all the pumps and peep-toes, Birdie soon realizes that these “big-girl shoes” are not all that practical for turning cartwheels or dancing, and that her “beautiful barefoot shoes” are still the best choice of all.

Rim, a fashion illustrator and shoe designer, fills the book with gorgeous imagery.

$28 AT AMAZON



Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry

Written by former NFL player Matthew A. Cherry, Hair Love charmingly chronicles a sweet relationship between a father and daughter. When Zuri’s mom is away, it’s up to Dad to style Zuri’s gorgeous natural curls. The two figure out a new super special hair style together—your kiddo will chuckle at all the tangly attempts along the way.

$11 AT AMAZON

Prince and Knight by Daniel Haack

This modern fairy tale puts forth the simple truth that not every prince wants to marry a princess. Cheer on the prince as he finds his match and lives happily ever after. Teaching kids early on that true love comes in many forms.

$11 AT AMAZON

Lucy and Company by Marianne Dubuc

An easy intro to chapter books, Lucy and Company features three sweet, humorous, cozy stories about a little girl named Lucy and her animal friends. Each chapter centers around their daily adventures: a birthday party, a picnic gone awry, and finding a new home for a few new baby chicks. If you and your LO loved Winnie the Pooh, you’ll swoon over these, too.

$17 AT AMAZON



Who Left the Light On? By Richard Marnier

This cleverly crafted tale is all about forging your own path in the name of creativity and self-expression. In a town where every house is exactly the same, one neighbor boldly leaves his light on…and the tiny changes start taking shape from there. You and your kiddo will adore seeing just how zany and diverse the houses start to become!

$16 AT AMAZON

This Is How We Do It by Matt Lamothe

If you and your child have ever been curious about what it’s like to go to school in Japan, or Uganda or Iran, This Is How We Do It is a lovely introduction to a day in the life of seven real kids just like your LO. Learn about what their families eat for breakfast in Peru, see how they play in India, and check out the chores they handle in Italy. In a word, this book is fascinating.

$11 AT AMAZON

Spend It! By Cinders McLeod

Sonny the bunny struggles with how to spend his allowance of three carrots a week. Does he have enough carrots to buy a bouncy house? Follow along as Sonny’s mom helps him make the smart choice about spending on things that are really worth his carrots.

$13 AT AMAZON



Help Find Frank by Anne Bollman

Your sweet little sleuth will love following along on this mystery adventure. Frank the Frenchie is lost but has left clues all over town. Track him on the map to bring Frank home—just watch out for his cloud of smelly toots! Be prepared for giggles.

$13 AT AMAZON

The Sea Book by Charlotte Milner

Do you have a tiny Jacques Cousteau living under your roof? If so, they’ll adore The Sea Book, an informative read about life under the sea complete with beautiful illustrations and a message about the problem with plastic—helpful for future recyclers to hear!

$10 AT AMAZON

Tacos!: An Interactive Recipe Book (Cook In A Book) by Lotta Nieminen

Pick up this starter-cookbook for your mini master chef, and get ready to learn all about how to make a taco feast. From sorting out your supplies to selecting ingredients to stirring, chopping and plating, your LO will be fully engaged in this hands-on recipe book.

$13 AT AMAZON



The Not So Quiet Library by Zachariah O’Hora

Oskar, Teddy and their dad spend most Saturdays at their local library with books (and donuts), but this Saturday, something *strange* happens. Laugh along with the five-headed monster’s hangry antics and watch as Oskar and Teddy realize they both hold the secret to taming the unruly (and rude!) beast. Your kid will love this cute and quirky read.

$14 AT AMAZON

Pink Is For Boys by Robb Pearlman

This empowering picture book relays the message that pink is for everybody— and so is baseball, playing dress-up, racing cars, and liking unicorns. Reframe gender stereotypes for your kiddos with this simple and refreshing story, complete with gorgeous watercolor illustrations.

$11 AT AMAZON

Red: A Crayon’s Story by Michael Hall

This colorful tale follows a blue crayon mistakenly labeled as Red, who suffers an ensuing identity crisis. No matter how hard he tries, Red is *still* blue. A friend helps Red find a fresh perspective—and Red starts to realize how he can show the world his true colors.

$12 AT AMAZON



The Ultimate Book of Cities

We love a pop-up book that can engage kids for seemingly hours on end (OK, maybe 15 minutes but that’s something!), and any budding architect is sure to be transfixed by The Ultimate Book of Cities with its multitude of flaps, sliding actions and top-notch pop-up structures. Learn all about the planning and parts of the city and the people who live and work there.

$22 AT AMAZON

Getting your little reader ready for kindergarten (it’s coming!)? Stock your shelf with these picks.

 

Although we only recommend picks we really love, we may earn a commission on purchases made through links from our site.
SHOP THE STORY
stroke red
Birdie’s Big-Girl Shoes by Sujean Rim
$28
Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry
$11
Prince and Knight by Daniel Haack
$11
Lucy and Company by Marianne Dubuc
$17
Who Left the Light On? By Richard Marnie...
$16
This Is How We Do It by Matt Lamothe
$11
Spend It! By Cinders McLeod
$13
Help Find Frank by Anne Bollman
$13
The Sea Book by Charlotte Milner
$10
Tacos!: An Interactive Recipe Book (Cook...
$13
The Not So Quiet Library by Zachariah O...
$14
Pink Is For Boys by Robb Pearlman
$11
Red: A Crayon’s Story by Michael Hall
$12
The Ultimate Book of Cities
$22