1990 – 1999
This annotated list of classics and favorites was compiled by Sally Epp, children’s librarian at the Belle Isle Library (part of the Metropolitan Library System).
Every book listed is still in print and available for check out through Interlibrary Loan.
When available and in public domain, book titles are linked to free electronic text.
Please choose books for your children thoughtfully, as books for a wide range of ages, interests, and developmental levels have been included.
by Ehlert, Lois
Since he has a bell on his collar, the cat only catches feathers for lunch, but he certainly does try to catch the twelve common birds highlighted in this book for young children.
by Seuss, Dr.
Dr. Seuss’ inspirational ode to potential success makes a great gift for anyone who starts a new stage of life, whether it’s the first day of Kindergarten or the first day of retirement.
by Spinelli, Jerry
In this modern tall tale, the legendary Jeffrey “Maniac” Magee awes and surprises the people of Two Mills with his impressive physical feats and impossible accomplishments.
by Howe, James
Pinky is a boy named for his favorite color, pink, and Rex is a girl named for her favorite creatures, dinosaurs, and together they amuse and delight readers of this popular series.
by Wiesner, David
Surreal and luminous illustrations reveal levitating frogs swooping through the night sky in a journey beginning on “Tuesday evening, at around eight.”
by Naylor, Phyllis Reynolds
Marty knows that the young beagle he found belongs to the violent and drunken Judd, but he doesn’t know the right thing to do — return it to its rightful owner or save it from abuse.
by Pfister, Marcus
Rainbow Fish is so proud of his glittering scales that he refuses to play with plainer fish, but then learns that friendship is more important than beauty and shares his scales with others.
by Scieszca, Jon
Scieszca mocks the traditional fairy tale in this irreverent, sarcastic and hilarious collection of cracked fairy tales that entertain without a single moral, but with lots of wry humor.
by McCully, Emily Arnold
Bellini is a retired high-wire acrobat staying in a Paris boarding house who refuses to try his act again until young Mirette stubbornly begins to teach herself how to walk the tightrope.
by Rylant, Cynthia
When Summer’s adopted Aunt May dies, Summer and Uncle Ob set off across rural West Virginia on a search for some sign from their beloved May, whom they are missing terribly.
by Fleming, Denise
Fleming rhythmically describes the changing seasons in a small, small pond combining the animals and words that toddlers love into rhymes like “splitter, splatter minnows scatter.”
by Lowery, Lois
The society of the future seems to be a perfect utopia, but Jonas becomes alarmed by the dark secrets he discovers when the aging “Giver” trains him as the “Receiver of Memories”.
by Wright, Betty Ren
When Gwen is sent to live with the Mercy family she must gain her foster family’s help to solve the frightening, page-turning mystery of the shadowy ghosts who haunt their manor.
by Say, Allen
In this loving tribute to the inter-generation immigrant experience, Allen Say shows how he and his grandfather both felt torn between their two homes, the United States and Japan.
by McBratney, Sam
Little Nutbrown Hare and Big Nutbrown Hare gently compete to show how much they love each other until Little Nutbrown Hare falls asleep assured of his father’s love.
by Creech, Susan
As they travel from Ohio to Idaho to find Sal’s mother, Sal entertains her grandparents with a story that mirrors her own, in a moving and complex book about the difficult things in life.
by Cushman, Karen
A homeless, nameless girl in Medieval England pulls herself up out of the dung heap, gets a crotchety midwife to make her an apprentice and learns to accept herself, failures and all.
by Rathmann, Peggy
Officer Buckle’s safety lectures put kids to sleep until his dog Gloria starts providing comic relief in the background, and soon they discover you should “always stick with your buddy.”
by Henkes, Kevin
Lilly loves school and Mr. Slinger, her teacher, but when he has to punish her by taking away her new purple plastic purse she does something very mean and later regrets it.
by Konigsburg, E. L.
Mrs. Olinsky chooses four special students for the 6th grade Academic Bowl team, and they surprise everyone when they beat the 7th and 8th grade teams and win the state competition.
by Hesse, Karen
Billie Jo reveals her strength and determination as she relates, in free verse journal entries, all of her painful adolescent experiences in Oklahoma’s panhandle during the Dust Bowl.
by Zelinsky, Paul O.
Zelinsky presents a version of Rapunzel that is both faithful to the traditional Italian story and accompanied by gorgeous paintings in the Italian Renaissance style.
by Levine, Gail Carson
Poor Ella was gifted with obedience by her fairy godmother, but the problematic gift makes it impossible for her to say no to any order or request in this creative retelling of Cinderella.
by Pilkey, Dav
Two fourth-grade boys hypnotize their principal into believing he’s their comic book hero, Captain Underpants, who fights crime with Wedgie-Power in a red cape and jockey shorts.
by Rowling, J. K.
When Harry is invited to attend Hogwart’s School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he discovers that he is famous for surviving the evil wizard Voldemort’s attempt to kill him as an infant.
by Shannon, David
All David hears is “No, David!” as he runs wildly out of control across the pages of this book, but no matter how bad he is, he still gets a hug and an “I love you” from his mother.
by Sachar, Louis
Poisonous lizards, spiced peaches, Texas desert, mistaken identity, and, of course, Holes combine to make Stanley Yelnats’ story an original mix of folktale, mystery and survival.
by Peck, Richard
Joey and his sister spend the summers of 1929 to 1935 with their grandmother, a larger-than-life woman who exposes them to outrageously funny adventures in her small town.
by Lum, Kate
Patrick puts off bedtime by crying “but Granny!” each time he thinks of something he needs and Granny jumps into action with a rousing “What!” and makes each thing from scratch.
by Brown, Margaret Wise
Featuring vivacious illustrations by Chris Raschka, this companion to the 50-year-old classic, The Important Book, highlights some important things about ages one to six.