When I glance across traffic into the windows of the minivan idling next to me, odds are the children’s heads bent over their screens.
Their parents have thrust them movies and mind-numbing games to capture their attention and give peace to the otherwise rambunctious group. In my family, whenever we were in the car for an extended period of time, my mother would pop in an audiobook that the whole family could enjoy. As soon as the voice began, the car fell silent, the only noise belonging to the narrator’s vibrant characters and voices. The audiobooks gave us the opportunity to participate in something as a family and also kept us munchkins entertained.
Whether you are headed to the cabin for the weekend, or embarking on an epic cross-country road trip to see the world’s biggest ball of yarn, these audiobooks will definitely keep the whole family engaged. Here are some of our staff’s favorite children’s audiobooks that are sure to captivate you and your little ones for hours on end.
By Arnold Lobel (Ages 3-5)
Generations of children love the award-winning stories of Frog and Toad. Their many adventures are sure to teach listeners of all ages a little something about love, friendship, and kindness. This audio collection includes all four Frog and Toad books and is read with wit and charm by their author Arnold Lobel.
By Shel Silverstein (Ages 3-5)
From the legendary author of Where the Sidewalk Ends, A Light in the Attic, Falling Up, and The Giving Tree comes an unforgettable new character in children’s literature your children are bound to love. Follow Runny Babbit and his many friends who speak a topsy-turvy language all their own in Shel Silverstein’s latest book Runny Babbit. Laugh along with Runny and his mixed-up words, this is a children’s book sure to tickle everyone’s funny bone.
By C.S. Lewis (Ages 7 and up)
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is the first novel in C.S. Lewis’s masterful Chronicles of Narnia. Dive into the magical world of Narnia with Lucy, Edmund, Susan, and Peter on their journey to defeat the White Witch who has cast the land in an eternal winter. This epic adventure is a classic tale of good vs. evil and one that the whole family will love.
By Cressida Cowell (Ages 8 and up)
Introducing Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III, an unlikely hero who has a knack for adventure (or maybe misadventure) as he clumsily tries to win the approval of his Viking clan, the Tribe of the Hairy Hooligans. Discover where the story of How to Train Your Dragon began with the first instillment of this hilarious series. Loved by kids and parents alike, this book is sure to keep everyone laughing.
By Marie Rutkoski (Ages 9 and up)
When the Prince of Bohemia commissions Petra’s father to build the finest astronomical clock, the Prince steals her father’s eyes, enhances them, and wears them as his own. It is up to Petra to reclaim her father’s eyes and in doing so, finds that people in the castle are not as they seem and everyone’s hiding something up their sleeve. Marie Rutkoski’s startling debut novel, about the risks we take to protect those we love, brims with magic, political intrigue, and heroism. This book will take your family on an amazing adventure they won’t forget.
By Sharon Creech (Ages 10 and up)
In her Newbery award-winning novel, Sharon Creech intricately weaves together two tales, one funny, one bittersweet, to create a compelling, and utterly moving story of love, loss, and the complexity of human emotion. A heartwarming tale following the journey of a young girl as she rediscovers her past, and a family classic that any young teen would enjoy.
What’s your family listening to this summer? Let us know in the comments!