The Most Popular Children’s Books in America, According to Research

The Most Popular Children’s Books in the Country, According to Research

March 2, 2022
popular children's books
The Most Popular Children’s Books in the Country, According to Research 3

If your kids are celebrating Read Across America week at school, chances are they have books on the brain and are eager to find some new favorites to read at home. Recent research has determined the most popular children’s books across the country.

With so many millions of kids’ books, it can be hard to know where to begin when making a selection at the library or bookstore. A recent survey determined the most popular children’s books in America by state. Check out the results and see if your favorites are on the list or discover something new.

The Most Popular Children’s Books in America

Compiling data from Time and Publisher’s Weekly, researchers at Grand Canyon University created a list of the top 44 most popular children’s books of all time. They cross-referenced this list against Google Trends data from November 2020 to November 2021 to see which book is the most searched for in each state. It’s important to note that they focused on books for younger readers, leaving titles like the Harry Potter series off of the list.

Out of the 44 books from the initial list, a little over half were the number one book in at least one state. Dr. Seuss’ books reigned in southern states, with titles like The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham coming in at the number one spot. Out west, in states like California, Eric Carle’s books, like The Very Hungry Caterpillar, took top honors. While the northeast can’t get enough of Winnie The Pooh.

popular children's books
The Most Popular Children’s Books in the Country, According to Research 4

The Number One Children’s Book In America

With eight states claiming the title as their most popular children’s book, Dr. Seuss’ Cat in the Hat was the winner overall. The Poky Little Puppy, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, and Harold and the Purple Crayon, all tied for second place.

Several other timeless books took top honors in other states, including Where the Wild Things Are, Tikki Tikki Tembo, Where the Sidewalk Ends, and Goodnight Moon.

Children’s Book Recommendations

Looking for more book recommendations? Check out some of our book lists:

What are your family’s favorite children’s books? To celebrate Read Across America Week, share any classics your kids love in our Local Anchor Facebook group.

Shahrzad Warkentin

Shahrzad Warkentin

Shahrzad is a parenting lifestyle writer and mom of two adventure-loving kids. She is a Los Angeles native where she lives with her husband, daughter, son, and their dog. She has worked in digital media since 2009 and written for Pampers, Red Tricycle, Romper, and What To Expect among others. Previously she was a film and television writer with work featured on Nickelodeon. Follow Shahrzad on IG @writersher

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