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10 of the Best Valentine’s Children’s Books

February 2, 2016

Reading to Baby Photo

Psst… Be sure to enter for a chance to win a set of all 10 of these fun reads for you + your little one. Enter at the end of the post. 

One of the things I love most about having little ones is that it really takes the pressure off of Valentine’s Day for me. Instead of all the expectations of big and grandiose gestures from my single and newly wed days, now it’s mainly a fun holiday to celebrate with my three little girls.

A fun breakfast, a few chocolates, and some simple decorations and it is a holiday our whole family can enjoy. Of course, as a children’s librarian and huge bookworm one of my favorite ways to celebrate is with a stack of festive books that I can read with my babies.

And if my husband and I can sneak in a little date, well, that’s just the icing on the cake.

Here are 10 of our family’s favorite choices, perfect for babies and toddlers.

Counting Kisses by Karen Katz This is one of our most beloved books – our copy is practically shredded. The whole family helps put the baby to bed, kissing different body parts from ears to toes, counting down from 10 to one. The bright colors and sweet illustrations are just darling.

The Day It Rained Hearts by Felicia Bond This book is a reprint of the 1983 version (it used to be called Four Valentines in a Rainstorm) and is so sweet, about a little girl walking home in a rainstorm of hearts. She catches them and takes them home to make cards for her friends, each of them unique. It’s the coziest little book and perfect to read before making valentines of your own.

Huggy Kissy by Leslie Patricelli I LOVE Leslie Patricelli. Her simple illustrations and colored backgrounds are so easy on baby eyes and the simple text is perfect for little ones (plus, it doesn’t take forever to read – a big plus when you want to read a quick story and toss everyone in bed).

I Ruff You by Sandra Magsamen Board book meets stuffed animal in this darling little book with plush ears sticking out of the top. This book details all the ways that the mommy “ruffs” her baby.

Here Comes Valentine Cat by Claudia Rueda Claudia Reuda’s holiday series is amazing (check out the Santa Cat one!). In this one, the off-screen narrator tries to convince Cat to make a valentine for the neighbor dog. Cat, unsurprisingly, is not convinced. My girls howl with laughter over these books, and so so I.

My Heart Is Like a Zoo by Michael Hall I haven’t met many little ones who don’t love animals, and this clever book has zoo animals made entirely out of different-sized and colored hearts. The best part is the ending, where the zookeeper turns out to be a little child snuggled in bed with all his stuffed animals.

Snowy Valentine by David Petersen When a rabbit sets out to find a gift for his wife, he queries animals all over the valley, including a brush with a fox who wants to make the rabbit into a Valentine’s stew. In the end, his walk creates footprints in the shape of a giant heart.

Plant a Kiss by Amy Krouse Rosenthal We throw around the phrase “planting a kiss” all the time – but what would that really look like? This beautiful and glittery book shows a little girl planting a kiss and the amazing growth that comes out of it. It’s just a magical little story and I always love a book with an unusual shape (this one is long and thin).

Hug by Jez Alborough This little monkey needs a hug, but every time he asks a friend, they turn to their mothers and hug them instead. Can Bobo get a hug for himself? (Make sure you steal a hug for yourself at the end of the book).

A Kiss for Little Bear by Else Holmelund Minarik, illustrated by Maurice Sendak These Little Bear books have been favorites of mine since my own childhood. They have that old-fashioned feel, sweet stories, and no one illustrates like Maurice Sendak (he’s most famous for Where the Wild Things Are).


This post is written by children’s librarian (and self-proclaimed bookworm), blogger and mom Janssen Bradshaw. Read more from Janssen on her blog, Everyday Reading

Now’s your chance—enter below to win a set of these 10 books. Two lucky winners will be chosen!
Valentine’s Children’s Books Giveaway

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64 thoughts on “10 of the Best Valentine’s Children’s Books


Brittany Maddux

This is so sweet! Reading is one of my little boys favorite things! XOXO


sara E.

I am so excited to read to our little boy once he is here!


Amanda Heck

We plan on reading our little guy Valentine Cat!


Shayna Russo

We love reading about holidays, these are such awesome choices!


Kelsey McAuliffe

My daughter likes her Sofia the First books, as well as “Be Patient, Pandora”



We love to read to our little one. Current favorite (hers and ours) is The Little Blue Truck!


These are perfect for the new baby



I love reading I love you through and through. Also 5 little ducklings. She loves the ducks.


Annie Stapp

My 11 month old loves brown bear. We read it at least twice a day


Taylor Alies Clark

We LOVE reading ‘If you’re a robot,’ and ‘Little Blue Truck.’


Laura Royal

I like ‘Oh, the places you will go’ by dr Seuss.


Kelsey Mundschau

We absolutely love reading to our kids- with our first whom we lost we read to him through pregnancy and his short life and we have been reading daily to Hendrix since this pregnancy began. Whenever anyone asks us what we want for him it’s an owlet monitor and books! Haha surprisingly we have none of these in our collection yet and they would be nice additions.



I love Grandfather Twilight !


Lauren Lyne

Super cute books! Love reading to my
Little one!


Aleczandria Sorrell

“On the Night You Were Born” gets me everytime. It’s her favorite book.


Kira N

We love Huggy Kissy. I’m looking forward to finding the rest of these. My daughter picks up book after book every night for us to read to her.


Stephanie Marie

My son loves cuddling at night reading all sorts of different books, he is starting to read all on his own. 🙂 One of his favorites is If you give a mouse a cookie, my favorite will always be love you forever.


Hailey litchfield

Reading is part of our nightly routine! We love Ten Tiny Toes.


Kelsey Frenes

We love “The Crown on Your Head” by Nancy Tillman. She is a wonderful Author and Illistrator. All of her books are great!!


Susana L

I am excited to order and read Hello Moon to my nephew.



Would love these to start our little one’s library!


Melissa white

We love “I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as I’m living my baby you’ll be”.


Rebecca McGrouty

Love this list, thank you!


Rachel Allen

These look like some really cute books!

Lauren Kay

I love reading my baby holiday themed books to get him excited about upcoming events. I really hope to add all of these to our collection


Ashley Field

I love reading to my 2 year old son and his unborn brother (due Easter March 27) Little Toot by Hardie Gramatky. Little Toot was our children’s Great grandmothers favorite book and she passed down her copy of when she was a kid for us to read to our boys.


Lea Aparis

Some standout books I remember from when I was little are “Goodnight Moon,” “The Very Hungry Caterpillar,” and “My Baby You’ll Be.” Looking forward to reading these and “Giraffe’s Can’t Dance” to my little girl, upon her arrival!


Jessica Ehrhart

Would love to win! Surprisingly we don’t have any of these in our Valentine’s Day collection.

Allyson R

What a great list! I plan on giving my little ones a book for Valentines Day!



We love the Sandra Boy ton books right now!


Melissa K

We love the Usborne book! Favorites right now are That’s Not My Angel and That’s Not My Monkey


Chelsea Alexander

We love all the Bear books (bear’s new friend, bear’s loose tooth, bear stays up for Christmas).


Cassandra Eastman

Our favorite right now is The Very Hungry Caterpillar! My 6 and 4 year old love to help read it to their baby brother.



My daughter loves brown bear brown bear!



On the night you were born, love love this book. I want to be your personal penguin is another…it’s a sing along too!



What great book recommendations! My son loves “Where the Wild Things Are” and “Goodnight Moon”.


Tiffany P.

We love pinkalicious, Eric carle and pete the cat books! The first book I vwe bought for my first daughter was my favorite as a kiddo…The Velveteen Rabbit.


Leslie S

Love these recommendations! Just requested a number of them from our library. Thank you!


Kimberly W

Great list! I’m a new mom building our book collection and I love these suggestions.



Always a delight to find more Valentine’s Day books. I’ve only read half of these, but it would be so fun to have all of them in our personal collection!


Heather C

I love the book BabyCakes by Karma Wilson. I love kissing her little nose and toes while I read, too!



This is an awesome list, thank you!!


Elizabeth Goertz

Looks like I missed the question haha we love to read Goodnight Moon 🙂


Elizabeth Goertz

These all look so sweet, would love to read them to my littles! 🙂



All these books sound very sweet. I’ve always appreciated the sincerity of Little Bear books and would particularly love to add A Kiss for Little Bear to my baby’s collection.


Ellen S

What a fun way to celebrate with my little loves!!



Fun collection of books! Since my kids are little it doesn’t take much to get them excited for a holiday and books are our favorite way to celebrate!



Little Bear is so sweet.



I’ve never seen or read any of these books and was thinking the other day I didn’t know of any good Valentine books… beside Guess How Much I Love You and Love You forever.

Currently our favorite books are the Kids National geographic books and specialized books (ones about war airplanes, big digging tractors, dinosaurs, etc.)


Rebecca S

I also really love I Love You Stinky Face and Sandra Boynton’s Snuggle Puppy even though they aren’t explicitly Valentine’s Day books.



thanks for a great list of books! now I just need a budget to match my Amazon wishlist ☺️


Sarah C

I love Janssen’s recommendations!



I love all the Duck and Goose books! Goose needs a hug is one of my favorites for sure. So adorable! I used to read them to all my friends’ babies, but am now excited to share them (and many of these great suggestions) with my own son born this last November!



Our recent favorite that could be considered a Valentine’s book is If Animals Kissed Goodnight. It’s adorable and has just the right amount of silliness.


Jessica Pieper

“Wolfie the Bunny” is one of our very favorites at our house. When it is able to make kids and parents giggle together, you know it has to be good!


Jessica Dunn

My son loves the Pout Pout Fish books! We love to read!


Veronica R.

We love reading Dr. Seuss right now.


Emily McIntyre

My favorites to read are any Sandra Boynton books. My youngest likes Barnyard Dance best.



It’ll be a few years, but I can’t wait to read “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” with our little girl ❤️


alexis ainscough

so fun! i just love Valentine’s Day and would be over the moon thrilled to win these books!


What a great list! Reading is so important, I cannot wait to read to my little niece when she arrives! I especially love “What do you do with an Idea?”



I would absolutely love to gift these adorable books to my four month old for Valentine’s Day to read and treasure for a lifetime!!


Casey H

I like the old classics from when I was little…Golden Books. Bernstein Bears. My husband has already purchased the Gb Ugly Duckling. It was his fav.


Kylie Wasylyshen

I plan on reading to my little one all the time once they arrive – these all sound great!