Moses loves reading, which makes me incredibly happy, of course. One of his favorite things to request is “Cozy Mosey,” which is when we wrap him up in a fuzzy blanket on the sofa and read as many books to him as we can stomach without feeling crazy. He would sit there all day, taking the books in and going hard on his thumb, asking for us to read the book “again! again!” as soon as we finish.
Following is a list of his most-loved, most-requested books from his year as a one-year-old, categorized by broad theme. Some you’ll recognize, and some, I hope, may be new to you.
We ascribe to the Montessori philosophy that argues that it’s important for babies to read as many books about the real world as possible (and to keep them from fantasy for as long as you can). I’m always excited to find books, especially illustrated ones (in addition to the photography books mentioned below), that achieve this. These are some of Moses’s favorites in this category.
- The Midnight Farm, Reeve Lindbergh
- All the World, Liz Garton Scanlon
- Everywhere Babies, Susan Meyers
- Ten Fingers and Ten Little Toes, Mem Fox
- My Heart Fills With Happiness, Monique Gray Smith
- Peekaboo Morning, Rachel Isadora
- A Perfect Day, Carin Berger
The Natural World
Related to our preference for books that depict realistic life, I like to find books for Moses that show animals behaving in natural ways (e.g., not speaking, not drawn fantastically, etc.).
- Some Bugs, Angela DiTerlizzi
- One Gorilla, Anthony Browne
- The Home Builders, Varsha Bajaj
Similarly, I’m always excited to find a high-quality book featuring photographs rather than illustration. These were some of his most-requested books with photos throughout the year.
- Let’s Find Momo!, Andrew Knapp
- Global Babies, Global Fund for Children
- Global Baby Boys, Global Fund for Children
- Baby Play, Skye Silver
- Look and Learn: Birds, National Geographic for Kids
- Curious Critters of Virginia, David FitzSimmons
- Creature: Baby Animals, Andrew Zuckerman
- First 100 Words, Roger Priddy
Animals are usually the center of kids’ stories, for whatever reason, and Moses adored these in particular.
- Good Morning, Farm Friends, Annie Bach
- Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?, Bill Martin, Jr.
- Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear?, Bill Martin, Jr.
- Little Owl Lost, Chris Haughton
- Bear Snores On, Karma Wilson
- Giraffes Can’t Dance, Giles Andreae
- Rosie’s Walk, Pat Hutchins
- Ooko, Esme Shapiro
- A Good Day, Kevin Henkes
- Little White Bunny, Kevin Henkes
- Owl Babies, Martin Waddell
- Harry the Dirty Dog, Gene Zion
- Time for a Hug, Phillis Gershator
Art and Culture
It was kind of the cutest thing ever to hear baby Moses saying “Matisse! Matisse!” at bedtime, requesting his favorite painter, set to rhyme.
- In the Garden with Van Gogh, Julie Merberg
- A Magical Day with Matisse, Julie Merberg
- Home, Carson Ellis
- What a Wonderful World, Bob Thiele
If the book has flaps or some kind of game, Moses is IN.
- Peter Rabbit’s Touch and Feel Book, Beatrix Potter
- Lois Looks for Bob at the Beach, Nosy Crow
- Peek-a-Who?, Nina Laden
- Press Here, Hervé Tullet
Books for Baby Christians
I find so many books about Christianity for babies to be absolutely insipid and unbearable (do not even get me started on the outrageous narcissism of On the Night You Were Born), but these three did not bother me, and Moses really liked them as well. (Sally Lloyd-Jones is hard to beat in this category!)
- Found: Psalm 23, Sally Lloyd-Jones
- Loved: The Lord’s Prayer, Sally Lloyd-Jones
- Who Sang the First Song?, Ellie Holcomb
Classics, Old and New
I mean, they’re classics for a reason!
- Goodnight Moon, Margaret Wise Brown
- The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Eric Carle
- The Wonderful Things You Will Be, Emily Winfield Martin
One-year-olds have a sense of humor! Moses loves to laugh at these books in particular.
- The Pout-Pout Fish, Deborah Diesen
- Mustache Baby, Bridget Heos
- I’ll Love You Till the Cows Come Home, Kathryn Cristaldi
- King Baby, Kate Beaton
- Hug Machine, Scott Campbell
Things That Go
Boys are apparently born with a gene that makes them love vehicles.
- Alphabet Trucks, Samantha R. Vamos
- Little Blue Truck, Alice Schertle
- Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site, Shelly Duskey Rinker
What else should Moses have read this year?