Many times, adults forget certain stories. Those that once, as children, we devoured at the door of our grandparents’ house during the summers or we listened to at night before going to sleep. Luckily, the best children’s and youth books from our childhood continue to contain simple but powerful lessons to pass on to the little ones or even to ourselves again.

Best children’s and youth books

The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

When someone sees the cover of The Little Prince for the first time, we all think that we are facing the umpteenth children’s book starring a little blonde. However, as we navigate through its pages, we realize how much the best-selling story in history can inspire adults and children alike. Published in 1943, The Little Prince follows in the footsteps of a boy who must leave a small planet invaded by baobabs to start an adventure in which he meets different characters who represent all those values ​​that we forget when we grow up. Life lessons camouflaged under a simple and agile reading required for all audiences.

Matilda, by Roal Dahl

Published in 1988, Matilda is one of Roald Dahl’s most popular books and, along with its film adaptation, an icon of any millennial’s childhood. Illustrated by Quentin Blake, Matilda tells the story of a girl raised by parents more obsessed with watching television than taking care of a daughter who has already read hundreds of books by the time she turns 5, developing strange powers that she will put into practice when she enters at school. A small contemporary classic for the little ones.

Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendack

Illustrated and written by the late Sendack, Where the Wild Things Are was published in 1964, becoming a bestseller and winner of awards such as the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award , as well as being inducted into the American Bookstores Association. A classic whose main character, little Max, longs to be a monster to scare everyone and gain respect. After being punished one night, he will travel to a jungle where he meets the real monsters, who end up crowning him their king. A timeless ode to childhood that was also adapted to the cinema in 2009.

Charlotte’s Web by EB White

Considered the best-selling children’s book after the year 2000 , Carlota’s Web was published in 1952, eventually becoming a success among children and adults. A simple story, characterized by White’s particular style, whose main character, Wilbur the pig, is going to be the victim of the typical slaughter by his master. His friendship with a spider named Carlota will give him an opportunity when his new friend begins to weave messages into a web for the cruel owner. The book was adapted to the big screen in real image in 2006.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

In July 1862, the mathematician  Charles L. Dodgson was sailing in a boat across the River Thames with the three Liddell sisters, to whom he began to tell stories to alleviate his boredom. From all these stories, and he lowered the pseudonym Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland would be born. The well-known work of the girl who followed a white rabbit to its hole and stumbled upon a parallel world is not only one of the most famous children’s works in history , but its mastery of “nonsense” has also made it an irresistible book. for adults. The book enjoyed even greater popularity after the two Disney film adaptations in 1951 and 2010.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, by Dr. Seuss

Although his fame has been greater in the United States than in the rest of the world, the story of The Grinch illustrated and written by Dr Seuss was published in 1957 on the other side of the Atlantic, becoming a literary reference for the little ones and an instant classic. to reread on Christmas Eve. Adapted to the cinema in the year 2000 with Jim Carrey as the protagonist, How the Grinch stole Christmas! it is a metaphor of the commercial character that Christmas has acquired socially throughout history through the eyes of the gruff Grinch and the inhabitants of Villaquién. An eternal struggle in which, as a background, Christmas keeps coming and gifts are not everything.

Tales of Mother Goose, by Charles Perrault

Although Perrault spent much of his life writing treatises and praising the monarchy of his time, he found time to write some of the most famous stories in history and include them in Tales of Mother Goose. Although the title may not tell you much at first, this volume includes classics such as Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood or Puss in Boots . Stories that all of us have grown up with and that turned out to be noble adaptations of old stories famous in the European oral tradition for centuries.

The Neverending Story, by Michael Ende

Considered one of the great classics of 20th century youth literature, The Neverending Story was published in 1979, becoming a cult phenomenon. Written by the German Michael Ende, the novel set between the world of Fantasy and the real world was more than just a story of flying dogs and evil empresses: a tribute to the imagination as the main ally when it comes to knowing ourselves and the world. 

What are, in your opinion, the best children’s books from your childhood?