It’s not easy for us “ordinary folk” to come up with a list of the best books children and teens ever written. So it should come as no surprise that this task was entrusted to a group of leaders in the book-publishing industry industry – world-reknown editors, writers, and literary critics. Some of the books were unanimously voted among the top 10, while others differed from one person to another. It turns out that some of the more famous books finished at the bottom of the list.
In any case, here is the list of what have been judged the ten best English books for children.
1. Charlotte’s Web, by EB White, 1952
This sweet, tender tale is suitable not just for children but for readers of all ages. Excellent writing in English – simple but not so simple that you’ll get bored. This is a great book for kids to read along with their parents, so they can better understand the English language. Purchase Charlotte’s Web and enter into this little girl’s wonderful world.
2. The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, by C.S. Lewis, 1950
A book from the “Chronicles of Narnia” series, famous even here in Italy, this is a great read if you love traveling through time and space, and exploring other dimensions. This style of fantasy is timeless and millions of readers have fallen in love with it worldwide. Buy The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe to improve your child’s English.
3. Where the Wild Things Are, by Maurice Sendak, 1963
This story for children is both written and illustrated by the same author, with impressive drawings that are definitely intended for a “miniature-sized” audience. Its excellent writing is easy to understand and also very beautifully worded – perfect if you’re looking for a way to study English. With a fascinating plot, this story is wonderful to read together. Buy Where the Wild Things Are and start reading it to your little one.
4. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carrol, 1865
We all know the classic story of Alice in Wonderland, with the Queen of Hearts, the Mad Hatter, and all the other unique, bizarre characters she meets in the strange world through the looking glass. This timeless tale, perfect for all ages, is really entertaining, with a quirky narrator who tells the coming of age story of this little girl whose head is always in the clouds. Wouldn’t you like to read Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland with your family to improve your English together?
5. Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott, 1868
I can say with confidence that Little Women has remained in the heart of any little girl who has read this wonderful book, replete with the struggles of one family, which are strikingly realistic. This story is no fantasy, telling of a mother raising four teenage daughters, whose father is a soldier who’s been sent to war, and whom everyone hopes will come home safe and sound. Sweet, sometimes bitter and even addictive, you can read this timeless book in one sitting. Purchase Little Women for a really interesting read.
6. The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, 1943
The Little Prince is one of the most-translated classic novels in the history of literature. In fact, almost everyone knows this story of a prince who meets a bunch of strange characters in each of the worlds he discovers, day after day. This book is about the meaning of friendship and loyalty, fitting into the fantasy genre with a hint of romance. Get The Little Prince, perfectly suited to help you and your child improve your English.
7. Winnie the Pooh, by A.A. Milne, 1926
This is the story of the cute little bear who’s always stealing jars of honey, along with his friends, Christopher Robin (the author’s son), Eeyore, Piglet, Tigger, and other loveable characters who roam about the hundred-acre forest looking for new adventures. Even today kids are still crazy about Winnie, and what better way to introduce them to reading English than by getting the book Winnie-the-Pooh to read together?
8. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, by Roald Dahl, 1964
Who wouldn’t want to take a tour through the inside of a chocolate factory? It’s the dream of every young child. . .and so what if the owner is a bit of a odd character, who wants to put his visitors through a series of different tests? Charming, light, but also very well-written, this book can help get any child into reading, since it’s full of twists, turns, and outrageous situations. Get dipped in chocolate and buy Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!
9. A Wizard of Earthsea, by Ursula K Le Guin, 1968
This book tells the story of a boy who discovers he has incredible powers and can defeat evil attacks. A one-of-a-kind fantasy novel, since it doesn’t have elves, fairies, or demons – just magicians and sorcerors, living alongside farmers and merchants. The only evil in this book is human evil – not evil brought on by some kind of imaginary creature. The story is very unique and creative. Buy A Wizard of Earthsea for an exciting read in English.
10. A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle, 1962
A science fiction fantasy novel which will certainly win over the heart of any child who reads it; it narrates the adventures of a family of two scientists and their children living in the remotest of galaxies. They have one girl who is struggles to fit in with her peers, and her “genius” little brother, as well as two twin brothers who are very athletic and into sport. Virtually any child can identify with one of these main characters. To improve your English, purchase A Wrinkle In Time, to read with the whole family.