Top 10 Best Children's Books About Love

Children will learn about all sorts of different types of love with these wonderful books, whether it's between relatives, friends, siblings or partners. Ordered by target age, these vibrant books are packed with moving messages, quirky characters and enchanting storylines.

1. Guess How Much I Love You

Sam McBratney | 3+

This simple but perfectly poignant story follows a Big Nutbrown Hare and a Little Nutbrown Hare, who increasingly use larger and larger measures to express how much they love each other. The book features idyllic illustrations by Anita Jeram and a wonderful message about the boundless love between parent and child.

2. The Big Book of Love

Laurence Anholt | 3+

Little ones will love the delightful rhymes and enchanting pictures of this gorgeous book, which contains so much to spot and talk about! Colours, transport, animals, cities, seasides and all sorts of people fill this book to the brim with fun, creating a rip-roaring rhyming celebration of love and life, perfect for parents and children to share.

3. Sometimes...

Emma Dodd | 3+

In this gentle and beautiful book, a mother elephant reassures her little calf that no matter what he does or who he is, she will always love him unconditionally. The perfect bedtime story, this spellbinding book will help children drift off to sleep, reassured of how much their parent loves them.

4. Love Monster

Rachel Bright | 3+

In the adorable, fluffy world of Cutesville, it can be tough being the only funny-looking monster - but this monster is not one to sit around and mope! Instead, he sets off to look for someone who'l love him. He looks high, low, and everywhere in between, and when he's just about to give up, he finally finds what he's looking for. This book is gorgeously-illustrated and full of character, and will show children that everyone - no matter how funny-looking! - can find love.

5. Grandpa's Great Escape

David Walliams | 9+

Jack thinks his grandpa is just a regular old man, wearing slippers to the supermarket and constantly forgetting Jack's name - but it turns out this old man can still take to the skies and save the day! Featuring soaring spitfire journeys over London and thrilling escapes through the city, this riveting adventure is all about the bond between grandparent and grandchild.

6. Little Women

Louisa May Alcott | 9+

Follow Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy as they must face the hardest of times and pull together, whilst their father goes to fight in the civil war. Though they may be poor, their lives are rich with colour and fun as they play games, put on dramatic theatricals, make new friends, argue, grapple with vices, learn from mistakes, nurse each other, and get into all sorts of trouble. This stunning tale is sure to enchant young readers, featuring the unconditional love between sisters and the challenges they face.

7. War Horse

Michael Morpurgo | 9+

In this gripping tale, a horse named Joey witnesses the deadly reality of battle from both sides of the trenches in the First World War. He will come to understand the chaotic power of war, and the boundless beauty of peace and love. His owner, Albert, is determined to bring his beloved horse home safely. This engrossing story, which features the unique relationship between a horse and its owner, is a favourite with kids, parents and teachers alike, and has been adapted for film and stage.

8. My Sister Jodie

Jacqueline Wilson | 11+

Pearl is a quiet, thoughtful girl, in awe of her big sister Jodie, who is confident, brash and bold - but has become a liability for their parents. The family moves to the countryside, where the children's parents become the cook and the caretaker at a boarding school. Throughout a succession of turbulent events - featuring love, betrayal and jealousy - will Pearl and Jodie be able to pull together and maintain the close bond they've always shared? This heart-rending and gripping tale will captivate young readers.

9. Noughts and Crosses

Malorie Blackman | 11+

This moving and powerful novel subverts social history to compelling effect. Callum is white, and a lowly Nought; Sephy is black, a privileged Cross and the daughter of a powerful politician. Despite their segregated society, they maintain a close friendship throughout their childhood, which inevitably blossoms into something more. But can their love endure hardship, heartbreak, loss and division? This story is filled with unpredictable twists and turns, and is riddled with gripping subplots.

10. The Fault in Our Stars

John Green | 13+

Full of poignant observations about life, death, illness and love, this book follows Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus Waters, two young cancer sufferers who meet at a cancer support group. The two develop a friendship that 'slowly, and then all at once' becomes love, peaking with an eventful trip to Amsterdam together. Both heart-breaking and humorous, this beautiful tale will make you laugh, cry, reflect and ruminate.

    Laurence Anholt
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    All you need is love - whether you are big or small. Your small one will delight in the pitch-perfect rhymes and detailed pictures with so much to spot and talk about; the friendly and familar depictions of everyday life will engage young children time and time again. Colours, transport, animals, cities, seasides and people of every kind dance through this charming book creating a romping, rhyming celebration of life for all to share. Perfect for every day and every family, this latest classic in the Anholt library would also make a wonderful gift for Valentine's Day and any festive occassion as it is bursting with love!
  • JOD2 9 years +
    Jacqueline Wilson
    9 years +
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    In Jacqueline Wilson's My Sister Jodie, Pearl and Jodie are sisters with very different personalities. Pearl is quiet and studious and used to letting her brash sister Jodie lead the way. When the family moves to a large boarding school where the children's mum and dad become the cook and the caretaker, however, the balance is dramatically altered and things may never be the same again... Jacqueline Wilson fans aged 9 + will love My Sister Jodie.
  • NUX2 12 years +
    Malorie Blackman
    12 years +
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    Malorie Blackman's bestselling dystopian novel Noughts & Crosses launches a superb young adult fiction trilogy.

    Callum, a lowly Nought, and Sephy, a Cross and the daughter of a powerful politician, are childhood friends who eventually fall in love. Increasing animosity between the two families leads Callum and Sephy to see each other in secret. But for how long? Written alternately in the voices of Sephy and Callum, this is a powerful and perfectly paced novel with a provocative plot line to keep readers on tenterhooks.

    Suitable for those aged 12 and over, Noughts and Crosses was chosen as a World Book Night book in 2013.

    This children's book has been hand-picked for you by Red House.
  • LWN2 9 years +
    Louisa May Alcott
    9 years +
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    Little Women is the warm and touching tale of the four March sisters: sensible Meg, tomboy Jo, shy Beth and fiery Amy and the trials they face struggling to make ends meet while their father is away from home. This classic tale is perfect for reading aloud to youngsters or ideal for confident young readers aged 9+ to tackle independently.

    Little Women is narrated by Jo, who is fiercely independent and desperate to become a writer, but she and her sisters' ambitions are frustrated by lack of money and a series of misfortunes.

    Absorbing and inspiring, Little Women is a must-read classic that is guaranteed to make you laugh and cry.
  • WHQ2 9 years +
    Michael Morpurgo
    9 years +
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    In War Horse, award-winning children's author Michael Morpurgo allows readers to understand the horror of the First World War by recounting the experiences of a farm horse who is commandeered to join the front line.

    The unbeatable storytelling skills of Michael Morpurgo make War Horse a stunning, unputdownable tale that won't fail to move all readers from 9+. As Steven Spielberg's epic film version gained a whole new audience for this stunning piece of literature, there's never been a better time to read the book.
  • FUL2 13 years +
    John Green
    13 years +
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    John Green, the author of Looking for Alaska and Paper Towns, is one of the most popular voices in contemporary young adult fiction and The Fault in Our Stars became an instant classic.

    You will probably have been in tears watching the big-screen adaptation that starred Shailene Woodley and Ansel Engort as the devoted teenage lovers Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus Waters and the book is just as heart-wrenching and poignant, but keeps a fine line in self-depreciating humour - especially from the wise-beyond-her-years Hazel.

    After meeting at a cancer support group, the cynical sufferer Hazel unexpectedly finds herself falling for the charms of Augustus and the novel follows the two as their relationship develops - taking in a romantic trip to Amsterdam in the process.

    Full of wit, sensitivity and observations about life and illness, this profound book will make readers of any age (especially teens) laugh and cry in equal measure.
  • GUV2 Toddlers
    Sam McBratney
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    The story of Little and Big Nutbrown Hare's efforts to express their love for each other has long been a favourite of ours at Red House - and with the book selling over 18 million copies worldwide, many generations of readers also love this touching tale.

    This beautiful 20th anniversary edition of Guess How Much I Love You comes in an enlarged board book format that little ones will cherish forever. The gorgeous story will be enjoyed time and time again - it's a true classic and this version is robust enough to withstand even the most terrible of toddler tantrums.

    Adored by children and adults alike, the simple story and endearing illustrations make this an unbeatable bedtime read 20 years on from first publication.
    Emma Dodd
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    Emma Dodd's four popular picture books are now available in a chunky boardbook format. Illustrated in her appealing iconic style. In Sometimes - a mother elephant assures her child that no matter what he does and who he is, she loves him unconditionally.
    Rachel Bright
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    Featuring the only Monster in Cutesville, LOVE MONSTER is a wonderfully warm and witty look at how sometimes, when you least expect it, love finds you...From a phenomenal picture book talent. It can be tough being the only funny-looking Monster in Cutesville, but this Monster is not one to hang around and feel sorry for himself, so he's off - out into the big wide world to look for someone to love him. He looks high, he looks low and he looks everywhere in-between, but it's only when he's just about to give up that he finally finds what he is looking for...Featuring an instantly charming main character who will appeal to children and adults alike, LOVE MONSTER is a warm and witty tale about the power of taking action from a terrific talent new to the HarperCollins list.
  • GPGE 9 years +
    David Walliams
    9 years +
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    David Walliams' novels have had such a huge impact on children's fiction that now many people see the actor, comedian and fundraiser as an author first. Full of heart and humour, his stories look at issues that affect all children and have devilishly Dahl-style anarchy running through them.

    Following the success of Demon Dentist, Mr. Stink and The Boy in the Dress, we're delighted to be offering you his latest bestseller, Grandpa's Great Escape. Jack's Grandpa may wear his slippers to the supermarket and constantly forget Jack's name but he can still take to the skies and save the day.

    With spitfire journeys over London and great escapes through the city, this is an exciting adventure about the bond between grandparent and grandchild. It's also full of Walliams' long-time collaborator Tony Ross' distinctive illustrations.