Best Books for 4-Year-Old

Four years is transition age for a kid when he/she comes across a phase to preschool life and meets new kids with different interests. So, it’s essential to get them interested in books to make them aware of human beings’ diversity. Books are the best thing to make it happen pleasantly.

But those books should be fun, small, entertaining, and meaningful to keep them engaged. Picture books are the best way to achieve that goal. We have selected the best books for four-year-olds to make it easy for you.

Here is the list of top 20 books for four-year-olds.

1: The Wonky Donkey

The Wonky Donkey

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  • Book name: The Wonky Donkey
  • Author: Craig Smith
  • Illustrator: Katz Cowley
  • Paperback: 24 pages
  • Reading level: 3-5 years
  • Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks
  • Language: English

Storyline: The story is about a three-legged wonky donkey, how he walks around and makes funny noises while wandering around. This book will get your kids to fits of laughter while read out loud to them.

About the Author: Craig Smith is a writer, musician, entertainer, and recipient of the 2008 APRA children’s song of the year for The Wonky Donkey.

About the Illustrator: Katz Cowley is an Illustrator and teacher who leads workshops in drawing, creative Journaling, and self-expression.

2: If Animals Kissed Good Night

If Animals Kissed Good Night

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  • Book: If Animals Kissed Good Night
  • Author: Ann Whitford Paul
  • Illustrator: David Walker
  • Board Book: 34 pages
  • Reading level: 2-6 years
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux
  • Language: English

Story: The book tells about how each animal would express love and kiss good night to their loved ones. A giraffe would stretch their neck high, and the wolf would kiss his pup and howl, and how every animal will share love in its unique way.

About the Author: Ann Whitford Paul has published 20 award-winning picture books, poetry, early books, and books for adults. She started writing picture books after years of bedtime storytelling to her four kids.

Fun learning: Apart from a good bedtime story, this book gives a visual picture of animal body parts, their babies, and how they will kiss their babies, suitable for learning.

3: The Very Hungary Caterpillar

The Very Hungry Caterpillar book

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  • Book name: The Very Hungary Caterpillar
  • Author: Eric Carle
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: World Of Eric Carle
  • Reading level: 2-5 years
  • Language: English

Story: This is a classic story about a caterpillar who eats all week and then goes through a beautiful change of becoming a beautiful butterfly.

About The Author: Eric Carle is the creator of many beautiful books for young children; The Very Hungary Caterpillar is his best known and well-appreciated work.

About The Book: Apart from the entertaining story, this book gives your kid a chance to understand nature’s different miracles and how a butterfly comes to life.

4: Giraffes Can’t Dance

Giraffes Can't Dance book

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  • Book: Giraffes Can’t Dance
  • Author: Giles Andreae
  • Illustrator: Guy Parker-Rees
  • Reading level: 4-9 years
  • Publisher: Cartwheel Books
  • Language: English

Story: This tale is about Gerald, the giraffe who wants to dance, but he can’t because of his long thin legs and crooked knees. When appreciated by an unlikely friend, he finally becomes able to dance to his tune.

About the author: Giles Andreae is a well-appreciated award-winning author of many children’s books, including K is For Kissing A Cool Kangaroo and The Chimpanzee Of Happytown.

About the Illustrator: Guy Parker-Rees is the Illustrator of many best-selling children’s books like K Is For Kissing A Cool Kangaroo, The Chimpanzee Of Happytown, Down By The Cool Of The Pool, and many more.

5: Room On The Broom

Room on the Broom book

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  • Book: Room On The Broom
  • Author: Julia Donaldson
  • Illustrator: Axel Scheffler
  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Reading level: 3-7 years
  • Publisher: Puffin Books
  • Language: English

Story: The witch and her Cat fly through the sky when they get caught up in the wind, and the witch loses her hat, bow, and wand. Luckily those things lay in the hands of helpful animals, and they are willing to return those things to her but only on one condition if she gives them to ride on her broom. But the question is there room on the broom for so many friends?

About the author: Julia Donaldson is an internationally best-selling author of many outstanding children’s books. Her bestselling books include The Gruffalo, Room On The Broom, and many more.

6: I Am Confident, Brave & Beautiful

I Am Confident, Brave book

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  • Book: I Am Confident, Brave & Beautiful
  • Author: Hopscotch Girls
  • Paperback: 24 pages
  • Reading level: 3 and up
  • Publisher: Hopscotch Girls
  • Language: English

About the book: This colouring book allows a girl to think beyond the lines and grow her thoughts stronger, creative, and inspired. This book is all about building a girl’s confidence and imagination.

About the Author: Hopscotch girl is a progressive media company working for girls empowerment and reinforcing positive body image, inspiring confidence, and encouraging them in scientific fields.

Perfect Gift: This book is the perfect birthday or gift for any occasion for your lovely kid or loved ones.

7: How To Catch A Mermaid

How to Catch a Mermaid book

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  • Book: How To Catch A Mermaid
  • Author: Adam Wallace
  • Illustrator: Andy Elkerton
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Wonderland
  • Reading level: 4-10 years
  • Language: English

Story: This beautiful tale tells about all the tricks to catch a mermaid. You must be intelligent and have some pearls, mirrors, crowns, and jewels to attract the mermaid.

About the author: Adam Wallace is the writer of the New York Times best-selling How to Catch series and The Holiday Heroes Save Christmas.

About the Illustrator: Andy Elkerton is a well-known children’s book illustrator.

8: The Day Crayons Quit

The Day the Crayons Quit book

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  • Book:  The Day Crayons Quit
  • Author: Drew Daywalt
  • Illustrator: Oliver Jeffers
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Reading level: 3-7 pages
  • Publisher: Philomel Books
  • Language: English

Story: Poor Duncan wants to colour, but when he opens his box of crayons, he finds nothing but a letter saying his Crayons had enough, and they quit. Blue crayon is tired of just being used for water bodies, black just for outlines. Let’s see what Duncan will do to please them get them back to do work.

About the author: Drew Daywalt is a well-known author of Children’s books; his blockbuster books are The Day The Crayons Quit, The Day The Crayon Come Home, and The Crayons’ Christmas.

About the Illustrator: Oliver Jeffers is the best art maker and storyteller. He is an Illustrator of the award-winning and best-selling picture book How To Catch a Star and New York Times bestseller Here we Are.

9: There’s No Place Like Space

There's No Place Like Space book

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  • Book: There’s No Place Like Space
  • Author: Tish Rabe
  • Illustrator: Aristides Ruiz
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Reading level: 4-8 years
  • Publisher: Random House Books For Young Readers
  • Language: English

Story: The Cat in the hat takes you on to trip through outer space and teaches you all about the planet in the most fun and entertaining manner.

About the Author: Tish Rabe is the well known and best-selling author of over 170 books for children, including 19 books in the Cat in the hat’s series.

About the book: This book is the perfect gift for birthdays or any other occasion for kids as it provides a moat fun way to learn and get knowledge.

10: When God Made You

When God Made You book

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  • Book: When God Made You
  • Author: Matthew Paul Turner
  • Illustrator: David Catrow
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Reading level: 3-7 years
  • Publisher: Convergent Books
  • Language: English

Story: This is the most beautiful and affirming book for children, which tells them about their value in this world and how in every step of their God is continuously looking at them and helping them through everything they experience in daily life.

About the author: Matthew Paul Turner is a writer of bestselling books like When God Made You and When I Pray For You.

About the Illustrator: David Catrow is editorial Cartoonist and Illustrator of over 70 children’s books, including several New York Times bestselling books like I Ain’t Gonna Paint No More, And I Like Myself.

11: Llama Llama Loves Camping

Llama Llama Loves Camping book

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  • Book: Llama Llama Loves Camping
  • Author: Anna Dewdney
  • Paperback: 24 pages
  • Reading level: 4-6 years
  • Publisher: Penguin Young Readers
  • Language: English

Story: Llama goes on camping for the first time and ends up having fun, contrary to his initial thoughts. He overcomes all challenging situations wonderfully and learns an essential lesson from them.

About the author: Anna Dewdney is a well-known and enthusiastic proponent of reading aloud to children. She is the creator of the acclaimed book Llama Llama Books.

Best Book: The story teaches a fantastic lesson about how a person grows stronger after facing the fears and challenges of life.

12: Good Night, Little Blue Truck

Good Night, Little Blue Truck book

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  • Book: Good Night, Little Blue Truck
  • Author: Alice Schertle
  • Illustrator: Jill McElmurry
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books For Young Readers
  • Reading level: 4-7 years
  • Language: English

Story: The little blue truck and his good friends are stuck in a storm and rush home to go to bed, but who can sleep in this situation. Meanwhile, all the other friends show up seeking shelter from the storm and face the scary storm together, and this bond makes it easier and less frightening.

About the Author: Alice Schertle is the author of New York Times best-selling books like Little Blue Truck series, Very Hairy Bear, Button Up!, and All You Need For a Snowman.

About the Illustrator: Jill McElmurry was an Illustrator of the best-selling Little Truck Series and many fantastic picture books like Mad About Plaid When Otis Courted Mama.

13: Oh, Say Can You Say Di-no-saur?

Oh Say Can You Say Di-no-saur book

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  • Book: Oh Say Can You Say Di-no-saur?
  • Author: Bonnie Worth
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Books For Young Readers
  • Reading level: 4-8 years
  • Language: English

Story: The book is fun when reading aloud and full of information and knowledge for kids and makes them more interested in science. These books tell about how fossils are made and introduction about dinosaurs from the flying Archaeoptyerx to the spiky Ankylosaurus.

About The Author: Bonnie Worth is the writer of many children’s books, including 18 of the Cat in The hat’s learning library books, Oh Say Can You Say Di-No-Saur, If I Ran The Rain Forest, Oh Say Can You Say Seed, and many more.

Fun and educational: This book is a fun way to keep your kid interest in books and get educated while reading and having fun.

14: The Pigeon Has to Go To School 

The Pigeon HAS to Go to School book

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  • Book: The Pigeon Has to Go To School
  • Author: Mo Willems
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion Books For Children
  • Reading level: 3-5 years
  • Language: English

Story: The book is about the journey of negotiating a pigeon, why he has to go to school when he knows everything necessary to know, and his fears what if his teacher doesn’t like him and what if he learns too much at school.

About the Author: Mo Willems is a New York Times bestselling author and Illustrator. He is the recipient of Three Caldecott Honor, two Theodor Seuss Geisel Medals, and five Geisel Honors for his Elephant and Piggie series.

15: Just Go To Bed

Just Go to Bed book

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  • Book: Mercer Mayer
  • Paperback: 24 pages
  • Reading level: 3-7 years
  • Publisher: Random House Books For Young Readers
  • Language: English

Story: Little Critter does not want to go to bed, but it’s time for him to stop playing, take a bath, or make a fuss about getting into his Jammies. It tells about the constant bedtime struggle between kids and parents.

About the author: Mercer Mayer is a Writer and Illustrator of many award-winning books like cuddly monsters, beautiful creatures, and endearing critters. She wrote over 300 books for children.

16: Sneezy The Snowman

Sneezy the Snowman book

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  • Book: Sneezy The Snowman
  • Author: Maureen Wright
  • Illustrator: Stephen Gilpin
  • Paperback: 34 pages
  • Reading level: 3-7 years
  • Publisher: Two Lions
  • Language: English

Story: Sneezy snowman catches a cold, and to warm up, he drinks cocoa, sits in the hot tub, stands near the fire, and melts! But children know what to do to make him feel right. Hilarity chills the air while the sneezy snowman attempts to warm himself.

About the author: Maureen Wright is a well-known writer of children’s books, and her marvellous work includes Sneezy The Snowman, Sleep Big Bear Sleep, Earth Day Birthday, and many more.

About the Illustrator: Stephen Gilpin is a renowned illustrator of children’s books, including Sneezy The Snowman, The Three Cabritos, Pirate Mom, Fart Squad, and many more.

17: Walter The Farting Dog

Walter the Farting Dog book

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  • Book: Walter The Farting Dog
  • Author: William Kotzwinkle, Glenn Murray
  • Illustrator: Audrey Colman
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Frog Children’s Books
  • Reading level: 4-9 years
  • Language: English

Story: Walter is a friendly dog except for one problem: he has gas, which leads to farts, and he can’t help it. Both kids Billy and Betty love him, but their father is not happy with the dog and decides to send him to the dog pound tomorrow. Then in the night, the burglar strikes, now Walter has a chance to become a hero.

About the author: William Kotzwinkle has written many children’s books, including Trouble in Buckland, The Book of the Green Planet. He also wrote adult books, including The bear went over the Mountain, The Exile, Fata Morgana, and The Fan Man.

  • Glenn Murray has written radio dramas for CBC and articles on Canadian history.

About the Illustrator: Audrey Colman is a designer and featured artist of the magazine, posters, and other print work. This is her first children’s book.

18: The Good Egg

The Good Egg book

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  • Book: The Good Egg
  • Author: Jory John
  • Illustrator: Pete Oswald
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Reading level: 4-8 years
  • Publisher: Harper Collins
  • Language: English

Story: Meet the excellent egg who’s very good as compared to others. But being right is very hard while others don’t care. All that pressure of maintaining credibility is too much, and the good egg starts to Crack. So, the egg decides to make a change.

About the author: Jory John is New York Times best-selling author and two times E. B. White Read-Aloud recipient. His award-winning and best-selling work include the Good Night Already series, Terrible Two series, The bad seed, and many more.

About the Illustrator: Pete Oswald is an Illustrator, character designer, concept artist, and production designer. His work includes The Bad seed, Mingo The Flamingo, and many more.

19: Fancy Nancy and the Quest for the Unicorn

Fancy Nancy book

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  • Book: Fancy Nancy and the Quest for the Unicorn
  • Author: Jane O’Connor
  • Illustrator: Robin Preiss Glasser
  • Paperback: 24 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Festival
  • Reading level: 4-8 years
  • Language: English

Story: Nancy and Bree are unicorn experts. They decide to go on a quest to find a unicorn when Freddy Freddy and JoJo want to go. They follow the trails of glitter and wander around, but Freddy and JoJo are losing hope. But the two big sisters and hopeful and guess what they find…….

About the author: John O’Connor has written more than 70 children’s books, including the New York Times best-selling Fancy Nancy series.

About the Illustrator: Robin Preiss Glasser has illustrated many acclaimed children’s books, including the bestselling Fancy Nancy series. She won the children’s children’s choice award for Fancy Nancy and the Mermaid Ballet.

20: If I Built a Car

If I Built a Car book

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  • Book:  If I Built a Car
  • Author/Illustrator: Chris Van Dusen
  • Paperback: 40 pages
  • Reading level: 3-5 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin Books
  • Language: English

Story: Jack has designed his dream car inspired by Zeppelins and trains, Cadillacs, and old planes, with bright shiny colours, containing a fireplace, a pool, and a snack bar. After a tour of the interior Rebort, the robot starts the engine, and Jack, with his father, set off to a crazy test drive.

About the author: Chris Van Dusen is a Writer and Illustrator of many acclaimed children’s books and winner of the E. B. White Read-Aloud Award for If I Built A Car.

FAQs :

What types of books should I keep available for kids? 

You should keep a wide variety of books, including picture books. But make sure to include books that interest your kids most.

How long should I read to or read with my four years old? 

It depends on your and your kid’s interest. But start with 30 minutes and increase your time gradually depending on your kid’s interest.

How do I keep my kid engaged while I read? 

Ask questions about the book from time to time, ask them to take a guess what would happen next, and make the book enjoyable to them while reading.

How can busy parents read to their kids? 

Parents can read anytime to their kids during breakfast while waiting for the school bus or while cooking. But parents should read to their kids.

My daughter wants to read the same book over and over again; what should I do? 

A favourite book can be a source of comfort and security for kids. Find out what attracts her the most about that book and include books of similar context while reading to her.

Conclusion:

Books are an excellent companion for your kids as they tend to make them focused and learn about the world in a fun, entertaining way. It helps to grow their brains more efficiently and learn reading early. So, it’s safe to say nothing can be better for your four-year-old kid than a good book.

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