Books by Theme

Brothers and Sisters

Whether it's a bratty little brother or a bossy older sister, sometimes siblings make you want to scream! Other times they'll turn around and do something so nice it takes your breath away. This list of recommended books for kids ages 0-9 is dedicated to siblings, both older and younger, who are such an important part of many a family's life.

7 x 9 = Trouble!

7 x 9 = Trouble!

By: Claudia Mills
Illustrated by: G. Brian Karas
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Wilson, a third grader, struggles with multiplication. He wishes he were as smart as the other kids in his class, or even his little brother, Kipper, who is a kindergarten math wiz. Wilson perseveres, however, and not only passes his times table test but gains a pet!

Annie and Simon: The Sneeze & Other Stories

Annie and Simon: The Sneeze and Other Stories

By: Catharine O'Neill
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Annie, a preschooler, and her caring older brother Simon share everyday activities in four adventures in each of the brief chapters. Together Simon and Annie explore nature, Annie nurses Simon's sneeze, learn a bit about cats and dogs, and solve the mystery of the missing chestnuts. Line drawings depict the warm sibling relationship.

Annie Rose Is My Little Sister

Annie Rose Is My Little Sister

By: Shirley Hughes
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Alfie, a preschooler, understands his baby sister, Annie Rose. Like most siblings, Annie Rose is both a delight and a trial. In this book, realistic illustrations depict real children in sometimes untidy but always recognizable settings.

Attaboy, Sam!

Attaboy, Sam!

By: Lois Lowry
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Sam uses a great deal of initiative to make just the right birthday present for his mother. But when he combines all of her favorite smells to make the perfect perfume, disastrous (and odiferous) results permeate this worthy sequel to All About Sam.

Black Is Brown Is Tan

Black Is Brown Is Tan

By: Arnold Adoff
Illustrated by: Emily Arnold McCully
Genre: Fiction, Poetry
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Rhythmic language and luminous paintings show the joy of this warm and loving family as they rejoice in their differences.

Daisy and the Egg

Daisy and the Egg

By: Jane Simmons
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Daisy, a winsome young duck, never looses faith that her new sibling will emerge from the egg, despite her mother’s warning that some eggs just don’t hatch. Daisy’s perseverance pays off when her new brother Pip finally pokes his way out of the shell. Cozy illustrations capture Daisy’s child-like confidence in an appealing story of determination and loyalty.

Emma's Yucky Brother

Emma's Yucky Brother

By: Jean Little, Jennifer Plecas
Illustrated by: Jennifer Plecas
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Emma is thrilled that her family is adopting a 4-year old boy. She soon learns, though, that being an older sister isn’t what she thought it would be at all. Gradually, Emma and Max start to feel like siblings as each child begins to adapt to their family's new configuration. Expressive, simply drawn illustrations extend the smooth text.

Ghosts

Ghosts

By: Raina Telgemeier
Genre: Fiction, Fantasy
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Catrina and her family are moving to the coast of Northern California because her little sister, Maya, is sick. Cat isn’t happy about leaving her friends for Bahía de la Luna, but Maya has cystic fibrosis and will benefit from the cool, salty air that blows in from the sea. As the girls explore their new home, a neighbor lets them in on a secret: There are ghosts in Bahía de la Luna. Maya is determined to meet one, but Cat wants nothing to do with them. As the time of year when ghosts reunite with their loved ones approaches, Cat must figure out how to put aside her fears for her sister’s sake – and her own.

Jamaica Tag-Along

Jamaica Tag-Along

By: Juanita Havill
Illustrated by: Anne Sibley O'Brien
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

When Ossie, Jamaica’s older brother, goes out to play, Jamaica follows. Ossie tells Jamaica that she’s a tag-along. But Jamaica soon meets another friend and together they turn the tables on her brother. Realistic watercolors convey the children’s emotions.

Judy Moody and Stink: The Big Bad Blackout

Judy Moody and Stink: The Big Bad Blackout

By: Megan McDonald
Illustrated by: Peter Reynolds
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Grandma Lou joins Judy, Stink and their parents to ride out a hurricane. When the power is off, does a pretzel-eating ghost join the family? Characteristic good humor, recognizable situations and likeable characters are hallmarks of this series.

Julius, Baby of the World

Julius, Baby of the World

By: Kevin Henkes
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Lilly is sick and tired of hearing about the wonders of Julius, her new baby brother. Because she wants him to go back to where he came from, Lilly spends a lot of time in the "uncooperative chair." But when a cousin criticizes Julius, Lilly learns just how protective a big sister can feel. Deceptively simple line and wash illustrations show the intense emotions of Lilly and her mouse family.

Ling and Ting Share a Birthday

Ling and Ting Share a Birthday

By: Grace Lin
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Ling and Ting, (first introduced in Ling and Ting, Not Exactly the Same), share many things including their birthday. After all, they're twins! Their special day — from gifts to wishes — is celebrated in six short chapters in which they help each other in many ways.

Little Bro, Big Sis

Little Bro, Big Sis

By: Rocio Bonilla
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

When the younger brother describes his sister, she’s pictured as a rhinoceros, a boring, bossy bully. Flip the book over, and it’s the sister who sees her brother as a noisy, annoying monkey. They come together to realize that maybe two kids in “the family isn’t so bad.” But then with a “Waaaa," a third sibling arrives! This humorous look at sibling dynamics is sure to resonate.

Max's First Word

Max's First Word

By: Rosemary Wells
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

No matter how hard Ruby tries to get her baby brother to say the names of the objects around him, Max will only say “Bang!” One day, however, Ruby gets a big surprise from Max’s first real word. Understated humor and bright, bold illustrations appeal to children and their adults.

My Brother Charlie

My Brother Charlie

By: Holly Robinson Peete, Ryan Elizabeth Peete
Illustrated by: Shane Evans
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Twins Callie and Charlie have a lot in common, but they are also very different: Charlie has autism. Callie narrates the story, describing what autism is and exploring the issues that come along with it. The theme is of love, patience, and acceptance. Endnotes give a few basic facts for children unfamiliar with autism. The authors, a mother-daughter team, based this story on personal experience. The bright, mixed-media illustrations depict the family's warmth and concern.

One Crazy Summer

One Crazy Summer

By: Rita Williams-Garcia
Genre: Historical Fiction, Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Eleven year old Delphine and her younger sisters, Vonetta and Fern, leave their native Brooklyn to visit their long-estranged mother in California. Cecile not warm towards her daughters, seemingly concentrating only on her poetry. Delphine narrates the first of three books which is set in Oakland, 1968. While on their own, the girls learn about the Black Panthers, how political movements impact individuals, and even how to reconnect with Cecile.

One-Third Nerd

One-Third Nerd

By: Gennifer Choldenko
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Fifth-grader, Liam, is the oldest of the three with two younger sisters. Confident Dakota is a third grader just waiting until she can cure cancer; friendly second grader, Izzy, is a hugger and notices things that other kids miss. Their parents are divorced and money is tight. Can the kids figure out what is causing their beloved dog to urinate on the apartment’s carpet – before the landlord evicts them? Difficult themes are handled with a light touch by the author of Newbery-honor winning, Al Capone Does My Shirts.

Twins

Twins

By: Varian Johnson
Illustrated by: Shannon Wright
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Though identical twins, Francine and Maureen Carter couldn’t be more different. And their close relationship is changing drastically as they start 6th grade. Siblings will see themselves in this realistic, engaging, and colorfully illustrated graphic novel as the twins compete for student council president.

Zack in the Middle

Zack in the Middle

By: Dia Michels, Fred Bell
Illustrated by: Fred Bell
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Being stuck in between a busy older sister and a cute baby sister makes Zack feel out of place. Then he discovers being in the middle isn’t so bad after all. Lighthearted illustrations extend the recognizable situations described in the breezy text.

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