100 books like Kind

By Alison Green,

Here are 100 books that Kind fans have personally recommended if you like Kind. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Rabbit Listened

Dan Saks Author Of We Share This School: A Community Book

From my list on proving humans are more creative than AI.

Why am I passionate about this?

I make music. I write books. I’m drawn to scenarios in which people make music or books or art collaboratively, often spontaneously. I enjoy making music with kids because of how they can be creative spontaneously. Sometimes adults pretend to be creative in a way that a child might relate to, but a child can generally sniff out a pretender. And a pretend pretender can be unpleasant company for children and adults alike. These books were written by adults who know their inner child. Wonder, play and a tangential regard for social norms are their baseline to share the stories they’ve chosen to share.

Dan's book list on proving humans are more creative than AI

Dan Saks Why did Dan love this book?

Simple drawings, simple text, nails the moral with an absolute gut punch that feels just right. It’s got expert pacing! It’s got animals!

This book has won a million awards for a reason. The plot? Taylor builds a thing with blocks. It gets knocked down. Different animals present different strategies for coping, but ultimately Taylor just needed someone to listen to him. Enter rabbit.

So simple! And sooooo human. AI wishes it could distill an essential human experience like this. But it can’t - yet - I don’t think. So prbtrbrtb.

By Cori Doerrfeld,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked The Rabbit Listened as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With its spare, poignant text and irresistibly sweet illustrations, The Rabbit Listened is a tender meditation on loss. When something terrible happens, Taylor doesn't know where to turn. All the animals are sure they have the answer. The chicken wants to talk it out, but Taylor doesn't feel like chatting. The bear thinks Taylor should get angry, but that's not quite right either. One by one, the animals try to tell Taylor how to process this loss, and one by one they fail. Then the rabbit arrives. All the rabbit does is listen, which is just what Taylor needs. Whether…


Book cover of How Kind!

Leslie Kimmelman Author Of The Eight Knights of Hanukkah

From my list on more elusive than ever kindness.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am no expert on kindness—though more than twenty years at Sesame Workshop, working on a TV show that focuses on kindness, may give me a slight edge. And I am not unfailingly kind, though I try my hardest. But I am passionate about nurturing this quality in children. At the risk of sounding naive, I feel that it’s our last best hope of solving some of the world’s biggest problems.  

Leslie's book list on more elusive than ever kindness

Leslie Kimmelman Why did Leslie love this book?

This charming story showcases kindness pared down to its most basic: Kindness feels great to both the giver and the receiver, and it’s easily passed from one person (or, in this case, animal) to another.  Hen is kind to Pig, who in turn is kind to Rabbit, and so on, until the circle is complete. The simple, repetitive text and joyful, brightly-colored illustrations make me smile—and make this book an ideal choice for sharing with very young children.

By Mary Murphy,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked How Kind! as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What goes around comes around in this farmyard tale about the contagiousness of kindness.

Hen gives Pig an unexpected present. "How kind!" says Pig. Pig is so touched, in fact, that he decides to do something kind too. So Pig gives Rabbit a gift. "How kind!" says Rabbit, who does something kind for Cow, who is kind to Cat, who wants to be kind in turn. Where will all of this kindness lead?


Book cover of We Don't Eat Our Classmates

Amanda Noll Author Of I Need My Monster

From my list on humorous picture books from someone who loves funny kid books.

Why am I passionate about this?

I never actually stopped reading children’s literature. Even as a grown-up, I figured out a way to read picture books every day. After earning a master’s degree in education, I found myself back in the library reading to students. I love reading funny books; they are more engaging and more likely to get kids reading and keep them reading. I love humor and think it is perfect in the shorter format of picture books. 

Amanda's book list on humorous picture books from someone who loves funny kid books

Amanda Noll Why did Amanda love this book?

I love to read this as the school year is beginning. Children can identify with feeling different on the first day of school.

I love how Penelope (the main character who happens to be a T Rex) is blithely oblivious to the impact she has on the students around her. The tables are turned when she crosses paths with a hungry goldfish. 

By Ryan T. Higgins,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked We Don't Eat Our Classmates as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, and 5.

What is this book about?

It's the first day of school for Penelope Rex, and she can't wait to meet her classmates. But it's hard to make human friends when they're so darn delicious! That is, until Penelope gets a taste of her own medicine and finds she may not be at the top of the food chain after all. . . . Readers will gobble up this hilarious new story from award-winning author-illustrator Ryan T. Higgins.


Book cover of We're All Wonders

Leslie Kimmelman Author Of The Eight Knights of Hanukkah

From my list on more elusive than ever kindness.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am no expert on kindness—though more than twenty years at Sesame Workshop, working on a TV show that focuses on kindness, may give me a slight edge. And I am not unfailingly kind, though I try my hardest. But I am passionate about nurturing this quality in children. At the risk of sounding naive, I feel that it’s our last best hope of solving some of the world’s biggest problems.  

Leslie's book list on more elusive than ever kindness

Leslie Kimmelman Why did Leslie love this book?

Adapted by the author from her bestselling Wonder, this book is more of a wish for kindness than an actual portrayal of kindness. Auggie looks different from anyone else, but inside he wants the same things: to have friends, to go on adventures, to be loved for himself. Besides, isn’t everyone different in one way or another? It’s a lovely book to read with young children, leading them to the realization that acceptance is not only the best choice, but also the choice that opens up an enormous world of possibilities. As the author concludes, Look with kindness and you will always find wonder.

By R.J. Palacio,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked We're All Wonders as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 4, 5, 6, and 7.

What is this book about?

I know I can't change the way I look. But maybe, just maybe, people can change the way they see...

For younger readers, the unforgettable story of August Pullman and Wonder reimagined in this gorgeous picture book.

With spare, powerful text and richly-imagined illustrations, We're All Wonders shows readers what it's like to live in Auggie's world - a world in which he feels like any other kid, but he's not always seen that way.

We're All Wonders taps into every child's longing to belong, and to be seen for who they truly are. It's the perfect way for families…


Book cover of Am I Really Ready for A Puppy?

Argyro Graphy Author Of Inspiring Children to be Kind

From my list on children’s books where kindness wins every time.

Why am I passionate about this?

I know first hand the damage that bullying can have on children, It weighs heavy on your psyche, and emotional well-being. I was determined to find a way to teach children important values to fight the root causes of bullying. I found an old "sketch" and it was my "aha" moment. With continued tweaking, my bubbly hippo was born that I named Bentley. Sporting his red running shoes, Bentley has become a positive role model for children. He represents resilience, friendship, joy, and kindness. We all grew up hugging a teddy bear, but now it's time for the World to Hug a Hippo. The books I've picked below inspire me and will help kids learn the value of kindness. 

Argyro's book list on children’s books where kindness wins every time

Argyro Graphy Why did Argyro love this book?

Being kind is not only doing something, but kindness is also knowing when you are not ready or responsible enough to care for something like a pet. Oftentimes we think of ourselves and our wants and overlook our capabilities and responsibilities.

By Doliah Snead,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Am I Really Ready for A Puppy? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

So many children think puppies are so cute, and they desperately want one, not truly understanding the responsibility that comes along with it. This novel is about a little boy who was one of those kids who desperately wanted a puppy, or so he thought. He learns the cost of having a puppy, both financially and physically. Teachers, parents, and students will find an extension activity at the end of this novel that tie Reading, Language Arts, Writing, and Math together with one story. Students are asked to find the total amount this family spent, research specific breeds, and calculate…


Book cover of The Boy with Flowers in His Hair

Tim Warnes Author Of Dangerous!

From my list on for teaching kids empathy.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a writer, illustrator, and champion of children’s books, with approximately 90 titles published over the last 25 years. I use this experience to guide parents to quality picture books via my blog, Stories Worth Sharing, which aims to help parents nurture and connect with their kids through stories. I can trace this passion back to my childhood. Snuggled in my father’s arms, we’d explore fantastic places together – like One Hundred Acre Wood, Busy Town, and Zuckerman’s barn. Picture books are foundational in developing young minds. These selected titles put your child in someone else’s shoes and teach them to empathise with others.

Tim's book list on for teaching kids empathy

Tim Warnes Why did Tim love this book?

This beautiful book blows me away. It’s an exquisite example of a picture book, where words and pictures work hand in hand to tell the story. Everyone loves David, the boy with the flowers in his hair. He’s the life and soul of the class. Until one day, something happens. Now David – quiet and withdrawn – is losing his flowers, petal by petal…

The Boy With Flowers in His Hair speaks to me on a personal level – I’ve overcome depression and recognise that feeling of losing your joie de vivre. Over the years, I’ve also examined the ideas of what it means to be masculine. On both fronts, this book is affirming. And it reminds me to be thankful for faithful friends.

By Jarvis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Boy with Flowers in His Hair as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, 5, and 6.

What is this book about?

A warm and powerful story that brings to life a pure and poignant friendship that children will never forget.

David is the boy with flowers in his hair. He's sweet and gentle, just like his petals. But when David's flowers begin to fall - a single petal at first, then every last blossom - his best friend never leaves his side. And through kindness and creativity, he even finds a way to give David his colour back... Beautifully illustrated, this story is about being there for someone when they're at their most vulnerable.


Book cover of The Language of Flowers

Jessica Roux Author Of Floriography: An Illustrated Guide to the Victorian Language of Flowers

From my list on illustrated florals.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always been fascinated by nature, even from a young age. My parents would set up easels for my sister and me to paint outdoors, and I haven’t stopped drawing since. I tend to focus on flora and fauna, making illustrations with subdued colors and intricate details. I love to create illustrations for books, and occasionally, I’ll write them, too. Often reflective of history, mythology, and folklore, my work captures an old-world feeling and a love of nature. In my spare time, you can find me in my garden or out walking my dog, Molly.

Jessica's book list on illustrated florals

Jessica Roux Why did Jessica love this book?

Dena Seiferling’s The Language of Flowers tells the story of Beatrice the bumblebee learning the language of flowers through the meadows she roams. As a fan of subdued colors, Seiferling’s illustration style drew me in, with soft lines and hidden faces within all of the featured blooms. The last two pages are an illustrated list of floral meanings, fantastic for children wanting to learn more about floriography, of which I am (very obviously) a fan!

By Dena Seiferling,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Language of Flowers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 4, 5, 6, and 7.

What is this book about?

An adopted bumblebee learns the language of flowers from her floral family in this enchanting picture book, inspired by floriography, that celebrates one of nature's most important relationships.

Deep within a magical meadow, some lonely flowers receive a very special gift: a baby bumblebee in need. The flowers name her Beatrice, they care for her and help her find her wings. And as she grows older, Beatrice learns the language of her floral family — messages of kindness and appreciation that she delivers between them. With each sweet word, the flowers bloom until the meadow becomes so big that Beatrice…


Book cover of Inciting Joy: Essays

Maddie Norris Author Of The Wet Wound: An Elegy in Essays

From my list on creative nonfiction books to gift your grieving friend.

Why am I passionate about this?

After my dad died, I didn’t know where to turn. People felt uncomfortable talking to a seventeen-year-old girl about her dead dad. They felt even more uncomfortable talking to me about it one, two, ten years later. Still, I couldn’t, can’t, stop thinking about it. I turned, then, to books. These books made and make me feel seen. They aren’t about “moving on” or “letting go” but the ways in which leaning into grief’s deep well connects us to love’s true depths. These books are honest and pure, and if you don’t know what to say to a friend who’s mourning, let these authors speak for you.

Maddie's book list on creative nonfiction books to gift your grieving friend

Maddie Norris Why did Maddie love this book?

Joy might not be the first thing you think of when considering grief, but then maybe you haven’t read Ross Gay.

Gay understands that joy exists because of grief, not as a counterbalance, but in a deeply reciprocal relationship. As his father is dying, he presses their faces together, and in his father’s freckles, he sees seeds, a garden. It is just one instance in this book where Gay recognizes that what grows from loss is love.

His book clarifies what I know to be true: that when we fall into the hole of loss, we find ourselves in a deep well of love.

By Ross Gay,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Inciting Joy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A collection of gorgeously written and timely pieces in which prize-winning poet and author Ross Gay considers the joy we incite when we care for each other, especially during life's inevitable hardships.

In "We Kin" he thinks about the garden (especially around August, when the zucchini and tomatoes come on) as a laboratory of mutual aid; in "Share Your Bucket" he explores skate-boarding's reclamation of public space; he considers the costs of masculinity in "Grief Suite"; and in "Through My Tears I Saw," he recognizes what was healed in caring for his father as he was dying.

In an era…


Book cover of Be Kind

Ellen Leventhal Author Of A Flood of Kindness

From my list on the healing power of kindness.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a teacher, writer, mother, and grandmother who sees the debilitating effects of meanness and the healing effects of kindness daily. In case that isn’t reason enough for writing A Flood of Kindness, I’m also what some call “A Floodie.” Like my character’s home flooded, so did mine. As devastating as it was, the kindness of others was overwhelming. I spent time with children whose homes also flooded. Aside from losing material things, it is easy to feel powerless. Like myself, I found that the children began their healing when they were able to give back, even in very small ways. I knew this had to be my book. 

Ellen's book list on the healing power of kindness

Ellen Leventhal Why did Ellen love this book?

One of the things I love about this book is that Miller addresses the very true idea that being kind is not always easy. Often, we tell kids to “be kind,” but we don’t tell them how. In this book, the main character tries to help her friend, Tanisha, who spills grape juice on herself. But her initial attempts aren’t successful. The main character wonders what it means to be kind and knows that she can do small kindnesses. She thinks about how small kindness can be contagious and “spill out of the school” and go all around the world. As I wonder about the power of kindness to heal, this book makes me think about how wonderful it is that we can all help in our own small way.

By Pat Zietlow Miller, Jen Hill (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Be Kind as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, 5, and 6.

What is this book about?

When Tanisha spills grape juice all over her new dress, her classmate contemplates how to make her feel better and what it means to be kind. From asking the new girl to play to standing up for someone being bullied, this moving and thoughtful story explores what a child can do to be kind, and how each act, big or small, can make a difference - or at least help a friend. With awardwinning author Pat Zietlow Miller's gentle text and Jen Hill's irresistible art, Be Kind is an unforgettable story about how two simple words can change the world.


Book cover of A Flood of Kindness

Janie Reinart Author Of When Water Makes Mud: A Story of Refugee Children

From my list on hope-filled children’s stories.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a word gatherer. I can sweet-talk a phrase here and surprise a pun there—finding the words to hold a feeling. I revel in playing with words for the sheer joy of writing. My passion is cultivating the heart-to-heart writer/reader connection. A joy-bringer, my glass is always half-full. A former Poetry Day Liaison for OCTELA (Ohio Teachers of English Language Arts), a Teacher Consultant with the National Writing Project, educator, author, and poet, I share hope-filled stories and poems.

Janie's book list on hope-filled children’s stories

Janie Reinart Why did Janie love this book?

I appreciate the gentle way Ellen Leventhal empowers children in this picture book—showing even the youngest child can do small things to help others. Charlotte, the main character, her parents, and her toy bear arrive at the shelter after evacuating their home because of flooding. Charlotte watches people at the shelter and in the community share acts of kindness with the flood victims. Even though she is sad and upset, she follows their example. When Charlotte sees a younger child crying because his teddy was lost in the flood, she gives her stuffie to the little boy. It reminds me of how attached my two-year-old grandson is to his teddy bear. These small gestures shine a light of healing and hope during a natural disaster. 

By Ellen Leventhal, Ellen Leventhal, Blythe Russo (illustrator)

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Flood of Kindness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 4, 5, 6, and 7.

What is this book about?

Perfect for all children experiencing loss or grief, A Flood of Kindness gracefully confronts difficult feelings and celebrates the healing power of kindness.

"The night the river jumped its banks, everything changed."

So begins A Flood of Kindness, a poignant picture book that addresses grief and loss and demonstrates how kindness can bring hope. Written in spare prose and told from an intimate first-person point of view, the story follows Charlotte, a young girl who watches floodwaters rise in her home and is forced to evacuate to a storm shelter with her parents. Kind people she doesn't know give her…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in kindness, refugees, and language?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about kindness, refugees, and language.

Kindness Explore 29 books about kindness
Refugees Explore 142 books about refugees
Language Explore 88 books about language