This has to be the most definitive guide of children's books for parents. And one supported by the reputable The New York Times, and authored by its very own.
The New York Times Books Review's children's book editor for more than fifteen years, Eden Ross Lipson lends her expertise to this very comprehensive book of more than 1700 titles.
That's right! Your eyes are not fooling you. It's a whopping 1700 recommended book titles for children of all ages, including some of the best-loved classics, such as The Runaway Bunny, Curious George, or The Rainbow Fish.
So, with 1700 titles, how does one know where to start? This Guide is systematically categorized into six sections according to reading level and age: Wordless books, Picture books, Story books, Early reading books, Middle reading books and Young Adult books. Each entry does not just include the title and summary of the book, but also includes important bibliographic information about author and/or illustrator, the publisher, publication year, awards and related titles, if any. It even tells you whether the book is a hardcover or paperback.
What I really like about this book is the series of special indexes that come at the back. Instead of just an alphabetical index to all the tiles, this Guide also has an index of authors and illustrators, so if you have one name in mind, you can easily do a search to find the relevant books. Want a title that is suitable for your toddler and another for your lower primary kid? The Guide's age-appropriate index caters to that. There is even a read aloud index, recommending books that are best for reading aloud to your children.
This Guide's massive title list is also nicely categorized into various interests under its special subject indexes. From cats and dinosaurs to growing up and manners, to even history, music, science and sports, there are at least 50 indexes to cater to many hobbies and interests that a kid may have.
The inclusion of these indexes demonstrates the thoughtfulness of the folks at The New York Times, and the understanding that parents do not just need a list, they need a list that's practical and informative, a quick guide to meet their needs.
Indeed, I think that this Parents' Guide is a saviour to any parent, I must say, who can sometimes be lost as to which books to expose their children to and when. This Parents' Guide has put the power of searching for suitable books for their children in their hands.
Disclaimer: My Imagination Kingdom sponsored a copy of The New York Times Parents' Guide To The Best Books for Children for the purpose of this review. No monetary compensation was received. All opinions and images are my own.