From picture books to graphic novels, fantasy to family fun, these must-read books have the power to hook both boys and girls. Some are cultural touchstones that belong in every kid's library. Others open kids' minds to cultures beyond their own. And some are modern releases that have the timeless quality of classics -- the kinds that get handed down to siblings and passed around classrooms. Whether you have a reluctant reader or budding bookworm, check out these surefire, kid-tested titles. (We've included a few rated best for 12 and up for the precocious readers out there!)
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When you purchase the Geno 2.0 Next Gen Helix Product, you will receive a saliva collection kit from our partner Helix. When you return your saliva sample to Helix, Helix will sequence your DNA. That sequence is your “Genetic Information.” Helix will share with National Geographic the portion of your Genetic Information needed by National Geographic to provide you with your deep ancestry insights (we’re calling this your “Genographic Genetic Information”). We will use this Genographic Genetic Information to produce your Geno 2.0 Next Gen Helix Product results.
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This breezy story starts with Circle rolling, bumping into Triangle then popping, turning thereby into smaller circles that cause Square to sneeze a flurry of shapes — Diamond, Star, etc.. — that bounce into and bend Line. Eventually, Octagon has to break everyone up and Heart has to straighten Line and repair Circle. The illustrations are as simple as the story, playful and clear. It is clearly a book written to conform to the wishes of children, not how we wish children to be, but nonetheless adeptly communicates both geometry and personal responsibility.
How do you capture love and all of its various permutations on the page, let alone make it palatable for young readers? Somehow, Pena and illustrator Loren Long are able to do both in this book. As a collection of poems about the titular emotion, this book is successful because de la Pena is a good writer and a great observer who documents love in all its forms; from a baby hearing his parents’ voices to a child looking in the mirror. The poem dances on the precipice of precious but sticks the landing. And even if you think love is a battlefield, the illustration by Loren Long will soften you enough to let this one in.

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“Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? from Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle. All of my babies have loved this book. We all have it memorized and when we are in the car and the youngest one gets fussy we all start reciting the book, with the same pace and inflection I did when they were all babies. I always give it as a gift for a baby shower or first birthday.” ― Wendy Fortner
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