Longform Picture Books: A List From Twitter

My daughter, age 7, loves picture books, but I find that many of them lack the complex plotting and sophisticated language she’s come to enjoy in the easy readers & middle-grade chapter books we read together.

I asked the good people of Twitter to help me — jog my memory, give me some fresh ideas — of longform picture books.

Herewith, a list, in no particular order. The list is a mix of authors & specific titles (with authors):

  • Canterbury Tales, retold by Marcia Williams
  • Patricia Polacco
  • Hattie & The Wild Waves, by Barbara Cooney
  • The Oxcart Man, by Barbara Cooney
  • The King’s Stilts, The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins & Bartholomew and the Oobleck, all by Dr. Seuss
  • Jill Barklem
  • Babar series by de Brunhoff (warning: racism/colonialism)
  • Polo series, by Regis Faller (wordless)
  • Trina Schart Hyman’s many retellings of fairy tales
  • Wizardology/Pirateology/Dragonology/Mythology books
  • Babymouse series by Jennifer L. Holm
  • Rapunzel’s Revenge by Shannon Hale
  • Mouse Guard, by David Peterson
  • Minpins, by Roald Dahl
  • Melisande, by E. Nesbit
  • A Bad Case of Stripes, by David Shannon
  • The Girl in the Castle Inside the Museum, by Kate Bernheimer
  • Archie Comics
  • The Invention of Hugo Cabret, by Brian Selznick
  • Wonderstruck, by Brian Selznick
  • Mercy Watson series by Kate DiCamillo
  • Douglas Florian
  • The Pet Project, by Lisa Wheeler
  • Talking Eggs, by Robert San Souci & Jerry Pinkney
  • Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters, John Steptoe
  • Wizard of Oz & Peter Pan (both pop-ups) by Robert Sabuda
  • Beatrix Potter

Many thanks to everyone who responded to my query with such great suggestions!

Do you have other suggestions? Let us know in the comments!


3 responses

  1. I thought of several more since the Twitter conversation!

    – Tomie De Paola, especially Strega Nona
    – Harry the Dirty Dog
    – Paul Zelinsky’s fairy tale books
    – Jan Pienkowski, especially his fairy tale collection
    – books by both Arnold and Anita Lobel
    – Amanda and Her Alligator by Mo Willems–one not as many people know, and a little more in the early reader direction
    – Atinuke’s Anna Hibiscus series (early chapter books)–these are more chapter books but do have illustrations as well
    – Lucy’s Summer & Lucy’s Winter by Donald Hall–nice old Americana books–possibly a bit dated in attitude, though I don’t remember anything specific

  2. We have big Babymouse fans over here, and Zara the Space Girl and the Mal and Chad series have been nice additions to that not-too-scary graphic novel collection.

  3. When Jessie Came Across the Sea is a personal favorite.

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