11 Best Books For 1-Year-Olds In 2024, Recommended By Teachers And Parents

To develop the language and observation skills of 1-year olds, experts recommend parents spend more time reading with their little ones. The best books for 1-year-olds have classic stories and colorful illustrations that can help develop little ones’ vocabulary, rational expression, language, and literacy skills. It has a lasting effect as it forms the foundation for their learning pursuits.

Elisabeth Daly, a state-certified high school English teacher and book blogger, says, “Children of all ages love books! These stories can help little ones connect words to pictures and help develop their early language and vocabulary skills.”

Check out the list of the best-selling and parent-recommended books for one-year-olds below.

In This Article

11 Best Books For 1-Year-Olds In 2024

1. Best With Bright Illustrations: Deborah Diesen The Pout-Pout Fish


The Pout-Pout Fish is a fun story of a fish and its journey through depression and happiness. This book also explores the different facets of sadness and happiness. The sweet story revolves around a sad fish and other sea creatures who ask the fish to be happy or smile a little. This New York Times best-selling storytime book for one-year-olds and above comes with understandable and colorful illustrations by Dan Hanna.

protip_icon Quick tip
Keep changing your voice’s pitch, tone, and accent when reading a book to grab your child’s attention and bring the book to life (1).

2. Best For Bedtime: Margaret Wise Brown Goodnight Moon


Goodnight Moon is the iconic bedtime story that takes your baby to dreamland. This best-selling book has colorful illustrations by Clement Hurd. The classic story revolves around a rabbit and his green room. This calm and soft rhythm is appealing as the rabbit bids goodnight to everyone and every object present in the room. It can quickly become the little one’s favorite book as it is relatable to their daily life. You may know more about this classic book in this video.

3. Best Interactive: Eric Hill Where’s Spot?


Where’s Spot is an interactive, fun story about a cute little puppy and a dog who searches for Spot. This time-tested lift-the-flap book for one-year-olds to three-year-olds has engaging illustrations and well-placed sentences that encourage the little one to search Spot along with the cute puppy. This interactive story also teaches your little one different animals and objects commonly seen in a room. Check out this video where the author reads the story aloud.

protip_icon Did you know?
Reading to your baby aids their social and emotional development by encouraging them to point, touch, and answer simple questions.

4. Best For Developing Imagination: Rod Campbell Dear Zoo A Lift-the-Flap Book


Dear Zoo is an interactive book with eye-catchy illustrations. This animal-themed book for one-year-olds and over introduces different zoo animals to your little one. It also defines each unique attribute of the animal. The sweet storybook creates curiosity and adds imagination to your little one’s thinking.

Item Weight: 6.4 ounces
Our Tester's Experience

"I love how this book turns storytime into an interactive experience, fostering a love for reading early on. The book has interactive flaps and engaging illustrations that little ones enjoy. I love to read this book to my grandchildren."

5. Best With Lovely Artwork: Hannah Hall God Bless You and Good Night

Hannah Hall God Bless You and Good Night Image: Hannahchall

God Bless You and Good Night is another bedtime storybook that takes you through ten different animals’ bedtime routines. It covers all the routine things animal families do, such as bathing, getting on jammies, and hitting a snack before bedtime. This imaginative story makes your little one follow their bedtime routine. This fun book for one-year-olds to three-year-olds comes with a precious and understandable piece of artwork.

Item Weight: 15.5 ounces
Our Tester's Experience

"This charming book has become my child's favorite bedtime companion. Its adorable illustrations and heartwarming message of love are wholesome and nurturing. However, the touch-and-feel version could be improved. Overall, it makes a great baby shower or birthday gift."

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The 5,019 reviews on Amazon indicate that this product has a loyal following.

6. Best For Sensory Stimulation: ToBe ReadyFor Life Fabric Book

Soft fabric book that is interactive and encourages language and sensory skills. The adorable book is made of soft polyester material that includes a mirror and a handle to attach the stroller. The fabric book has bright, attractive images. Every page of this sensory book for babies has an exciting feature and is durable, non-toxic, and machine-washable.

Item Weight: 6.4 ounces | Product Dimensions: 2.7 x 7.8 x 7.8 inches
Our Tester's Experience

"Got this interactive and colorful book for my sister, and she loved it. It is well-made and easy to wash, which is a great advantage!"

protip_icon Do remember
Look for a soft and non-toxic book for babies between four to six months old, as they tend to mouth, bite, and throw the books (2).

7. Best For Hand-Eye Coordination: Melissa and Doug Whose Feet?

Whose Feet? by the trusted brand Melissa & Doug is a soft activity book that encourages your little one to glance at a book creatively and interactively. This crocodile-inspired busy book for one-year-olds comes with a cute story, dangly feet, and colorful pictures. This machine-washable book introduces different animals and teaches your little one hand-eye coordination.

Item Weight: 4.8 ounces | Product Dimensions: 1.75 x 7 x 10 inches
Our Tester's Experience

"This book feels soft, has vibrant colors, and comes in a convenient vinyl case. My kids enjoy the interactive experience of the dangling feet with accompanying sounds. While it disrupts the reading flow, the kids find it delightful. Highly recommended!"

8. Best For Language Development: Ditty Bird Children’s Songs Book

If you are looking for rhyme and rhythm books for your one-year-old, this Children’s songs book is an excellent sound book that delivers different rhymes and illustrative artwork. The adorable book has push buttons that support language learning. Your little one can now hear different rhymes on each page. This expert-approved sound book for one-year-olds to three-year-olds enhances fine motor skills and language abilities and provides an opportunity for parents to bond with their children.

9. Best For Introducing Animals: Little Hippo Touch and Feel Wild Animals


Touch and feel books could be a great addition to teach your baby. This book teaches your infant about how it feels when you touch that specific animal. It also teaches the unique characteristics of the animal. It includes animal images with a unique area to sense them and indulge in an imaginative world. This book is a perfect choice for exploring wild animals and their facts.

Item Weight: 10.4 ounces
My Personal Experience

"I got this as a gift for a child who loves animals, and she enjoyed the interactive pictures and the texture on each page. I found the patches that mimic animal skin interesting, teaching children about different animal features. It's also pretty durable and well-constructed."

10. Best For Introducing The Alphabet: Maria Harding Animal ABC


Encourage early learning with the Animal ABC book, which is well-crafted with attractive, engaging illustrations to grab your child’s attention. It helps to teach alphabets and different animals with simple texts. Additionally, this book encourages vocabulary building, visual memory, observation, and literacy skills. Each page is made of thick paper, making it the perfect book for tiny hands.

Item Weight: 10.6 ounces
Our Tester's Experience

"I love how it features a modern and colorful interpretation of an ABC book, filled with adorable animals. It's a hit with my son, and it keeps him engrossed. While the uneven binding makes it sit odd, there have been no issues with turning the pages. A great learning tool for toddlers!"

11. Best With Easily Recognizable Images: Wonder House My First Library

My first library is a set of ten board books that introduce your infant to alphabets, numbers, shapes, colors, animals, birds, vehicles, vegetables, and fruits. Each book features attractive and easily recognizable images. The simple books are designed to fit easily in tiny hands with thick paper and are one of the best first words books for one-year-old and two-year-old toddlers. These ABC and 123 books for one-year-olds are ideal for gifting.

Item Weight: 1.81 pounds
Our Tester's Experience

"I found this set cute, good-quality, and compact. I like the realistic pictures - very Montessori-friendly. The durability is yet to be tested, but they're wonderful for now."

*The prices provided in this article are based on the latest available information. However, they may vary due to changes in pricing by the seller and/or promotional offers.

How To Choose The Right Book For One-Year-Olds?

Here are some factors you should consider when buying books for 1-year-old babies.

  1. Size: Choose a book that is lightweight and fits easily in tiny hands. Also, ensure that the paper size of the book is thick with rounded edges, providing convenience to turn the pages over easily.
  2. Appealing images: Bright colors and attractive images often look appealing to the eyes. Big images are convenient to remember and easier to recognize. Pick a book that has clear illustrations and makes their eyes feel calm.
  3. Appealing text: Small font sizes are difficult to read. Any book with a larger font size is convenient to read. Select a book with a simple story and easy-to-read text or lines with common words that help your infant remember them and try to use them. Moreover, rhymes and rhythmic words are easier for infants to use.
  4. Appealing sounds: Sound books are another great option for babies as the engaging noises – whether they are songs, rhymes, or animal sounds, can be a fun sensory experience for little ones.
  5. Reviews: Check the reviews left by other parents to determine if a book is suitable for your child. Their testimonials will help you identify parent-recommended options that are suited to your little one.

When To Start Reading To Your Baby?

Wedetso Chirhah is an experienced product writer and reviewer specializing in books, automobiles, and other household appliances. He has written this post on the best books for one-year-olds after conducting an in-depth examination of the content of each book and going through the reviews of parents and caretakers. He has also put together a curated buying guide to help you make an informed decision and choose the right product to suit your needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I give books to a one-year-old?

Yes, books can be a great way to grab and retain the attention of a one-year-old. Reading books to a one-year-old can help them improve their vocabulary through practice and imitation (1).

2. How many books should a one-year-old have?

There is no limit to the number of books a one-year-old can have. However, make sure that you use one book at a time and finish it before moving on to another.

3. How do I introduce books to my one-year-old?

You can introduce books to your one-year-old by reading with them or showing them the pictures from the books. Letting your toddler choose a book or turn its pages can make them feel involved and interested in reading books.

Why Trust MomJunction?

Wedetso Chirhah is an experienced product writer and reviewer specializing in books, automobiles, and other household appliances. He has written this post on the best books for one-year-olds after conducting market research and going through the reviews of customers and users. He has also put together a curated buying guide to help you make an informed decision and choose the right product to suit your needs.

No child is too young to enjoy a good book. Many parents read to their children while still in the womb to help foster the parent-child bond. However, when choosing a book for your one-year-old, choose one from a trusted brand or author and ensure it has bright, interesting images and an entertaining storyline to grasp their attention. You can look for stories about kindness, friendship, and family to help develop positive emotions. Reading helps them create a rich network of words, and they learn to express themselves. So, we hope our list of the best books for one-year-olds can help you understand the available options.

Infographic: What Are The Various Kinds Of Books For A One-Year-Old?

Books for one-year-old babies are engaging and educational tools that promote early literacy, parent-child bonding time, and cognitive development. Understanding the different categories of these books can help you choose the ones that suit your baby’s needs the most. Check out the infographic below to discover the various types of books for one-year-olds and their unique features.

Books For One Year Olds (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team

Get high-quality PDF version by clicking below.

Download Infographic in PDF version Download Infographic
Download Infographic in PDF version


MomJunction's articles are written after analyzing the research works of expert authors and institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You can learn more about the authenticity of the information we present in our editorial policy.
  1. How to teach your child to love reading
  2. Reading Books to Babies

Recommended Articles

Was this article helpful?
The following two tabs change content below.