100 books like Mercy Watson to the Rescue

By Kate DiCamillo, Chris Van Dusen (illustrator),

Here are 100 books that Mercy Watson to the Rescue fans have personally recommended if you like Mercy Watson to the Rescue. 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 Stinky Cheese Man: And Other Fairly Stupid Tales

Chris Harris Author Of My Head Has a Bellyache: And More Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-Ups

From my list on kids and grown-ups will laugh, gasp, and grin at.

Why am I passionate about this?

Reading with your kid can be a delight, but it’s tough to find a book that both grown-up and child think is hysterical. I mean, I tried reading Catch-22 to my three-year-old, but for some reason the incisive social commentary just didn’t resonate with her. My kids and I both let out genuine chuckles and guffaws while reading all of these books—an experience that I treasured. These books are all giggly, snickery proof that you don’t have to dumb things down to appeal to a wide age range—a goal that I aim for myself in the children’s books and TV shows that I write. 

Chris' book list on kids and grown-ups will laugh, gasp, and grin at

Chris Harris Why did Chris love this book?

This is the book that made my kids’ heads explode (not literally—this book is perfectly safe (as far as I know)) as it helped them discover the idea of parody: taking something familiar and twisting it in a funny, unexpected way.

We rolled and lol’ed together as we read Jon’s wild, hysterical takes on old fairy tales. The non-twist twist ending to his take on the ugly duckling story is still a running joke in our family. Jon’s The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs and The Real Dada Mother Goose are also great for the same reason.

By Jon Scieszka, Lane Smith (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Stinky Cheese Man as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The entire book, with its unconventional page arrangement and eclectic, frenetic mix of text and pictures, is a spoof on the art of book design and the art of the fairy tale. The individual tales, such as The Really Ugly Duckling and Little Red Running Shorts, can be extracted for telling aloud, with great success. Another masterpiece from the team that created The True Story of the Three Little Pigs!
-Horn Book


Book cover of The Adventures of Captain Underpants

Stephanie Calmenson Author Of Our Principal Is a Frog!

From my list on funny easy-to-read chapter books in a series.

Why am I passionate about this?

I landed my dream job teaching kindergarten in a Brooklyn public school, but it soon ended thanks to citywide budget cuts.  Wanting to continue connecting with children, I made my way into children's book publishing first as an editor, later as a writer.  I've now written over 100 books including Dinner at the Panda Palace (PBS StoryTime book); May I Pet Your Dog? (Horn Book Fanfare); Dozens of Dachshunds (Scholastic Book Club selection); the Our Principal series (S&S Quix books); and The Adventures of Allie and Amy series, written with Magic School Bus author Joanna Cole. I found my new dream job teaching, entertaining, and encouraging children through books.

Stephanie's book list on funny easy-to-read chapter books in a series

Stephanie Calmenson Why did Stephanie love this book?

No list of funny, easy chapter books would be complete without Captain Underpants! This first book in the series introduces us to best buddy mischief makers George and Harold who hypnotize their principal, turning him into Captain Underpants. George and Harold are good kids. Really. I mean it. They just happen to have a mile-long "silly streak".  While not every adult approves of these books because the kids are cheeky, this is humor that gets kids reading. It's an honorable goal with exemplary execution. (Note: Author-illustrator Dav Pilkey was diagnosed as a kid with ADHD and dyslexia. At school, he was sent to sit out in the hallway daily. His success story, shared at the end of the book, is inspiring.)   

By Dav Pilkey,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Adventures of Captain Underpants as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 7, 8, and 9.

What is this book about?

Laugh out loud with the first Captain Underpants,
the #1 New York Times bestselling series
from Dav Pilkey, the creator of Dog Man!


This edition is a full-colour graphic novel



Fourth graders George Beard and Harold Hutchins are a couple of
class clowns.

The only thing they enjoy more than playing practical jokes is
creating their own comic books.

And together they've created the greatest superhero in the history
of their elementary school: Captain Underpants!

His true identity is SO secret, even HE doesn't know who he is!



The critics are CRAZY about UNDERPANTS!

"Irresistible." - Entertainment Weekly

"Call Pilkey...…


Book cover of Pizza and Taco: Best Party Ever!

Stephanie Calmenson Author Of Our Principal Is a Frog!

From my list on funny easy-to-read chapter books in a series.

Why am I passionate about this?

I landed my dream job teaching kindergarten in a Brooklyn public school, but it soon ended thanks to citywide budget cuts.  Wanting to continue connecting with children, I made my way into children's book publishing first as an editor, later as a writer.  I've now written over 100 books including Dinner at the Panda Palace (PBS StoryTime book); May I Pet Your Dog? (Horn Book Fanfare); Dozens of Dachshunds (Scholastic Book Club selection); the Our Principal series (S&S Quix books); and The Adventures of Allie and Amy series, written with Magic School Bus author Joanna Cole. I found my new dream job teaching, entertaining, and encouraging children through books.

Stephanie's book list on funny easy-to-read chapter books in a series

Stephanie Calmenson Why did Stephanie love this book?

Best buddies Pizza and Taco start out bored, but this book is anything boring! After several goofy ideas fail, the friends come up with a great one: throw a party! Of course, their plans go awry, including the sign mistakenly announcing a "Farty" instead of a "Party".  After reading this book, kids may not be able to look at a slice or a taco again without laughing.

By Stephen Shaskan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Pizza and Taco as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 5, 6, 7, and 8.

What is this book about?

The second in a hilarious young graphic novel series about Pizza and Taco. This time around Pizza and Taco are bored, so they decide to throw an awesome party! What could possibly go wrong?

Pizza and Taco have the oh-so-relatable problem of not knowing what to do when boredom strikes. The answer? Throw a party! They have a location, a guest list, and decorations. Everything is perfect . . . until it isn't. In fact, it's kind of a DISASTER! Ice Cream has a meltdown, and who knew Hamburger was lactose intolerant? (Who invited Cheeseburger anyway?) Well, now they know…


Terracolina: A Place to Belong

By Carla Kessler, Richard Kessler (illustrator),

Book cover of Terracolina: A Place to Belong

Carla Kessler Author Of Terracolina: A Place to Belong

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

As a child, one of my favorite places was in the top branches of a tree. From up there I could watch the world pass by, remaining invisible. I could make up stories about the world below and no one would challenge me. The second best place for me was inside the story of a book, the kind that took you to magical places where children always found a way to win the day. I knew when I “grew up” I would write one of those empowering books. I became a middle school teacher and have since read many wonderful books for this age. Enjoy my list of favorites.  

Carla's book list on where kids who believe in nature make a difference

What is my book about?

Where do you turn when the only adult who gets you, your grandpa, is gone, and the world seems to be in self-destruct mode?

On his 12th birthday, Thomas runs away to the forest he used to visit with Grandpa. It is dying. Will saving it from a deadly parasite bring him closer to Grandpa or make his world safer? Before he can find out, he is enticed into a magical world under an attack of a different kind.

Welcomed by a garden of talking plants, mind-reading creatures, tree-climbing, nature-loving beings, Thomas conquers the stinging, prickly hedge that guards the portal to this alternate world. At last, a place where he fits in. A place that needs him. But what about his and Grandpa’s forest?

“…a magical book...” John Perkins, New York Times best-selling author

Book cover of Geeger the Robot to the Rescue

Stephanie Calmenson Author Of Our Principal Is a Frog!

From my list on funny easy-to-read chapter books in a series.

Why am I passionate about this?

I landed my dream job teaching kindergarten in a Brooklyn public school, but it soon ended thanks to citywide budget cuts.  Wanting to continue connecting with children, I made my way into children's book publishing first as an editor, later as a writer.  I've now written over 100 books including Dinner at the Panda Palace (PBS StoryTime book); May I Pet Your Dog? (Horn Book Fanfare); Dozens of Dachshunds (Scholastic Book Club selection); the Our Principal series (S&S Quix books); and The Adventures of Allie and Amy series, written with Magic School Bus author Joanna Cole. I found my new dream job teaching, entertaining, and encouraging children through books.

Stephanie's book list on funny easy-to-read chapter books in a series

Stephanie Calmenson Why did Stephanie love this book?

"Greee-TINGS BEST FRIEND IN THE MILK- eee waaay," says Geeger the Robot. Greetings, Geeger! When Geeger's efforts to cheer his friend Tillie fail, he computes information offered by their teacher to find the best way to help. With Geeger by her side, it's hard for Tillie—or any reader—to be down in the dumps for long. Jarrett Lerner's book is filled with heart and humor and, happily, this book is part of a series. 

By Jarrett Lerner, Serge Seidlitz (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Geeger the Robot to the Rescue as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 5, 6, 7, and 8.

What is this book about?

For fans of the Bots books comes the adventures of Geeger, a robot whose best friend needs his help in the third story in a fun-to-read Aladdin QUIX chapter book series that’s perfect for emerging readers!

Geeger’s best friend, Tillie, is having a bad day and he wants to cheer her up. But sharing snacks and jokes aren’t working. How will Geeger make Tillie smile again?


Book cover of Bad Kitty: Puppy's Big Day

Stephanie Calmenson Author Of Our Principal Is a Frog!

From my list on funny easy-to-read chapter books in a series.

Why am I passionate about this?

I landed my dream job teaching kindergarten in a Brooklyn public school, but it soon ended thanks to citywide budget cuts.  Wanting to continue connecting with children, I made my way into children's book publishing first as an editor, later as a writer.  I've now written over 100 books including Dinner at the Panda Palace (PBS StoryTime book); May I Pet Your Dog? (Horn Book Fanfare); Dozens of Dachshunds (Scholastic Book Club selection); the Our Principal series (S&S Quix books); and The Adventures of Allie and Amy series, written with Magic School Bus author Joanna Cole. I found my new dream job teaching, entertaining, and encouraging children through books.

Stephanie's book list on funny easy-to-read chapter books in a series

Stephanie Calmenson Why did Stephanie love this book?

A Bad Kitty book that's (mostly) about dogs? Count me in! (I write a lot of dog books.) Kitty is in a very, very, very bad mood, and nobody knows why. The ever-slurpy Puppy gives Kitty a big sloppy kiss, which turns out to be a big mistake! Uncle Murray is called in to get Puppy out of the chaos and somehow (you'll have to read the book for the details), Puppy lands in an animal shelter. Laughs, information about dogs and shelters, and a smart surprise ending make this book a great lead-in to the enormously popular Bad Kitty series. (Full disclosure: The word "lousy" is used once. Hopefully that won't dissuade any grown-up from sharing this reader-enticing book.)

By Nick Bruel,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Bad Kitty as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 7, 8, 9, and 10.

What is this book about?

Bad Kitty's in a bad mood . . . a very bad mood, and Puppy is not helping.

Enter Uncle Murray, who's tasked with taking care of Puppy for the day, but that's when the trouble begins. When they go on a walk through the park, Uncle Murray almost gets himself arrested while Puppy ends up in the pound, where he meets some very peculiar new pals.


Book cover of Arm in Arm: A Collection of Connections, Endless Tales, Reiterations, and Other Echolalia

Chris Harris Author Of My Head Has a Bellyache: And More Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-Ups

From my list on kids and grown-ups will laugh, gasp, and grin at.

Why am I passionate about this?

Reading with your kid can be a delight, but it’s tough to find a book that both grown-up and child think is hysterical. I mean, I tried reading Catch-22 to my three-year-old, but for some reason the incisive social commentary just didn’t resonate with her. My kids and I both let out genuine chuckles and guffaws while reading all of these books—an experience that I treasured. These books are all giggly, snickery proof that you don’t have to dumb things down to appeal to a wide age range—a goal that I aim for myself in the children’s books and TV shows that I write. 

Chris' book list on kids and grown-ups will laugh, gasp, and grin at

Chris Harris Why did Chris love this book?

Oh, wow, this book is like a giant playground for the English language.

Every page is overloaded with jokes that literally go on forever, stories that end up right back where they started, puns and illusions, and poetic pretzel-knots, all illustrated with wild line-drawings and hippie-trippy 1960s colors.

I spent hours getting lost in this book as a child, and my kids loved it just as much as we giggled at the pages together.

By Remy Charlip,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Arm in Arm 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?

A New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book of the Year.


In Arm in Arm, Remy Charlip, the great children’s book author and illustrator,  is at his most playful, his zaniest, funniest, and cleverest.   He rewrites the rules of riddles, tongue twisters, puns, and performance-based play, or rather, throws all rules out the window.  Some pages require turning the book completely around, 360 degrees. A magnifying glass may also be useful. It is a book for kids of all ages.


Book cover of The Great Escape: Or, the Sewer Story

Chris Harris Author Of My Head Has a Bellyache: And More Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-Ups

From my list on kids and grown-ups will laugh, gasp, and grin at.

Why am I passionate about this?

Reading with your kid can be a delight, but it’s tough to find a book that both grown-up and child think is hysterical. I mean, I tried reading Catch-22 to my three-year-old, but for some reason the incisive social commentary just didn’t resonate with her. My kids and I both let out genuine chuckles and guffaws while reading all of these books—an experience that I treasured. These books are all giggly, snickery proof that you don’t have to dumb things down to appeal to a wide age range—a goal that I aim for myself in the children’s books and TV shows that I write. 

Chris' book list on kids and grown-ups will laugh, gasp, and grin at

Chris Harris Why did Chris love this book?

The silly, rollicking picture-book saga of how all the alligators in the sewers of New York (remember that urban legend?) got tired of their plight and banded together to escape to sunny Florida. It’s as funny as it sounds, and a great child’s introduction to the heist/escape genre of stories.

Best of all, every page is packed with funny bits and pieces of dialogue from alligators, humans, and alligators-pretending-to-be-humans. I never encountered this growing up, but we got a copy as a gift since my son and one of the alligators share a name (why-oh-why did I name my son Tick-Tock? (just kidding—it’s Silas)).

Get all your different voices ready—you’ll need them for reading this one aloud. Roald Dahl’s The Enormous Crocodile is another great crocodilian tale for all ages.

By Peter Lippman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Great Escape as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Book cover of Giraffes? Giraffes!

Chris Harris Author Of My Head Has a Bellyache: And More Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-Ups

From my list on kids and grown-ups will laugh, gasp, and grin at.

Why am I passionate about this?

Reading with your kid can be a delight, but it’s tough to find a book that both grown-up and child think is hysterical. I mean, I tried reading Catch-22 to my three-year-old, but for some reason the incisive social commentary just didn’t resonate with her. My kids and I both let out genuine chuckles and guffaws while reading all of these books—an experience that I treasured. These books are all giggly, snickery proof that you don’t have to dumb things down to appeal to a wide age range—a goal that I aim for myself in the children’s books and TV shows that I write. 

Chris' book list on kids and grown-ups will laugh, gasp, and grin at

Chris Harris Why did Chris love this book?

This book (along with the entire Haggis-on-Whey series) is one of the most remarkably twisted works of literature I know of.

On first glance, it seems to be a dry, conventional grade-school picture book about, yes, giraffes. And yet, as one reads through its content, at some point one will be struck by the realization: none of this is true!

Did giraffes really first come to Earth on a conveyor belt from Neptune? Are the legs of giraffes actually “filled with various types of fruit juice”? No! As far as I’m aware!

I waited until my kids could read on their own before giving them this book. In each case they spent a while reading through it with confused expressions, unable to reconcile the seemingly authoritative text with plain common sense…until they realized that the entire book is one giant prank and burst out laughing.

After that, we read together,…

By Doris Haggis-On-Whey, Benny Haggis-on-Whey,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Giraffes? Giraffes! as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 5, and 6.

What is this book about?

For many years the scientific and educational communities have wondered and worried about the possibility that semi-sane scholar-pretenders would find the means to publish a series of reference books aimed at children but filled with ludicrous misinformation. These books would be distributed through respectable channels and would inevitably find their ways into the hands and households of well-meaning families, who would go to them for facts but instead find bizarre untruths. The books would look normal enough, but would read as if written by people who have eaten too many lead-based paint chips. Giraffes? Giraffes! is the first in a…


Book cover of Rufus Goes to Sea

Charlotte Gunnufson Author Of Prince and Pirate

From my list on perfectly piratey storytimes.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m the author of funny-bone tickling and heartwarming picture books, Halloween Hustle and Prince and Pirate. My newest book, Dream Submarine, is a lyrical bedtime story that blends fiction and nonfiction and invites young readers on a journey through the world's oceans (Candlewick, 2024). Language Arts teacher turned writer, I'm passionate about literacy and love visiting schools and libraries to connect with my favorite people—kids!  My books and all the perfectly piratey tales on this list are best when read aloud!

Charlotte's book list on perfectly piratey storytimes

Charlotte Gunnufson Why did Charlotte love this book?

“Arrrh! No pigs on pirate ships!” growls Captain Wibblyshins when Rufus, a perky little pig with a backpack full of books, tries to board the Scurvy Dog. If you enjoy puns and fun-to-say phrases (like “pigs play on the poop deck” and “picnic in the crow’s nest”) as much as I do, you’re going to enjoy this book. Kids of all ages will root for Rufus as he creatively convinces everyone that he’s an excellent addition to the crew. Ink and watercolor illustrations are entertaining and endearing.

By Kim T. Griswell, Valeri Gorbachev (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rufus Goes to Sea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Ahoy-Pirate Pig on board! What does a book-loving pig like Rufus do when school's out for summer? He turns to his favourite stories for inspiration, of course! And before long, he's dreaming of days filled with adventure and nights under blankets of stars. It's the pirate life for him, matey. But Captain Wibblyshins says: "no pigs on pirate ships!" After all, pigs get tangled in the rat lines, they picnic in the crow's nest, and worst of all, they even wipe their chins with the Jolly Roger. Can Rufus convince the Captain that he's no landlubber swine? And could his…


Book cover of Ballet Lesson: Peppa Pig

Katharine Holabird Author Of Angelina Ballerina

From my list on inspiring little dancers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve never forgotten the thrill of my first ballet! My grandmother and I went to see The Nutcracker when I was five, and that first ballet experience inspired a lifelong love of dance. As a child, I adored dressing up and twirling around the house with my sisters, and I went on to study dance along with English Literature in college. Years later when my own daughters adored dressing up in pink tutus, I started writing about a determined little mouse who loves to dance, and so Angelina Ballerina was born. Children naturally love music and dance, and I hope the picture books I’ve chosen will inspire you and your family with the magic of dance!

Katharine's book list on inspiring little dancers

Katharine Holabird Why did Katharine love this book?

Peppa is an adorable little pink pig, and the Peppa Pig books are full of family fun and laughter. In this 8x8 storybook, slightly older children will delight in Peppa’s very first ballet lesson as she learns some graceful dance steps with all her friends. When Peppa comes home and decides to teach her parents how to do ballet she gets quite a surprise! Wonderful humor and colorful, lively illustrations contribute to all the dancing fun.

By Elizabeth Schaefer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ballet Lesson 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?

A ballet-themed 8x8 storybook featuring Peppa -- a lovable, slightly bossy little piggy! Includes a poster of Peppa and friends!

Peppa Pig goes to her very first ballet lesson where she learns a graceful dance routine. But when Peppa decides to teach Mummy Pig and Daddy Pig how to dance, too, she finds out they might just have some dance moves of their own! Includes a poster of Peppa and friends!

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