By Danielle Steinberg
For as long as I can remember, reading has been an activity that my dad and I have always been able to enjoy together. When I was a baby, he read me stories before bed. As a child, we’d wake up early Saturday mornings and read the comics together. In high school, he’d sit with me and read while I worked on my homework. Now, reading together is something we make time for whenever we see each other. This Father’s Day, set aside some time to read books about dad with your child. Here are 15 of our favorites:
1. A Perfect Father’s Day
By Eve Bunting
Step inside the mind of a spunky four-year-old who adores her father in this affectionate family portrait. Susie has the perfect day planned in honor of Father’s Day, and luckily for her, she has the perfect father to celebrate with.
2. Because Your Daddy Loves You
By Andrew Clements
Clements paints a beautiful picture of a father-daughter relationship, emphasizing this dad’s patience, unconditional love and, of course, sense of humor. See how one father turns potential disasters into loving moments during a day with his daughter on the beach.
3. Daddy Kisses
By Anne Gutman
A book that almost requires cuddling and kisses, “Daddy Kisses” shares intimate moments between loving fathers and their children in the animal kingdom.
4. Father’s Day
By Anne Rockwell
We agree with Mrs. Madoff’s class: the perfect gift for Father’s Day is a book for dad! Every child cherishes different things about their father, which they share in this cute tribute dads everywhere. Maybe your little one can make a book too!
5. I Love My Daddy
By Sebastien Braun
A daddy may be big, a daddy may be small, a daddy may be loud, quiet, hairy or bald: but daddies are always loving. Soft illustrations match equally gentle text in this cute story.
6. If I Were Your Father
By Margaret Park Bridges
What if kids could be the parents, just for a day? In this lighthearted story, kids get the chance to switch places with their parents and share their wildest wishes and dreams telling what they’d do if they were in charge.
7. In Daddy’s Arms I Am Tall: African Americans Celebrating Fathers
By Javaka Steptoe
Honor Father’s Day with wonderful words by African-American writers and poets. With beautiful artwork to accompany strong and meaningful messages, families can see fathers as the heroes they truly are.
8. The Day I Swapped My Dad for Two Goldfish
By Neil Gaiman
With a perfect balance of comedy and storytelling, Gaiman tells a tale of a boy who traded his father in return for goldfish. Follow the wacky path of the boy’s tumultuous trades as his sister merely utters, “oh-oh.”
9. The Very Best Daddy of All
By Marion Dane Bauer
This beautifully illustrated companion to “My Mother Is Mine” lets kids see all of the wonderful things that dads do for them. Although the examples use animals in the wild, a father’s love is universally felt.
10. What Dads Can’t Do
By Douglas Wood
“What Dads Can’t Do” is an adorable narrative of a boy who finds solace in the things his dad “can’t do.” For instance, dad’s can’t cross the street without holding hands and theyreally need to be kissed goodnight. Perhaps the volume of this father’s love is what is left unsaid as he allows his son to feel comforted by his own thoughts.
11. Celebrating Father’s Day: Father’s Day is for Special People
By Donna Marriott
Father’s Day is about celebrating the men in our lives. This inclusive book does just that: encourages children without fathers to celebrate their grandfathers, uncles, step-fathers or other men who’ve made an impact in their lives. This book is a great way to celebrate loving, caring men who make a difference in a young person’s life.
12. What Daddies Do Best
By Laura Numeroff
Daddies do lots of things well: they play in the park well, they can bake cakes for birthdays well, they even trick-or-treat well. But what do daddies do best? Read to find out!
13. Animal Dads
By Sneed B. Collard III
From penguins to apes, this book gives a peek into the animal kingdom as it explores different roles of fatherhood for various animals. The pictures are intriguing and irresistible, making this book an instant favorite.
14. Just Us Two: Poems/Animal Dads
By Joyce Sidman
Children can explore more than poetry, more than animals, and more than dads in this playful and sensory collection by Joyce Sidman. Kids get a memorable experience while reading this book full of creative paper collages and whimsical phrases. For example, the poem “If I Were an Egg” is printed in the shape of a large egg!
15. My Daddy and Me
By Jerry Spinelli
In an enchanting collaboration between Newbery Medalist Jerry Spinelli and New Yorker artist Seymour Chwast, children and families are encouraged to celebrate the best time of day: when daddies get home from work!