92 books like Vampenguin

By Lucy Ruth Cummins,

Here are 92 books that Vampenguin fans have personally recommended if you like Vampenguin. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Book cover of This Is Your Brain on Stereotypes: How Science Is Tackling Unconscious Bias

Joyce Grant Author Of Can You Believe It? How to Spot Fake News and Find the Facts

From my list on to improve kids’ critical thinking.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a journalist and a social media prof. I talk to thousands of kids every year about what they read on the Internet. And frankly, they’re confused—as we all are—about what’s true online and what isn’t. To spot misinformation, kids have to become better critical thinkers. That’s why I wrote Can You Believe It? and it’s why I’m recommending these great books. It’s also helpful to know what credible journalism looks like. My TeachingKidsNews.com (TKN) is a kid-friendly news source that kids and teachers can trust. In addition to publishing TKN, I’ve authored six children’s books and I have a Master’s degree in Creative and Critical Writing. 

Joyce's book list on to improve kids’ critical thinking

Joyce Grant Why did Joyce love this book?

This is Your Brain on Stereotypes takes a deep dive into not just our conscious prejudices but our unconscious biases as well as systemic bias and stereotypes.

It looks not only at how to recognize our biases, but also how to change them and what it will take to change society’s systemic racism. It uses research, statistics, and anecdotes and it may make us feel uncomfortable at times. That uncomfortable feeling is one of discovery—and it’s the first step toward making meaningful change through critical analysis.

By Tanya Lloyd Kyi, Drew Shannon (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked This Is Your Brain on Stereotypes as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 11, 12, 13, and 14.

What is this book about?

An essential overview of the science behind stereotypes: from why our brains form them to how recognizing them can help us be less biased. From the time we're babies, our brains constantly sort and label the world around us --- a skill that's crucial for our survival. But, as adolescents are all too aware, there's a tremendous downside: when we do this to groups of people it can cause great harm. Here's a comprehensive introduction to the science behind stereotypes that will help young people make sense of why we classify people, and how we can change our thinking. It…


Book cover of Bad Dog

Judy Lea Author Of Please Don't Go in the Dryer!

From my list on laugh out loud children’s books about pets.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a semi-retired music teacher and grandmother of two. When my kids were little, we would devour books like they were delicious candy, reading our favourites over and over again. I still love reading out loud, using various inflections, accents, and voices for the different characters. I’ve read hundreds of children’s books and the ones I enjoy most have a great message, are fun to read out loud, and also make me laugh. And they must have beautiful, colourful illustrations! My first book is a spoken word piece from my WCMA-nominated CD, Too Much Work To Do. It’s been asking me to dream it into a book for years! 

Judy's book list on laugh out loud children’s books about pets

Judy Lea Why did Judy love this book?

One of the best things about this book is the fabulous illustrations! Bold, bright, and very silly, they totally capture the essence of this very funny story about a little girl who desperately wants a dog. She is overjoyed with the ‘dog’ she gets for her birthday except, he won’t do anything dogs are supposed to do! He won’t come when he’s called, won’t go for walks, doesn’t like other dogs, etc. However, he is very good at climbing trees, (but won’t come down), likes to play in the fish water…doesn’t bark at the mailman, doesn’t have accidents on the floor… maybe that’s because this dog is actually a…cat

I definitely understand why this book is a five-time award winner!

By Mike Boldt,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Bad Dog as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?



The differences between cats and dogs have never been funnier! In this hilarious new story from the illustrator of I Don't Want to Be a Frog, a little girl really, really wants a dog . . . but gets a cat instead!

"Look what I got for my birthday! A pet dog!" says a little girl holding a . . . cat? Rocky doesn't listen or obey like all the other dogs. (Because Rocky is a cat.) And Rocky hates her leash and doesn't seem to like other dogs. (Probably because Rocky is a cat.) And rather than play fetch,…


Book cover of Facts vs. Opinions vs. Robots

Linda Zajac Author Of Robo-Motion: Robots That Move Like Animals

From my list on robots for little kids with big-tech taste.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m fascinated by robots. As a former computer programmer, systems analyst, and consultant, I’ve had an interest in technology since my first programming class in high school. I’ve been to robotics labs in Boston, Massachusetts, and Lausanne, Switzerland. My husband is a mechanical/software engineer, so STEM is a big part of our lives. In addition to Robo-Motion, I’m the author of a number of Minecraft books with STEM and coding sidebars. I’ve also published many magazine articles, one of which was the inspiration for this book. I wrote about the CRAM cockroach robot for the March 2017 issue of MUSE.

Linda's book list on robots for little kids with big-tech taste

Linda Zajac Why did Linda love this book?

I like a challenge, so I was drawn to how this concept picture book tackles a challenging topic, making it fun and accessible. While colorful robots dance and bicker, the text asks readers to evaluate statements to determine if they’re facts or opinions. Readers learn to question information and to respect the opinions of others, skills many adults haven’t mastered. The best thing about this book is that it fosters critical thinking.

By Michael Rex,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Facts vs. Opinions vs. Robots 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?

Do you know the difference between a fact and an opinion? It can be a hard thing to understand. Some things are facts - like the number of robots in this book. Other things are opinions - like which robot would make the best friend, or which robot dances best. And sometimes to tell the difference between a fact and an opinion, you need to wait to get more information - that's because facts can be proven true or false, and opinions are things you feel and believe - but that you can't prove.

Mike Rex introduces young readers to…


Book cover of Forces of Nature: Two Truths and a Lie

Joyce Grant Author Of Can You Believe It? How to Spot Fake News and Find the Facts

From my list on to improve kids’ critical thinking.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a journalist and a social media prof. I talk to thousands of kids every year about what they read on the Internet. And frankly, they’re confused—as we all are—about what’s true online and what isn’t. To spot misinformation, kids have to become better critical thinkers. That’s why I wrote Can You Believe It? and it’s why I’m recommending these great books. It’s also helpful to know what credible journalism looks like. My TeachingKidsNews.com (TKN) is a kid-friendly news source that kids and teachers can trust. In addition to publishing TKN, I’ve authored six children’s books and I have a Master’s degree in Creative and Critical Writing. 

Joyce's book list on to improve kids’ critical thinking

Joyce Grant Why did Joyce love this book?

This series is critical thinking on steroids. The reader is given three fact-filled stories and has to figure out which one isn’t true. Is there really a pit in Turkmenistan that has been burning for 40 years? Are there radioactive boars in Japan? Did Edgar Allan Poe carry his dead wife’s remains around in a snuffbox? The reader has to find facts and think critically to figure them out. There are three books in the series each with 27 stories, nine of which aren’t true. I recommend younger readers have an adult handy because the book is a bit more complicated to navigate than, say, a novel. End matter provides additional information including websites to help the reader analyze each article. Oh, and the three facts? Yes, yep and heck no.

By Ammi-Joan Paquette, Laurie Ann Thompson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Forces of Nature as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

Crazy-but-true stories about the natural world make this acclaimed nonfiction series perfect for fans of curiosities and wonders—and anyone looking to explore ways to separate fact from fiction. This nonfiction chapter book is an excellent choice to share during homeschooling, in particular for children ages 7 to 9 who are reading independently. It’

Did you know that too many fidget spinners spinning in the same direction could have an adverse effect on Earth’s gravitational field? Or that the remains of a deceased loved one can be turned into a diamond? Or that the loudest known sound in history was made…


Book cover of Fierce Kingdom

Amy Beashel Author Of Spilt Milk

From my list on modern motherhood.

Why am I passionate about this?

I had a very distinct vision of what kind of mother I would be: patient, kind, and creative. And I can be all of these things, but so too can I be frustrated, furious, and exhausted beyond belief. This contradictory experience of motherhood was what I wanted to explore in Spilt Milk and is the motherhood exposed in these five books which, while very different in form, share a willingness to acknowledge the darker and less curated aspects of a relationship that can be as stifling as it is wonderful.  

Amy's book list on modern motherhood

Amy Beashel Why did Amy love this book?

A shooter in a zoo might not sound like the premise for an exploration of motherhood, but this brilliantly paced thriller is just that. On a day trip to the zoo with her four-year-old son, Joan must flee from a gunman, a task made all the more complicated by having to simultaneously negotiate the quotidian questions and tasks of parenting.

A hungry child, or one who needs the toilet, can be challenging at the best of times, let alone while hiding in an empty animal enclosure trying to avoid imminent death! Ultimately, the primary role of any parent is to keep their child alive. Fierce Kingdom puts this ordinary occupation in extraordinary circumstances, and the result is utterly compelling. 

By Gin Phillips,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Fierce Kingdom as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the New York Times Book Review's Best Crime Novels of 2017

"Warning: you'll finish this in one sitting." -TheSkimm

"Expertly made thriller . . . clever and irresistible." -The New York Times

An electrifying novel about the primal and unyielding bond between a mother and her son, and the lengths she'll go to protect him.

The zoo is nearly empty as Joan and her four-year-old son soak up the last few moments of playtime. They are happy, and the day has been close to perfect. But what Joan sees as she hustles her son toward the exit gate…


Book cover of An Elephant in the Garden: Inspired by a True Story

Uma Krishnaswami Author Of The Problem with Being Slightly Heroic

From my list on middle grade featuring elephants.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was born and grew up in India and I’ve always been fascinated by elephants. When I wrote The Problem with Being Slightly Heroic, it felt natural to have Mini, the elephant, become part of its world. She’s not the main character, yet her presence raises questions about the place of these amazing animals in our world and in our hearts. I picked five titles in which elephants are secondary characters, raising similar questions for readers about who these extraordinary creatures are and why we should care. Curiously, I couldn’t find a single novel featuring African elephants. 

Uma's book list on middle grade featuring elephants

Uma Krishnaswami Why did Uma love this book?

I love historical fiction, and I love stories within stories and this novel is both! It’s set at the end of World War II, just after the Allied bombing of Dresden. We’re following 16-year-old Elizabeth, her Mutti, her little brother Karli, and a downed Swiss-Canadian airman as they flee to safety near Heidelberg in the company of—yes, really—an elephant! A story of survival, of endurance, of building lives. The human relationships, in a dark and dangerous time, are brightened by the unexpected presence of one remarkable animal. 

By Michael Morpurgo,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked An Elephant in the Garden as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

A thrilling and moving new novel about an extraordinary animal caught up in a very human war, for anyone who loved The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips or The Butterfly Lion...

Dresden, 1945. Elizabeth and Karli's mother works at the zoo, where her favourite animal is a young elephant named Marlene. Then the zoo director tells her that the dangerous animals - including the elephants - must be shot before the town is bombed. Unable to give Marlene up, their mother moves her into the back garden to save her... and then the bombs start to fall.

Their home destroyed,…


Book cover of Silly Doggy!

Julie Fulton Author Of Bears Don't Eat Egg Sandwiches

From my list on the craziest picture books for children.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up on a diet of crazy stories by Edward Lear, Dr. Seuss, and Hillaire Belloc amongst others. They instilled in me a lifelong love of books and reading. Dad created whacky stories for me every bedtime too. Little wonder I now write my own zany tales. Greedy Mrs. MacCready and the rest of the Ever So series, plus Bears Don’t Eat Egg Sandwiches, are direct descendants of the stories I loved as a child! Experience as a classroom teacher gave me many insights into the minds of young children. I love going back into schools to read my books to a new audience. Hope you enjoy them too!

Julie's book list on the craziest picture books for children

Julie Fulton Why did Julie love this book?

When Lily looks out of her bedroom window she gets the best surprise – a doggy! But this is no ordinary doggy. There’s been an escape from the zoo… Readers know from the outset Lily’s new pet is really a bear. Hear them shout ‘but he’s not a dog!’

Even Lily notices he’s quite big ‘for a dog’, but insists on taking him for a walk and teaching him tricks, none of which he is any good at. Unfortunately, the zookeeper recognises his bear from the ‘lost doggy’ poster Lily’s mum makes her display. She must give him back.

A beautifully illustrated story, full of optimism and a little girl’s irrepressibly wonderful outlook on life. It will have you laughing all the way from beginning to the cheerful final twist.

By Adam Stower,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Silly Doggy! 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?

Charming, funny, beautifully illustrated this is an hilarious picture book that will resonate with dog lovers, both adults and children, as they read it together. It is full of visual jokes and it comes complete with a fold-out poster When Lily looks out of her bedroom window, she gets the best surprise ever - a doggy! But this is no normal doggy, this is actually an escaped bear. Lily's adventure with doggy is told through a poster Lily has made, advertising that she's found a lost dog. Sadly a zookeeper comes to collect Doggy. But the next day, Lily has…


Book cover of The View at the Zoo

Nancy Raines Day Author Of Applesauce Is Fun to Wear

From my list on sharing laughs with toddlers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I believe laughing together is a big part of the glue that bonds people together. Humor has gotten me through my toughest times—and given me much joy in the good times. Laughing over my books with one or both of my toddler grandsons will always be cherished memories for me. Likewise, I love hearing about moments of connection for other readers bonding over Applesauce Is Fun to Wear, Baby’s Opposites, Baby’s Firsts, and Pirate Jack Gets Dressed. Picture books should appeal to the ear as well as the eye. Coming from a family of musicians, I’m partial to rhyme, as you might guess from most of my picks here.

Nancy's book list on sharing laughs with toddlers

Nancy Raines Day Why did Nancy love this book?

What's not to love about the bouncy, perfect rhyme and zany illustrations of a day at the zoo packed with action and humorous touches? But this board book has more subtle layers, too. While the first few spreads show the zookeeper getting animals ready for opening, the viewpoint shifts to the animal's thoughts on the humans:

My, what silly things they do,/ all these creatures at the zoo.

The following pages detail actions common to people and zoo animals like dancing feet, carrying babies, and shrieking. I've often thought that if we humans could keep in mind that we’re animals, too, we’d be better at sharing the planet with them. This simple and simply hilarious book does that in a way humans of all ages can appreciate.

By Kathleen Long Bostrom, Guy Francis (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The View at the Zoo 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?

In this humorous twist on a visit to the zoo, just who has the more interesting view? As morning dawns, the zookeeper makes his rounds, exhorting the animals to wake up, comb their hair, and stand up straight. Soon their human visitors arrive, and the observations begin to flow: My, what silly things they do, all these creatures at the zoo. Walking on all kinds of feet, dancing to an inner beat. Babies riding on their backs, on their bellies, snug in sacks. Hear the silly sounds they speak, as they howl and squawk and shriek! But just who is…


Book cover of The Not-So-Great Zoo Swap Shop

Dawn Doig Author Of Hair Peace

From my list on inspire children to be happy with who they are.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was born in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, but inherited ‘travelling DNA’ from my sailor father which has led to a life of work and travel around the globe. In addition to being an audiologist and teacher, I am also the author (and sometimes illustrator) of 15 children’s picture books. Many of my books have been inspired by the special children I have had the privilege to work with as both an audiologist and teacher. My books are on a variety of topics including childhood hearing loss, dysgraphia and writing challenges, bullying and forgiveness, learning English as an additional language, and positive self-image. Some of my books are written to evoke giggles and belly laughs. 

Dawn's book list on inspire children to be happy with who they are

Dawn Doig Why did Dawn love this book?

A wonderful book that celebrates the beauty of diversity. Our world is full of people (and animals!) who do not look the same whether it be the colour of their skin, the shape of their eyes, or the length of their limbs. These people bring with them a vast range of talents, abilities, and creativity. How boring our world would be if everyone looked the same and could do all the same things! The illustrator did a fantastic job bringing this story to life and the author did a fabulous job with the rhyming text. A lovely book that is sure to be enjoyed by anyone who ventures to open the pages.

By Cora Lydon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Not-So-Great Zoo Swap Shop as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Zebra's desperate to blend in like a chameleon. Penguin yearns for a cheetah's speed. When the chance to swap their key traits and characteristics arises will these zoo animals learn they're perfect just as they are?

When tiger announces the swap shop has arrived the animals rush to have their wishes granted. However, they soon find out that what they desire comes with unexpected consequences. Will zebra ever get his stripes back? And can warthog convince the animals that not every wish needs to come true?

Sometimes we should be careful what we wish for and learn to love ourselves.…


Book cover of Hungry Roscoe

Timothy Kleyn Author Of Grilled Cheese? Yes, Please!

From my list on food-centered picture books.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up, my family was a meat and potatoes family. The food was good but it was never really about the food. It was about eating together. When I got older, I ventured beyond the world of meat and potatoes, made more friends to eat with, and learned more and more to enjoy the little things in life. My two books are about food but also not really. They're community books. Family books. Adventure books. Same thing with the 5 books on my list. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!

Timothy's book list on food-centered picture books

Timothy Kleyn Why did Timothy love this book?

Hungry Roscoe is hilarious. I love it. I always feel that humor is so important in picture books, and funny books were always my favorite as a young chap.

It has such a fun story, and I can imagine that it was a blast to illustrate. The pictures really push the humor. I had so much fun reading it, and I kept thinking, "Boy, this is great. I hope they stick the landing." And they really did! I love the ending. It's a really good book.

By David J. Plant,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hungry Roscoe 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?

Roscoe is a hungry raccoon fed up with eating rotten junk out of the bins. What he wouldn't give for a lovely bit of fish or some fresh, juicy fruit -and where better to find food than at the zoo! An excellent idea, except for the grumpy zookeeper who's intent on keeping Roscoe OUT. But Roscoe's come up with a plan to disguise himself as a zoo animal. . . . What could go wrong?


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in zoos, vampires, and penguins?

11,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about zoos, vampires, and penguins.

Zoos Explore 20 books about zoos
Vampires Explore 280 books about vampires
Penguins Explore 21 books about penguins