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Mothers and More: Books About Families

Mothers, and the families they nurture, fill this fun and touching selection of recommended books for kids ages 0-9. From the classic Are You My Mother? to the fascinating How My Parents Learned to Eat, here are stories about the adventures and routines of very special families.

Quotable Quotes: The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you'll go. -- Dr. Seuss

A Chair for My Mother

By: Vera Williams
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

After a fire destroys their home and possessions, Rosa, her mother, and her grandmother save their money to buy a big comfortable chair. Suffused with warmth and tenderness, A Chair for My Mother celebrates family love and determination. A Caldecott Honor book. Spanish version also available.

A Mother for Choco

By: Keiko Kaszo
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Choco is a little yellow bird who lives all alone. When Choco decides that he wants a mother, he has trouble finding one who looks just like him. Finally, just as he has given up hope, he meets Mrs. Bear. Not only does Mrs. Bear hug him and kiss him, she takes him home to her family. A delightful story about finding family in wonderful (and unexpected) places. Also available in Spanish.

Are You My Mother?

By: P.D. Eastman
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

When separated from his mother, a baby bird asks every animal and each thing he comes across, “Are you my mother?” until the joyful reunion. Colorful, cartoon-like illustrations depict the baby bird’s search in this modern classic.

How My Parents Learned to Eat

By: Ina Friedman
Illustrated by: Allen Say
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

When an American sailor meets a Japanese woman, they both try in secret to learn the other's way of eating. Their courtship and growing love culminates in marriage. This realistic family story explores cultural similarities and differences and is told with humor and honesty by the couple's daughter.

Hush! A Thai Lullaby

By: Minfong Ho
Illustrated by: Holly Meade
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

A loving mother asks animals from a water buffalo to a lizard to "hush" so her baby can sleep. Once the noises stop, the mother herself sleeps — and the baby is now awake! Textured illustrations evoke the Thai setting and convey the understated humor of this unique bedtime book.

Let's Get a Pup! Said Kate

By: Bob Graham
Illustrated by: Bob Graham
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Her parents are receptive to Kate’s suggestion, "Let’s get a pup!" and head to the shelter. They bring home a puppy, but ultimately return to add Rosey, an older dog, to their family. Line and wash illustrations depict a very contemporary and loving family with wit and compassion.

Mama and Me

By: Arthur Dorros
Illustrated by: Rudy Gutiérrez
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

For a bilingual girl and her mamá , a loving bond is about being together…and independent. Arthur Dorros's skillful and subtle blend of English and Spanish narrative, illustrated with bold, striking paintings by award-winning artist Rudy Gutierrez, offers readers a poignant reminder that every day with Mamá is sweet.

Mama, Do You Love Me?

By: Barbara M. Joosse, Barbara Lavallee
Illustrated by: Barbara Lavallee
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Mama, Do You Love Me? tells the story of a young Inuit girl trying to find out how much her mother loves her. Beautiful illustrations of Alaska and the characters convey the cultural richness of this timeless story.

Mice and Beans

By: Pam Muñoz Ryan, Joe Cepeda
Illustrated by: Joe Cepeda
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

As Rosa Maria prepares for the family celebration of her granddaughter’s birthday, she gets unexpected help from the mice who live in the house. Spanish words are integrated into the joyful text and reflected in the energetic, vibrant illustrations.

My Daddy and I

By: Eloise Greenfield, Jan Spivey Gilchrest
Illustrated by: Jan Spivey Gilchrest, Eloise Greenfield
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

A boy and his father, shown as African Americans in warmly hued illustrations, enjoy doing everyday activities together, from laundry to sharing a book and more. The simple pleasures of family life are conveyed affectionately through easy but flowing language and realistic paintings in a sturdy format.

My Mom

By: Anthony Browne
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

"She's nice, my mom." Through a child's words, we meet a mom who can sing like an angel and roar like a lion while taking care of her family in so many different ways. She is indeed a Supermom! Young readers will recognize some of their favorite things about their mothers in the imaginative illustrations of this simple, loving tribute.

On Mother's Lap

By: Ann Herbert Scott
Illustrated by: Glo Coalson
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Sitting on his mother's lap, a young Inuit boy cheerfully gathers his belongings until he, some toys, his puppy, and a blanket are all crowded together in the rocking chair. When his baby sister cries, the boy claims there is no room for her, but Mother proves him wrong, and the threesome settle comfortably in the chair. Soft illustrations depict a cozy scene and a loving family. — The Horn Book

Owl Babies

By: Martin Waddell, Patrick Benson
Illustrated by: Patrick Benson
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

When they find their mother gone from the nest, three owlets worry that their mother won't return, but of course she does. Stunning illustrations combine with repeating text for a reassuring story.

Tell Me a Story, Mama

By: Angela Johnson, David Soman
Illustrated by: David Soman
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

As a child gets ready for bed, she implores, "Tell me a story, Mama," then proceeds to tell it herself. Mama adds only to punctuate the girl’s story with maternal wisdom. This warm story, told in two voices, reflects how children make family stories their own.

Tell Me Again About the Night I Was Born

By: Jamie Lee Curtis, Laura Cornell
Illustrated by: Laura Cornell
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Recommended by Latrice – I love this book because it beautifully tells the story of adoption in a way that tells adopted children that: you were chosen and special; you were a part of this family from the beginning; and your birth parents are wonderful people who loved you enough to allow you to become a part of our family. Spanish version also available.

The Runaway Bunny

By: Margaret Wise Brown
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

The Runaway Bunny begins with a young bunny who decides to run away. "'If you run away,' said his mother, 'I will run after you. For you are my little bunny.'" And so begins a delightful, imaginary game of chase.

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