15 Fun Books for Boys and Girls to Read

Open up their imaginations, and let them dive into a world of make-believe, heroes, survival and pure fun, by making sure you have your bookshelves filled with the best books for boys and girls. Reading is a chance to broaden the horizons, as well as boost their literacy, from the earliest age. Whether you’re reading to the beloved child in your life, or letting them start their own adventure into reading, we’ve narrowed down the best fun books for children that you should be aware of.


For the Wriggliest and Littlest Bookworms – Books for Boys and Girls Aged 2-5

Whether the little one in your life is a whirling dervish of rambunctiousness, or a quieter, gentler soul, these preschool-age books for boys will captivate and enchant. Start the reading bug young, and make them anticipate story time, and it will become the best time for quietening those wriggles.

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen

1 Bear Hunt

Little people love repetition and a good dollop of onomatopoeia, and We’re Going on a Bear Hunt has both in spades. This will soon become a well-loved favourite as you follow the adventuring family through the swishy swashy grass and the swirling whirling snowstorm, as well as squelching through the mud.

Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy by Lynley Dodd

2 Hairy Maclary

Another preschool book that will have your young ones falling in love with the sounds and rhymes of the English language, is the exuberant tale of Hairy Maclary. This lovable, yet troublesome, pup really is a child’s best friend, and his antics will charm and delight. Whet their appetite with this first in the series.

Captain Flinn and the Pirate Dinosaurs by Giles Andreae

3 Captain Flinn

Combine those staples of young childhood – dinosaurs and pirates – and you have the daring adventures of Captain Flinn and his pals. An excellent first storybook hero, bursting with life and enthusiasm, the illustrations will keep your young one spellbound, as you discover a book that begins to stretch their sit-still-ability.

The Snail and the Whale by Julia Donaldson

4 The Snail And The Whale

Any preschool bookshelf wouldn’t be complete without a smattering of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, and we particularly love the gentle rhyme of The Snail and the Whale. A tale of adventure which shows even the smallest of beings can be a hero: it has an important message, whilst opening the world of wonders to the smallest of people.

I Will Not Ever Never Eat a Tomato by Lauren Child

5 I Will Not Ever Never Eat A Tomato

Charlie, of Charlie and Lola fame, really is a long-suffering brother. This particular tale of his endeavours - to get younger sister Lola to try some different foods - takes them both on an imaginary journey which will be sure to tempt the taste buds of even the fussiest eater.

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For the Early Readers Taking Their First Solo Steps – Books for Boys and Girls Aged 5-8

With school reading books often dulling even the most exciting storylines, it’s important to fuel a love of reading with stories that draw children in, and get them wanting to turn the page. At this age it’s all about the love of the story, and playing with words, whilst having a hefty dose of fun along the way.

The Cat in the Hat by Dr Seuss

6 Cat In The Hat

Probably the best first reader for the mountain of fun and chaos with the simplest of decodable words, The Cat in the Hat is a speedy rhyme that will shock and awe even the naughtiest little ones. It’s fantastic for building confidence in the world of reading.

Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown

7 Flat Stanley

If you have a lovable rogue, who is constantly finding new ways to get in to mischief, then Flat Stanley will let them get lost in a page-turner of trouble, rather than the real thing. An excellent first chapter book, just make sure you don’t find your child one day attempting to flatten themself with a notice board!

The Brilliant World of Tom Gates by Liz Pichon

8 The Brilliant World Of Tom Gates

If you’re having a few struggles getting your child to engage in a book which is more than pictures, then the Tom Gates' books are for you. With crazy quirky fonts and enticing doodles, combined with the antics and woes of the young Tom, your son or daughter will soon be begging you to spend their pocket money on books.

The Boy Who Biked the World by Alastair Humphreys

9 The Boy Who Biked The World

For your young adventurer who dreams of tales of daring and challenge, this book is a must. Opening up the world of geography, people, places, and culture, there’s also the understanding that you can do anything, even when the naysayers say you can’t.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney

10 Diary Of A Wimpy Kid

Playing with fun fonts, and short choppy writing styles, interspersed with fun illustrations, Diary of a Wimpy Kid is renowned for hooking even the most reluctant of readers in. A series that looks at life through the eyes of a growing-up boy, and all the challenges of fitting in, having fun, and getting things ‘right’.

For the Boyish Bookworm Ready for His Own Adventures – Books for Girls and Boys Aged 9-12

Keeping the love for reading burning requires a careful selection of age appropriate books that allow older primary boys to delve into stories of adventure, success, and independence. Children of this age need the imaginary worlds of fairy tales wrapped up in a contemporary and cool cloak of disguise.

How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell

11 How To Train Your Dragon

Hiccup is the most unlikely of champions, yet from humble endeavours he changes the course of his own village. With humour, wit, and a range of different escapades, this book will keep their pages turning well after lights out if you’re not careful.

Demon Dentist by David Walliams

12 The Demon Dentist

If you want a book that recognises the particular type of humour enjoyed by older boys and girls, and plays to it, as it boosts a love of reading, then any David Walliams book will do the trick. Demon Dentist will excite, scare, and leave your children grabbing their sides from too much laughter.


Boy by Roald Dahl

13 Boy

An insight in to boyhood from another era, Roald Dahl’s account of his own childhood will impress and amaze the modern day child. However, throughout the recount is a common theme of growing up, being young, and the roller-coaster of life appearing at one moment magical, and at the next bewildering.

Percy Jackson and the Lightening Thief by Rick Riordan

14 Percy Jackson

Find a series which captivates your young reader, and you’ll want to find more. That’s possible with the impressive Percy Jackson series. The first, Percy Jackson and the Lightening Thief, is a saga of gods, demigods, and mythical creatures. Set against the backdrop of Ancient Greek Myths, Percy Jackson is a boy who struggles and triumphs on his own adventure.

Alex Rider Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz

15 Alex Rider Stormbreaker

A spy story with a 14 year old boy as the hero, this is probably every young boy’s secret dream. With fun gadgets galore, and a spirit of daring, the Alex Rider books will become well-loved novels on the shelves of older children.


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