My Top 5 Favorite Read-Aloud Books

Yo there! Reading aloud has been a special part of my family since the beginning of ever, and quite a few treasures have become life-long favorites and memory-makers that way. Here are five of my favorite (and believe me, it was sooo hard to choose!) books that have been read aloud to me over the years!


Top 5 Read-Aloud Books

stories that were read aloud to me, and that you need to read aloud with someone

1. age recommendation: all


Diamond, by Paul Willis

““Hello?” I tried to keep the irritation out of my voice. I guess all the inconvenience was my own fault. After all, becoming a detective means signing up for everyone’s problems even if they come at midnight.

“Rory, I need your help. My diamond was stolen.”

When Detective Greywood gets a midnight case from a forgetful friend, he thinks it’s just another robbery. But when he learns his client stored the world’s eighth largest diamond in a highly secure bank vault, he knows there must be much more to the case. Only the owner himself could retrieve the diamond.

A short story containing odd friends, two eventful dinner parties, and a coffee-fueled detective.”

Written by my clever brother, the mystery and whit and quirky characters in this short tale make for a good laugh and exercising of your brain perfect to share with someone. 🙂

2. age recommendation: all


The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street, by Karina Yan Glaser

“The Vanderbeekers have always lived in the brownstone on 141st Street. It’s practically another member of the family. So when their reclusive, curmudgeonly landlord decides not to renew their lease, the five siblings have eleven days to do whatever it takes to stay in their beloved home and convince the dreaded Beiderman just how wonderful they are. And all is fair in love and war when it comes to keeping their home.”

Our mom read this to the entire family over the course of a few evenings, and we loved it one and all! The whole thing reminded us so much of our own family’s adventures, and we even had fun deciding which character was most like each of our siblings! XD

The family and neighbors and small town feel are such dears with real-life faults, and there are adorable memories locked up in every single aspect of the place. ❤ My personal favorite character? Oliver or Jessie for sure, though all of them are darlings. Even down to the trash-truck man. 😀


So yeah, just go make a pillow fort and read The Vanderbeekers with all your siblings and some cookies, k?!!

3. age recommendation: 10+ for understandability


The Pushcart War, by Jean Merrill


It’s a story of how regular people banded together and, armed with little more than their brains and good aim, defeated a mighty foe.

Not long ago the streets of New York City were smelly, smoggy, sooty, and loud. There were so many trucks making deliveries that it might take an hour for a car to travel a few blocks. People blamed the truck owners and the truck owners blamed the little wooden pushcarts that traveled the city selling everything from flowers to hot dogs. Behind closed doors the truck owners declared war on the pushcart peddlers. Carts were smashed from Chinatown to Chelsea. The peddlers didn’t have money or the mayor on their side, but that didn’t stop them from fighting back. They used pea shooters to blow tacks into the tires of trucks, they outwitted the police, and they marched right up to the grilles of those giant trucks and dared them to drive down their streets. Today, thanks to the ingenuity of the pushcart peddlers, the streets belong to the people—and to the pushcarts.”

This completely fictional history account is a little hard to explain but hilarious and genius nonetheless! Read aloud by Mom during mealtimes, it was much enjoyed by young and old alike. 😀 Hm, I really need to re-read this…

4. age recommendation: all ❤

32337619Henry and the Chalk Dragon, by Jennifer Trafton

“In the town of Squashbuckle, just about anything can happen, and when Henry Penwhistle draws a mighty Chalk Dragon on his door, the dragon does what Henry least expects–it runs away. Now Henry’s art is out in the world for everyone to see, and it’s causing trouble for him and his schoolmates Oscar and Jade. If they don’t stop it, the entire town could be doomed! To vanquish the threat of a rampaging Chalk Dragon, Sir Henry Penwhistle, Knight of La Muncha Elementary School, is going to have to do more than just catch his art–he’s going to have to let his imagination run wild. And THAT takes bravery.”

The synopsis, though accurately wonderful, doesn’t even say it all!!! Mrs. Trafton weaves in heart-breakingly-beautiful encouragement with her delicious writing style and hug-able characters.

Think this is just a children’s book? IN NO WAY!!!

Read it. Love it. Hug it. Be encouraged by it.

It’s a dangerous thing to open a door.

But that, after all, is the only way to find an adventure.

~Henry and the Chalk Dragon

For the artist, the writer, the story-teller, the teacher, the dreamer, the misfit, the parent, the encourager, EVERYONE.

5. age recommendation: 10+

peter marshall

A Man Called Peter, by Catherine Marshall

Biography told like a story, this book is the “gripping adventure of a poor Scottish immigrant who became chaplain of the United States Senate and one of the most revered men in America”. 

I didn’t realize how much this book means to me until I started thinking about this blog post. The movie had already succeeded in making me laugh and weep multiple times before I even read the book. And the book is a hundred times deeper and longer and wonderful…er!

I wish I could have met Reverand Peter Marshall. He was an amazing man for God, and his wife’s book about him is a story that should never be forgotten. Mr. Marshall, thank you for so faithfully following God no matter where He led and leaving your example for me to see.

The end of this book gets us every time… be warned it’s that amazing. 😉 *cue tears*

Those are my Top 5 Read-Aloud Books… and since today is Wednesday… *fails to do a simple math problem* *tries again*… that means we’re officially halfway through the Five Fall Favorites party! Whaat?!! Already?! 


Let’s Talk Books…

What is one book you loved reading with someone?

Do you have a favorite reading snack? I eat just about anything and everything while I’m reading. Seriously, either I forget to eat at all or I just gulp anything down I’m so distracted! lol Warm french fries are definitely tops for a cozy reading snack (is that weird? XD ), though getting to eat the apple cores leftover from whatever Kate just baked is super great too! I’ve been known to eat through lots, maybe even bushels, of apples before! 


Guess what genre we get to discuss tomorrow?? *grins knowingly*

Hmmm… I’m actually considering not telling…

JK, jk I’ll tell!!

CHRISTMAS STORIES! So be sure to come back Thursday 10/4/18 for that! 😀



FFF - bushels


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42 thoughts on “My Top 5 Favorite Read-Aloud Books

    1. haha Same! It was sooo good! 🙂 Are you able to choose a favorite character? I really hope the author (*stares meaningfully at my college-busy brother*) writes more about Detective Greywood someday!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh goodness, I don’t know! 😀 I read it a long time ago, so I don’t remember every single character. I did like the main character though. 😉
        *nods* Yes, he needs to write more! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Ah same, I need to reread it soon! haha Yep, Rory is such a great MC! XD I remember also enjoying the old friend guy… was his name Henry or something? He was so delightfully weird. 😀
          Agreed! We should start a petition. 😉 😛

          Liked by 1 person

  1. I just recently read “A Man Called Peter” and OH MY! Best book ever. ❤ I must say I cried like a baby at the end…At least, I cried a little bit. Okay, maybe six tears, but that's a lot, right?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Gaaaahhh I so get you, Amie! *sobs* I hardly ever cry at literature but this… this. ❤

      You very much need to watch the movie version… they did such a good job and it will slay you at the end too. 😥 ❤ And the casting for Peter is absolutely superb! *tries not to fangirl too much*

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Okay, I’m convinced! I need to read “The Vanderbeekers” and “The Pushcard War”! And can I have an empty bushel basket? How about that one we just emptied? My books are getting heavy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yep. You do. It’s a fact. Go do it, Rebekah.

      Ikr?! Billions of books needing to be read and only so many arms! 😛 lol Can’t wait for you to read them!!!


    1. Yep, I agree! I enjoyed Diamond a lot. 😀 Neato, my mom actually read it aloud to the fam once which was fun, but I originally read it to myself like you. Which begs the All-Important Reader Question– do you prefer ebooks or paperbacks? 😉


      1. Paperbacks, hands down. 😉 I’ll really only read an ebook if I can get it for free (and I don’t have a Kindle, anyway, so it would have to be a free PDF :P). Paperbacks are just worth more, and I can carry them around anywhere I want. Plus, you don’t have to stare at a screen to read a real book. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

        1. 100% agreed, which is why having so many local libraries is such a huge blessing for me!! I really only read ebooks if that’s the only way I can get the book or the cheapest option! 😉 Then if I super like the story I figure out a way to get it in paperback in the future. 😀


          1. Yeah, ebooks are easier, especially when a book is new, and buying it/checking it out wouldn’t be on my list of priorities. An ebook can also introduce me to an author, so I can judge the potential of the author’s other books. But still, for enjoyment purposes, paperbacks take the cake. 😉

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Oh yes, that’s super smart! Try out the author’s writing in an easy and more frugal way, then if you really love the book finding it in paperback!


  3. I LOVE “A Man Called Peter” — it is SO sweet!! And now I’m gonna have to find a copy of the Vanderbeeker’s book — cause it looks interesting! Yet another book added to that teetering pile of books that are begging to be read….next I know, I’m gonna have to break up the fights amongst them of which will be read first 😀

    “Phantom Tollbooth” was my favourite I had read aloud to me — years ago, but it is pretty much an annual read around our house. It first introduced me to the wonderful world of words — and their meanings! I *think* you would enjoy it, if you haven’t read it already =) Another favourite is “The 21 Balloons” — an older book, but so. very. good.

    I’m like you with eating and reading — So I normally stick with an iced mocha (in summer) or a hot peppermint mocha (in winter). If I *HAVE* to munch on something, chocolate covered espresso beans or the coffee nut M’n’M’s =)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hoorah!! SOO happy to find another A Man Called Peter fan!! 🙂 🙂
      Yes, find a copy of Vanderbeekers and gobble it up!
      haha Teetering pile of books? Poor thing. 😛 😉 It’s a splendid problem to have!! XD (ok, i literally pictured books fighting with each other… thanks for the epicly weird mental picture! 😂😂😂)

      EEEEHHH!! I love Phantom Tollbooth!! It’s so wonderfully odd and clever and funny and meaningful somehow too! I like never meet anyone who has read it! *squeals and hugs you* All the play-on-words just crack me up. XD And 21 Balloons? I’m currently reading this gem aloud to my youngest sister! High five for oldies-but-goodies!

      Mmm hot peppermint mocha sounds worth trying! I’m not big on coffee unless its taste is masked in a cold mocha frap, but that actually sounds good!

      Thanks for your fun comment, Kaitlyn, and happy reading! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. *smirks* Your welcome for that one! Us poor book lovers who feel like they *have* to read every single thing written are having a blast at this party — teetering piles and all 😀 But yes, it’s a wonderful thing to deal with — breaking up those fights =P I’ll let ya in on a secret — when I first learned to read, I was terribly frightened that one day I would run out of good books. It literally haunted me — I had nightmares about a world where I was tired of rereading all the same books. Just picture that — a world without books.
        On second thought, DON’T DO IT!!!! It’s a terrible thought!!
        Now I have the opposite problem (if you can even call it that ;D) — TOO MANY BOOKS!!!!! AUGGHH!!!!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yay! So glad you’re having fun, teetering book piles and all! 😉
          Aw that is so cute and tragical!! lol Absolutely no fear of that now, right? 😀 hehee
          Yikes, that IS a terrible thought!!! It would be such a colorless, uninteresting world! But maybe there would be more verbal storytelling… and that would be cool. 😉


  4. Anna “The Vanderbeeks ” sound like a book I would be interested in. “The Pushcart” hits home. I live in New York (not the city} but my ancestors were right in the middle of the city. Sounds like a hilarious book.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I think The Vanderbeeks and The Pushcart Wars will be on my to read list. They sound like books I can relate to growing up under a landlord and living in a city with a lot of traffic.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So happy you want to read Vanderbeekers and The Pushcart Wars, Marilyn! I really liked both, and can’t wait to hear what you think of them! 🙂


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