29 Books to Read This Valentine's Day

Guest Blogger  //  Feb 8, 2021

29 Books to Read This Valentine's Day

In our opinion, there's no better way to spend time with the ones you love than by sharing a book together. Here are 29 of our recommendations for all ages that are perfect for the Valentine's Day season!

Picture Books

Clifford Loves

Clifford the Big Red Dog loves playing outside. Clifford loves reading and swimming, too. But most importantly, Clifford loves spending time with his friends-especially Emily Elizabeth!Learn about all of the things Clifford the Big Red Dog loves in this adorable, heart-shaped board book. It's the perfect gift for kids who love Clifford year-round!

Love From Giraffes Can't Dance by Giles Andreae & Guy Parker-Rees

Celebrate love with Giraffes Can't Dance! Featuring modified art and text from the bestselling picture book, and a fresh trim size, Love from Giraffes Can't Dance is sure to delight readers of all ages. The perfect purchase for Valentine's Day, bedtime, and all throughout the year, this lyrical book reminds readers to celebrate love, music, and dance!

How Do Dinosaurs Say I Love You by Jane Yolen & Mark Teague

 

Parents and children can never have enough ways to say "I love you"--and now, America's favorite dinosaurs are giving families a funny book, perfect for bedtime, storytime, anytime. Even when little dinosaurs are naughty, it's important to remind them that no matter what they do, they are always loved. In this book, readers will laugh aloud as parents cope with the typical antics of childhood, but in the end, hugs and kisses show your little one how much you care.

I Love You to the Moon and Back by Sandra Magsamen

In the tradition of books like Guess How Much I Love You and On the Night You Were Born comes an expression of infinite love from "love guru" Sandra Magsamen. A perfect gift for new parents, baby birthdays, showers, graduations, holidays, and more, this sweet board book with rhyming text, pastel illustrations, and a built-in gift tag is the perfect way to remind little ones just how loved they are!

We Love You Mister Panda by Steve Antony

Mr. Panda is waiting with eager and open arms to give free hugs -- but nobody seems to want any of his cuddles. After his friends Skunk, Croc, Elephant, Mouse, Sloth, and Ostrich hug each other, Mr. Panda is left wanting some love. If only he knew what his friends have in store...

You Are My Sweetheart by Joyce Wan

A playful, love-filled board book story full of candy-sweet images and an endearing cuddly message from beloved creator Joyce Wan. At the end of the story you can't help but snuggle up with your own little sweetheart with "kisses and hugs" to remind them that you love them!

Grandma Loves You Because You're You by Liza Baker & David McPhail

This is the perfect read-aloud for grandmas whose special Valentines are their grandchildren! Fox is spending a day with Grandma. They're making delicious pancake breakfasts, flipping through old photo albums, singing that special song together and baking cookies Grandma-style! Every parent and grandparent will be proud to share the message of this touching story with their little one: Grandma's love for you is so special. I love everything that we do. I want you to always remember. Grandma loves you because you're you!

I Love You, Stinky Face by Lisa McCourt with illustrations by Cyd Moore

"But Mama, but Mama, what if I were a super smelly skunk, and I smelled so bad that my name was Stinky Face?"

Mothers love their children and this unconditional love is truly tested in I Love You, Stinky Face. Lisa McCourt and Cyd Moore beautifully weave a reassuring tale of the love and affection of a parent. The imaginative son turns himself into a meat-eating dinosaur, a swamp creature and much, much more before being satisfied with the fact that no matter how stinky he is or how slimy of a creature he could possibly be, he is loved and nothing will change that.

Arthur's Heart Mix-Up by Marc Brown

Everyone's favorite aardvark, Arthur, is back in this exciting reissue of a favorite friendship story. 

Arthur is carefully working on his science fair project -- a model of the human heart -- when an overexcited Pal runs through and ruins it! Will Arthur's friends be able to help -- and in time for the fair?

The Case for Loving by Selina Alko

This is the story of one brave family: Mildred Loving, Richard Perry Loving, and their three children. It is the story of how Mildred and Richard fell in love, and got married in Washington, D.C. But when they moved back to their hometown in Virginia, they were arrested (in dramatic fashion) for violating that state's laws against interracial marriage. The Lovings refused to allow their children to get the message that their parents' love was wrong and so they fought the unfair law, taking their case all the way to the Supreme Court - and won!

Chapter Books and Graphic Novels

Owl Diaries #5: Warm Hearts Day by Rebecca Elliott

It's almost Warm Hearts Day! Everyone is busy making gifts for their loved ones. Eva LOVES crafting, so she creates all sorts of fun gifts and treats for her friends. She is excited to give out her homemade gifts at the big party at the Old Oak Tree. But then Eva realizes she forgot to make gifts for her family! Will she be able to make the gifts in time?

Pikmi to Be Your Valentine

The Pikmi Pops LOVE love! Bibble the Lamb thinks her friends are WOOLLY wonderful and Fuwa the Fox wants everyone she loves to be together FUR-ever. Celebrate Valentine's Day with the Pikmi Pops in this early reader.

WeirDo by Anh Do

From bestselling author Anh Do comes the hilarious hit chapter book series, WeirDo. These illustrated books will keep readers laughing as Weir and his friends navigate the trials of elementary school.

Meet Weir Do.

No, that's not a typo, that's his name!

Weir Do's the new kid in school. With an unforgettable name, a crazy family, and some seriously weird habits, fitting in won't be easy . . . but it will be funny!

Middle Grade

I Only Have Pies for You by Suzanne Nelson

Dacey Culpepper Biel comes from a long line of pie bakers. Her family's shop, Pies N' Prattle, is legendary in her small Texas town. But Dacey didn't inherit a gift for baking. Her pies always end up as messy or burnt disasters. Even worse? Business has been slow lately, and Dacey wishes she could do something to help.

Then opportunity knocks: A popular TV show wants to feature the shop! But that means Dacey will have to spend time with Chayton Freedel, her arch-rival and the cute son of the show's host. And when clues arise about a long-hidden family recipe, life at the shop may never be the same.

With a sprinkling of luck and some Southern charm, will Dacey be able to find the recipe, work alongside Chayton . . . and save her family's legacy?

Meow or Never by Jazz Taylor

Lonely seventh grader Avery just moved, and hasn't really made friends, despite joining stage crew for theater. To her surprise, when she explores behind the stage, she finds a cat tucked away into a nook. Avery names her Phantom and tells her all her secrets. When she is singing to Phantom during lunch one day, one of the other girls, Nic, overhears her — and tells the drama teacher Avery has to be cast in the Valentine's Day play. Even though it's Avery's worst nightmare to be in front of a crowd, she decides to audition to impress Nic, who just so happens to be the prettiest girl Avery has ever seen. To her surprise, she is cast as the lead!

She and Nic, who plays her best friend, start to get closer, though Avery can't give up her secret about Phantom. The cat is the only one Avery feels comfortable practicing in front of. But then she finds evidence that someone else is taking care of Phantom too. What if Phantom gets taken away? Avery's secrets about Phantom, and about having feelings for Nic, start to catch up to her. What will happen if the truth comes out?

Some Bunny to Love by Michelle Schusterman

Laura Rodriguez’s pet bunny, Evie, is kind of a star: She’s the mascot of the Rodriguez family’s corner bodega in Harlem. Local residents stop by the small store every day just to see Evie. And even though people tend to make Evie nervous, Evie knows she’s safe as long as Laura is around.

But when Laura and her family go out of town for a few days, Evie suddenly finds herself in unfamiliar surroundings. Laura couldn’t have meant to leave Evie with the snooty Mrs. Vanderwaal, could she? Frightened, Evie makes a run for it, determined to find her way back to the bodega — even though she has no idea where she is. All she knows is that she’s in a vast green park in the center of New York City.

That’s when Evie meets the streetwise Bart, a stray Shiba Inu pup who is perfectly fine being on his own. He doesn’t need an owner, thank you very much. Together, this unlikely duo embarks on a journey to cross Central Park, encountering countless tourists, dastardly dog catchers, and other animals. It’s a long way, but if they can set aside their differences and work together, then maybe — just maybe— they can find their way home.

Keep It Together, Keiko Carter by Debbi Michiko Florence

Seventh grade is supposed to be a game changer. And Keiko thinks she's got it covered, especially with Audrey and Jenna by her side to shop for a new look, pick out a prime lunch spot, and even hit up that cute new bubble tea place after school. Her trio is ready to tackle life as they always have... together.

But when Audrey decides they need boyfriends before Fall Ball, it looks like things may be changing in all the wrong ways. Jenna is sick of caving in to Audrey's demands, and soon Keiko's besties are barely talking, leaving her caught in the middle. While she's been dreaming about triple-dates, first kisses, and a boy she really shouldn't have a crush on, the friendship she's always thought was rock-solid is beginning to crumble.

Playing Cupid by Jenny Meyerhoff

Clara knows she has a talent for pairing up couples. But what happens when someone sets their sights on the matchmaker?

Girls Just Wanna Have Pugs by J. J. Howard

The best part of Kat's day is getting to walk her neighbor's irresistible pug, Meatball. So when her parents insist she start an extracurricular this year, she makes her own, by turning her hobby into a business: a dog-walking business, that is.

She and her best friends, Taz and Lucy -- as well as the cute new boy, Declan -- try to get Four Paws Dog Walking into shape. But wrangling puppies and pleasing customers turns out to be harder than they thought! Can Kat keep taking care of the dogs she loves without hurting her friendships?

Graphic Novels

Logan Likes Mary Anne by Gale Galligan (based on the novel by Ann M. Martin)

It's the first day of a new school year, and while Mary Anne doesn't know what to expect from the eighth grade, she's looking forward to getting back into the swing of things. One thing she definitely doesn't expect is to meet Logan Bruno, who just moved to Stoneybrook!

Logan has a dreamy southern accent, he's awfully cute… and he might be interested in joining the BSC. But the baby-sitters aren't sure if Logan would make a good club member, so they send him on a job with Mary Anne as a test. Logan and Mary Anne hit it off, but Mary Anne isn't sure of where their friendship could go. Life in the Baby-sitters Club has never been this complicated — or this fun!

Forget Me Nat by Maria Scrivan

For the first time in her life, Natalie feels confident in her own skin. Her talents are being recognized, she has supportive friends, and she's spending a ton of time with her crush, Derek! But when Derek tells Natalie that he wants to be just friends, Natalie's self-confidence quickly changes to self-loathing. As she attempts to recover from her broken heart, Natalie casts aside her talents and even her friends. With no one to turn to, Natalie will have to pull herself out of this mess on her own.

Smile by Raina Telgemeier

Raina just wants to be a normal sixth grader. But one night after Girl Scouts she trips and falls, severely injuring her two front teeth, and what follows is a long and frustrating journey with on-again, off-again braces, surgery, embarrassing headgear, and even a retainer with fake teeth attached. And on top of all that, there's still more to deal with: a major earthquake, boy confusion, and friends who turn out to be not so friendly.This coming-of-age true story is sure to resonate with anyone who has ever been in middle school, and especially those who have ever had a bit of their own dental drama.

Young Adult

You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson

Liz Lighty has always believed she's too black, too poor, too awkward to shine in her small, rich, prom-obsessed midwestern town. But it's okay -- Liz has a plan that will get her out of Campbell, Indiana, forever: attend the uber-elite Pennington College, play in their world-famous orchestra, and become a doctor.

But when the financial aid she was counting on unexpectedly falls through, Liz's plans come crashing down . . . until she's reminded of her school's scholarship for prom king and queen. There's nothing Liz wants to do less than endure a gauntlet of social media trolls, catty competitors, and humiliating public events, but despite her devastating fear of the spotlight she's willing to do whatever it takes to get to Pennington.

The only thing that makes it halfway bearable is the new girl in school, Mack. She's smart, funny, and just as much of an outsider as Liz. But Mack is also in the running for queen. Will falling for the competition keep Liz from her dreams . . . or make them come true?

The Love & Lies of Rukhsana Ali by Sabina Khan

Seventeen-year-old Rukhsana Ali tries her hardest to live up to her conservative Muslim parents' expectations, but lately she's finding that impossible to do. She rolls her eyes when they blatantly favour her brother and saves her crop tops and makeup for parties her parents don't know about. If she can just hold out another few months, Rukhsana will be out of her familial home and away from her parents' ever-watchful eyes at Caltech, a place where she thinks she can finally be herself. But when she is caught kissing her girlfriend Ariana, her devastated parents take Rukhsana to Bangladesh, where everything she had been planning is out of reach. There, immersed in a world of tradition and arranged marriages, Rukhsana finds the perspective she's been looking for in her grandmother's old diary. The only question left for her to answer is: Can she fight for the life she wants without losing her family in the process?

One Way or Another by Kara McDowell

When Paige is presented with two last-minute options for Christmas vacation, she's paralyzed by indecision. Should she go with her best friend (and longtime crush) Fitz to his family's romantic mountain cabin? Or should she accompany her mom to New York, a city Paige has spent her whole life dreaming about?

Just when it seems like Paige will crack from the pressure of choosing, fate steps in -- in the form of a slippery grocery store floor -- and Paige's life splits into two very different parallel paths. One path leads to New York where Paige falls for the city . . . and the charms of her unexpected tour guide. The other leads to the mountains where Paige might finally get her chance with Fitz . . . until her anxiety threatens to ruin everything.

However, before Paige gets her happy ending in either destiny, she'll have to face the truth about her struggle with anxiety -- and learn that you don't have to be "perfect" to deserve true love.

Here the Whole Time by Vitor Martins

Felipe is fat. And he doesn't need anyone to remind him, which is, of course, what everyone does. That's why he's been waiting for summer: a break from school and the classmates who tease him incessantly. His plans include catching up on TV, finishing his TBR pile, and watching YouTube tutorials on skills he'll never actually put into practice.

But things get a little out of hand when Felipe's mom informs him that Caio, the neighbour kid from apartment 57, will be spending the next fifteen days with them while his parents are on vacation. Felipe is distraught because A) he's had a crush on Caio since, well, for ever, and B) Felipe has a list of body image insecurities and absolutely NO idea how he's going to entertain his neighbor for two full weeks.

Suddenly, the days ahead of him that once promised rest and relaxation (not to mention some epic Netflix bingeing) end up bringing a whirlwind of feelings, forcing Felipe to dive head-first into every unresolved issue he has had with himself - but maybe, just maybe, he'll manage to win over Caio, too.

Heartstopper by Alice Oseman

Shy and softhearted Charlie Spring sits next to rugby player Nick Nelson in class one morning. A warm and intimate friendship follows, and that soon develops into something more for Charlie, who doesn't think he has a chance.

But Nick is struggling with feelings of his own, and as the two grow closer and take on the ups and downs of high school, they come to understand the surprising and delightful ways in which love works.

I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver

When Ben de Backer comes out to their parents as nonbinary, they’ll move in with their estranged sister and find friendship, love, and happiness along the way. 

The Music of What Happens by Bill Konigsberg 

Max: Chill. Sports. Video games. Gay and not a big deal, not to him, not to his mom, not to his buddies. And a secret: An encounter with an older kid that makes it hard to breathe, one that he doesn't want to think about, ever.

Jordan: The opposite of chill. Poetry. His "wives" and the Chandler Mall. Never been kissed and searching for Mr. Right, who probably won't like him anyway. And a secret: A spiraling out of control mother, and the knowledge that he's the only one who can keep the family from falling apart.

Throw in a rickety, 1980s-era food truck called Coq Au Vinny. Add in prickly pears, cloud eggs, and a murky idea of what's considered locally sourced and organic. Place it all in Mesa, Arizona, in June, where the temp regularly hits 114. And top it off with a touch of undeniable chemistry between utter opposites.

Over the course of one summer, two boys will have to face their biggest fears and decide what they're willing to risk -- to get the thing they want the most.