Reading aloud from novels is one of my favorite things to do. I enjoy reading picture books, as well, but there is nothing like a good children’s novel, shared out loud.

I tend to think it pays off to be careful about what those very first novels are, though.

A cumbersome, boring, or otherwise unpleasant first experience with longer narrative can really take the wind out of your sails, and who needs that?

If you’re just getting started reading aloud from novel-length books with your kids, you’ll enjoy it more if you ease in with book that have short chapters, fantastic characters, and easy-to-follow plot lines.

Here are some of my very favorites:

(All links are Amazon affiliate links.)

Best First Chapter Books
The Prairie Thief
A Bear Called Paddington
Charlotte’s Web
The Mouse and the Motorcycle
My Father’s Dragon
The Bears on Hemlock Mountain
The Cricket in Times Square (Chester Cricket and His Friends)
The Milly-Molly-Mandy Storybook
Pippi Longstocking
Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle
Favorite Thornton Burgess Animal Stories Boxed Set (Sets)
Poppy
McBroom’s Wonderful One-Acre Farm: Three Tall Tales
Homer Price
The Trumpet of the Swan
The Growly Books: Begin (Volume 1)

You can pretty much close your eyes and pick any single one of those books and you’ll be in good shape.

If your child is at all hesitant about listening to a story without any pictures, give one of these a go and see what he says after.

That’s just one booklist of the many we have over in our FREE Read-Aloud Revival booklist. Get access to it now by popping your email in below:

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These are my best tips and tricks for making the transition from picture books to chapter books and novels as smooth as possible, and I share which author I think is the #1 best to start with. :)