100 books like Where the Wild Things Are

By Maurice Sendak,

Here are 100 books that Where the Wild Things Are fans have personally recommended if you like Where the Wild Things Are. 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 Wolf Hall

Charlotte Gray Author Of Passionate Mothers, Powerful Sons: The Lives of Jennie Jerome Churchill and Sara Delano Roosevelt

From my list on history books by women.

Why am I passionate about this?

I recall my younger self looking at the reading lists on Oxford University history courses, and asking, “Where are all the women?” I have always wanted to know what it was like to be there, in any century up to the present. How did families form and pass on their values, what did people wear and eat, when (and if) children learned to read, and what were people’s daily routines? Political, military, and economic history is important, but I have flourished in the social history trenches. I discovered women writers and historians have more acute antennae for the details I wanted, even when writing about wars and dynasties.

Charlotte's book list on history books by women

Charlotte Gray Why did Charlotte love this book?

Yes, I know this is a novel, but Mantel’s historical research is impeccable and no one has done more to bring to light the shadowy, intrigue-filled court of Henry VIII. Mantel explores the intersection of political power and personal ambition as she traces the career of Thomas Cromwell, a rags-to-riches courtier.

I could almost taste the food, smell the decay, and touch the damp walls of the buildings. She took me deep into the consciousness of the unlikeable yet sympathetic and lonely main character, as he serves his monarch and defeats his enemies.

The drama is gripping.

By Hilary Mantel,

Why should I read it?

19 authors picked Wolf Hall as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Winner of the Man Booker Prize Shortlisted for the the Orange Prize Shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award

`Dizzyingly, dazzlingly good' Daily Mail

'Our most brilliant English writer' Guardian

England, the 1520s. Henry VIII is on the throne, but has no heir. Cardinal Wolsey is his chief advisor, charged with securing the divorce the pope refuses to grant. Into this atmosphere of distrust and need comes Thomas Cromwell, first as Wolsey's clerk, and later his successor.

Cromwell is a wholly original man: the son of a brutal blacksmith, a political genius, a briber, a charmer, a bully, a man with…


Book cover of England's Dreaming: Anarchy, Sex Pistols, Punk Rock, and Beyond

Geoff Turner Author Of Archie's Mirror

From my list on magic, heroes, and rock ‘n’ roll.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a writer of children’s books, I’ve always been fascinated – not merely by the narrative, characters, and plot that form a story – but how ideas themselves spring to life and cross-pollinate to form some kind of creative endeavor, whether that’s a song, a poem, a book or anything else that provokes an emotional response. Rather than shying away from the question: "Where do you get your ideas?" I like to embrace it and search for answers myself. These books all set contexts through which the nature of imagination and ideas are explored alongside the tales they tell, and they remain an influence on the ideas I have, and the words I write.

Geoff's book list on magic, heroes, and rock ‘n’ roll

Geoff Turner Why did Geoff love this book?

The birth of punk rock was never really about the music – or at least not just about the music – and England’s Dreaming sets the context for probably the most volatile genre to assault the senses. Jon Savage’s book explores the historical and social setting that led to this – albeit brief – explosion in youth culture. He links together the birth of anarchism with the Situationist art movement alongside the eventual do-it-yourself attitude of punk fashion and music to create a narrative that’s both fascinating and incredibly relevant to the world today. As the legendary contemporaneous fanzine, Sniffing Glue once put it: Here’s a guitar chord, here’s another, here’s another…now go form a band!

By Jon Savage,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked England's Dreaming as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The influence of The Sex Pistols has stretched way beyond their short, violent and notorious career - not only did they define punk, through the vision of their manager Malcolm McLaren and lead singer Johnny Rotten, but by the time of the Jubilee in 1977, they had initiated an explosion of angry music, graphics, fashion and media. This book is full of research, interviews plus a discography of The Sex Pistols that provides a historical perspective of the group. It follows the group's development over the course of a decade that began with a small shop in the King's Road…


Book cover of A Wrinkle in Time

David Mack Author Of Star Trek: Picard: Firewall

From my list on science fiction and fantasy books with a heroic female coming-of-age story.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always been an avid reader, ever since I was old enough to hold a book upright. Today, I’m a writer of science fiction, fantasy, and thrillers, with credits spanning novels, short fiction, television, comic books, and video games. I’m especially fond of heroic tales that feature female main characters, both in books and on-screen. Several of my nearly 40 novels have featured heroic female main characters, including my newest book, Star Trek: Picard: Firewall, which is a coming-of-age tale about Seven of Nine’s journey to becoming a Fenris Ranger.

David's book list on science fiction and fantasy books with a heroic female coming-of-age story

David Mack Why did David love this book?

I must have re-read this wonderful book half a dozen times in my youth. I first read it when I was in middle school. Though I had discovered science fiction and fantasy books a few years earlier, most of them had been heavy on action and light on ideas.

This was one of the first books I read that really made me think about how strange and wonderful the universe might really be and see how that might provide a context for telling profoundly moving human stories. It filled my young mind with awe and wonder, as well as a desire to tell my own stories.

By Madeleine L'Engle,

Why should I read it?

14 authors picked A Wrinkle in Time 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?

Puffin Classics: the definitive collection of timeless stories, for every child.

We can't take any credit for our talents. It's how we use them that counts.

When Charles and Meg Murry go searching through a 'wrinkle in time' for their lost father, they find themselves on an evil planet where all life is enslaved by a huge pulsating brain known as 'It'.

Meg, Charles and their friend Calvin embark on a cosmic journey helped by the funny and mysterious trio of guardian angels, Mrs Whatsit, Mrs Who and Mrs Which. Together they must find the weapon that will defeat It.…


Book cover of American Gods

Terry Madden Author Of Three Wells of the Sea

From my list on mythic fantasy novels.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been studying Celtic myth and history since I was in college and took a class on Arthurian literature. Drawing heavily from Irish and Welsh lore to build my “land beyond the veil” known as the Five Quarters, I have always been intrigued by the Celtic view of the land of the dead as a distinct world to which we go and then return, like two sides of the mirrored surface of a well. I hope you enjoy these mythic fantasy books as much as I did!

Terry's book list on mythic fantasy novels

Terry Madden Why did Terry love this book?

Gaiman doesn’t just incorporate one myth into his story; he goes for them all and brings all the gods to America.

This novel defies categorizing. I have always been interested in probing the nature of religion and humanity’s invention of gods. How did we first encounter them, and are they still relevant in today’s world? How does the nature of story itself relate to the lives of the gods?

All of these points are dealt with in this unique and entirely new introduction to some very old gods. I found it not only highly entertaining but thought-provoking.

By Neil Gaiman,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked American Gods as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Now a STARZ® Original Series – Season 3 premiere in January 2021

“Pointed, occasionally comic, often scary, consistently moving and provocative….American Gods is strewn with secrets and magical visions.”—USA Today

Newly updated and expanded with the author’s preferred text. A modern masterpiece from the multiple-award-winning master of innovative fiction, Neil Gaiman.

First published in 2001, American Gods became an instant classic, lauded for its brilliant synthesis of “mystery, satire, sex, horror, and poetic prose” (Washington Post) and as a modern phantasmagoria that “distills the essence of America” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer). It is the story of Shadow—released from prison just days after…


Book cover of Owl Babies

Angela Hodgkins Author Of Strength-based Practice with Children and Families

From my list on why working with young children is awesome.

Why am I passionate about this?

My professional background is in working with children, my career began as an NNEB nursery nurse and I did many jobs (nanny, childminder, preschool, reception class, after school club, primary school, special school, and in learning support). I then trained as a teacher of adults and went on to be a college lecturer. I am now a senior university lecturer, but my heart has always been in the early years. I am passionate about highlighting the incredible work that is going on in the early years and in schools and have a strength-based, empowering, and optimistic view, which I try to instill in my students. Working with young children is a privilege and a joy.

Angela's book list on why working with young children is awesome

Angela Hodgkins Why did Angela love this book?

This is my very favourite children’s book. I have read it hundreds of times and it still brings tears to my eyes.

It is a great book to read to children who are starting preschool, or nursery, or school. It is about 3 owl babies whose mother goes away to find food. They worry that she might not come back but of course she does. It helps children understand that their parent will come back at the end of the day.

The page where the mother owl comes back to the baby owls makes me cry every time!

By Martin Waddell, Patrick Benson (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A special 25th anniversary edition of a modern classic, Owl Babies reassures young children that Mummy will always come home.

"The perfect picture book" Guardian

A special 25th anniversary board book edition of a bestselling modern classic, Owl Babies is a comforting read for any toddler who has ever worried about mum leaving them alone, or any child starting pre-school for the very first time. Sarah, Percy and Bill the baby owls wake one night to find their mother gone. And as the darkness gathers and they perch patiently on their branch waiting for her return, oh how they worry!…


Book cover of Don't Forget to Come Back!

Naomi Danis Author Of Bye, Car

From my list on separation and belonging picture books.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m the author of picture books about feelings (I Hate Everyone), friendship (My Best Friend, Sometimes), and family (While Grandpa Napsand now, things that go (Bye, Car). I’ve also written about taking a bath and going for a walk. Wanting to be close and cared for, and at the same time, wanting to take even tentative steps toward independence is at the heart of the challenge of growing up for young children. Negotiating between the wish to belong and the wish to separate can be messy. The themes of connection, relationship, love, and ambivalence inspire much of my writing

Naomi's book list on separation and belonging picture books

Naomi Danis Why did Naomi love this book?

Mommy and Daddy are going out—without her— and the narrator of this compassionate and sweetly, smartly funny picture book doesn’t like it one bit. She keeps finding three new very important things to tell her patient parents to prevent their leaving—to no avail. The babysitter, not surprisingly, turns out to be very cool. I love the imagination, resourcefulness, and spunk of this child narrator coping with her own feelings of separation.

By Robie H. Harris, Harry Bliss (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Don't Forget to Come Back! 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?

With warmth, empathy, and a healthy dose of hilarity, Robie H. Harris and Harry Bliss capture the many emotions children feel when parents go out — and a babysitter comes in!

Guess what? The babysitter is coming!

That means:

1. Mommy and Daddy are going out
2. the feisty heroine of this book is not going out . . .
3. and she doesn’t like that one bit!

Parents, kids, and babysitters alike will relate to—and laugh at—this all-too-familiar tale, wisely and wittily penned by an expert in child development and brought wickedly to life with detailed illustrations by a…


Book cover of Night Job

Naomi Danis Author Of Bye, Car

From my list on separation and belonging picture books.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m the author of picture books about feelings (I Hate Everyone), friendship (My Best Friend, Sometimes), and family (While Grandpa Napsand now, things that go (Bye, Car). I’ve also written about taking a bath and going for a walk. Wanting to be close and cared for, and at the same time, wanting to take even tentative steps toward independence is at the heart of the challenge of growing up for young children. Negotiating between the wish to belong and the wish to separate can be messy. The themes of connection, relationship, love, and ambivalence inspire much of my writing

Naomi's book list on separation and belonging picture books

Naomi Danis Why did Naomi love this book?

While the city sleeps a small boy accompanies his dad on his night shift as a school custodian, playing ball in the gym while his dad sweeps, sharing a meal they brought with them, listening to a game on the radio as they go from classroom to classroom, reading aloud on a couch until he dozes off while his dad polishes the library. I love this story for its tender sense of togetherness and for sharing the adult world of work. The night time makes it special too.

By Karen Hesse, G. Brian Karas (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Night Job 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?

With lyrical narration and elegant, evocative artwork, Newbery Medalist Karen Hesse and illustrator G. Brian Karas share the nighttime experience of a father and child.

When the sun sets, Dad’s job as a school custodian is just beginning. What is it like to work on a Friday night while the rest of the city is asleep? There’s the smell of lilacs in the night air, the dusky highway in the moonlight, and glimpses of shy nighttime animals to make the dark magical. Shooting baskets in the half-lit gym, sweeping the stage with the game on the radio, and reading out…


Book cover of Big Red Lollipop

Naomi Danis Author Of Bye, Car

From my list on separation and belonging picture books.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m the author of picture books about feelings (I Hate Everyone), friendship (My Best Friend, Sometimes), and family (While Grandpa Napsand now, things that go (Bye, Car). I’ve also written about taking a bath and going for a walk. Wanting to be close and cared for, and at the same time, wanting to take even tentative steps toward independence is at the heart of the challenge of growing up for young children. Negotiating between the wish to belong and the wish to separate can be messy. The themes of connection, relationship, love, and ambivalence inspire much of my writing

Naomi's book list on separation and belonging picture books

Naomi Danis Why did Naomi love this book?

In a heartfelt but also comic story, the eldest of three sisters in an immigrant family comes home from school with her first-ever birthday party invitation and much to her chagrin, her mom insists she must call the classmate to ask if she can bring along her annoying “I wanna go too!” sister. It’s hard having her sister with her at the party, and even worse when they get home.  I Iove the sibling rivalry, depicted so perfectly here, and the sibling love and family solidarity that goes with it.

By Rukhsana Khan, Sophie Blackall (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Big Red Lollipop 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?

Rubina has been invited to her first birthday party, and her mother, Ami, insists that she bring her little sister along. Rubina is mortified, but she can't convince Ami that you just don't bring your younger sister to your friend's party. So both girls go, and not only does Sana demand to win every game, but after the party she steals Rubina's prized party favor, a red lollipop. What's a fed-up big sister to do?

Rukhsana Khan's clever story and Sophie Blackall's irresistible illustrations make for a powerful combination in this fresh and surprising picture book.


Book cover of Strega Nona

Rebecca Hazell Author Of The Sweeper: A Buddhist Tale

From my list on to cheer you up and get you to look around.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up in suburbia—or urban sprawl—with fairytales and children’s nonfiction series like Lands and Peoples. My passion for reading (and history and art museums) nurtured my sense of wonder and awe at the richness of the world. I was inspired to write nonfiction about heroic people by my own children, whose social studies education lacked dazzle and examples of heroism. I had already been creating educational materials for schools, but I wanted to inspire their wonder about and appreciation of the world. My kids are grown, but I’m still writing for young readers. An avid world traveler and historian, I've always aspired to bring other people, places, cultures, and times to life.

Rebecca's book list on to cheer you up and get you to look around

Rebecca Hazell Why did Rebecca love this book?

With simple, colorful illustrations and a humorous plot featuring Grandmother Witch’s magical pasta pot that requires more than the right words to control it, this book delights me still.

The story seems to be about learning to listen properly. It’s also about eavesdropping, bragging, and above all, the consequences of failing to follow directions. But its charm to me is its sympathy for naughty Big Anthony, who is, after all, just like everyone’s inner child.

By Tomie dePaola,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

When Strega Nona leaves him alone with her magic pasta pot, Big Anthony is determined to show the townspeople how it works in this classic Caldecott Honor book from Tomie dePaola.

Strega Nona-"Grandma Witch"-is the source for potions, cures, magic, and comfort in her Calabrian town. Her magical everfull pasta pot is especially intriguing to hungry Big Anthony. He is supposed to look after her house and tend her garden but one day, when she goes over the mountain to visit Strega Amelia, Big Anthony recites the magic verse over the pasta pot, with disastrous results.

In this retelling of…


Book cover of The Rainbow Fish

Tina Koopersmith Author Of What Am I?

From my list on young children to build self compassion.

Why am I passionate about this?

Children feel all their emotions, but I learned to suppress many emotions to avoid criticism. The youngest, I learned to not trust my intuition. I was taught that the mind was the path to success. In my chosen medical profession, physicians use intellect to heal bodies. The interconnection of thoughts, emotions, energy as well as interconnections between people and the environment are ignored. This separation from all of me was sapping me of the joy of living a full life. During my self healing integration journey: I uncovered limiting beliefs, reconnected with my heart, and dove deep into the source of my pleasure. Bringing this awareness to light should be healing.

Tina's book list on young children to build self compassion

Tina Koopersmith Why did Tina love this book?

Children love being unique and different. We live in a culture that celebrates beauty and shiny, glittery wealth and even “having” a lot.

The beautiful rainbow fish was indeed beautiful on the outside but this did not endear the fish to her peers. This book teaches that in gratitude and service to others, we show our love.

When we show our heart and share from the heart, this is a sign of true beauty, and this helps us better connect with others. And in this way–when we give love, we feel love. 

By Marcus Pfister,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The award-winning book about a beautiful fish who finds friendship and happiness when he learns to share is now available in a board book edition for the youngest child.


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