We got asked and here’s our pick of the seven most beautifully illustrated storybooks for children. We believe each is destined to fill bedtime reading with wonder and enchantment as well as stimulate the development of your child’s eye for aesthetics.
Pax by Sara Pennypacker
From bestselling and award-winning author Sara Pennypacker comes a beautifully wrought, utterly compelling novel about the powerful relationship between a boy and his fox. Pax is destined to become a classic, beloved for generations to come.
Pax and Peter have been inseparable ever since Peter rescued him as a kit. But one day, the unimaginable happens: Peter’s dad enlists in the military and makes him return the fox to the wild. At his grandfather’s house, three hundred miles away from home, Peter knows he isn’t where he should be with Pax. He strikes out on his own despite the encroaching war, spurred by love, loyalty, and grief, to be reunited with his fox. Meanwhile Pax, steadfastly waiting for his boy, embarks on adventures and discoveries of his own.
Maps by Aleksandra Mizielinska
This book of maps is a visual feast for readers of all ages, with lavishly drawn illustrations from the incomparable Mizielinskis. It features not only borders, cities, rivers, and peaks, but also places of historical and cultural interest, eminent personalities, iconic animals and plants, cultural events, and many more fascinating facts associated with every region of our planet.
To the Sea by Cale Atkinson
Sometimes Tim feels invisible at school—until one day, when Tim meets Sam. But Sam isn’t just any new friend: he’s a blue whale, and he can’t find his way home. Returning Sam to the sea is hard work, but Tim is determined to help. After all, it’s not every day you meet a new friend. This picture book about the power of friendship by new talent Cale Atkinson is brought to life by charming, dynamic illustrations.
Orion and the Dark by Emma Yarlett
Orion is scared of a lot of things, but most of all he’s scared of the dark. So one night the Dark decides to take Orion on an adventure. Emma Yarlett’s second picture book combines her incredible storytelling and artwork with die-cut pages that bring the Dark to life.
Wolfie the Bunny by Ame Dyckman
Families of all kinds will delight in this sweet tale of new babies, sibling rivalry, bravery, unconditional love…and veggies!
The Bunny family has adopted a wolf son, and daughter Dot is the only one who realizes Wolfie can–and might–eat them all up! Dot tries to get through to her parents, but they are too smitten to listen. A new brother takes getting used to, and when (in a twist of fate) it’s Wolfie who’s threatened, can Dot save the day?
Swan: The Life and Dance of Anna Pavlova by Laurel Snyder
One night, young Anna’s mother takes her to the ballet, and everything is changed. So begins the journey of a girl who will one day grow up to be the most famous prima ballerina of all time, inspiring legions of dancers after her: the brave, the generous, the transcendently gifted Anna Pavlova. Swan: The Life and Dance of Anna Pavlova is a heartbreakingly beautiful picture book biography perfect for aspiring ballerinas of all ages.
The Snow Rabbit by Camille Garoche
wo sisters look longingly through their window at the snowy sky. One goes out and sculpts a little rabbit, but when she brings it back inside to her wheelchair-bound sister, it begins to melt. So they take it outside and into the forest where enchanted things begin to happen. A follow up to her hauntingly beautiful Fox’s Garden, Camille Garoche (a.k.a. Princess Camcam) mounts paper cut scenes into dioramas that are then meticulously lit and photographed, lending the illustrations depth and heightened drama. Steeped in subtle detail and unspoken emotion, The Snow Rabbit is a book to cherish.
Images: courtesy of Amazon.com