Friday, November 14, 2014

A Dozen Thanksgiving Picture Books

Thanksgiving is less than 2 weeks away, and other than pumpkin pie and a vague concept of thankfulness, my kids don't know tons about the holiday, so off to the library I went to find some awesome for our bookshelf. After sifting through an assortment of picture books, it only made sense to share our favorites with you.

So, here you go, a dozen books perfect for sharing Thanksgiving with your children: the turkey, the family, the gratitude, the crisp fall weather, all of it. 

It's Thanksgiving! by Jack Prelutsky + illustrated by Marylin Hafner

We're big fans of Mr. Prelutsky's 'Scranimals' here, so when I saw he was the author of this one, I knew it was one to grab. A collection of 12 short (often funny) poems perfect for celebrating.

Thanksgiving Is Here! by Diane Goode

Love Diane Goode's illustration style, so this was another obvious grab. Shows the joyful spirit that arrives alongside family plus it reminds me much of my family gatherings.

In November by Cynthia Rylant + illustrated by Jill Kastner

A focus on all that the month brings rather than just the holiday, this book is full of similes and metaphors, so perhaps a good early elementary introduction to those as well? Lovely art to depict the world readying for winter.

Sometimes It's Turkey, Sometimes It's Feathers by Lorna and Lecia Balian

The end twist on this vintage story is great - the one I got from the library actually was in tricolor, which was super fun for my ever vintage loving self. Mrs. Grimm finds a turkey egg and sets out to raise him...

This Is the Feast by Diane Z. Shore + illustrated by Megan Lloyd

I thought this was a great introduction to the story of the Pilgrims and the first Thanksgiving - the writing style keeps it light, but it includes a little of both the struggles and the successes of what the pilgrims found in the New Land.

Over the River and Through the Wood by Lydia Maria Child + illustrated by Christopher Manson

We also love the one illustrated by Brinton Turkle, but it is rather hard to find as it has been out of print for awhile. The woodcuts depicting this classic poem (that for some reason I always associate with Christmas - whoops!) are gorgeous and frame worthy. Definitely a beautiful book to read.

Little Bear's Thanksgiving by Janice + illustrated by Mariana

Another vintage one that I was mostly intrigued about since the author and illustrator's names aren't included. Anyhoo, it's a sweet old fashioned tale and I've found it at several libraries, so hopefully you can find it, too.

Thanksgiving with Me by Margaret Willey + illustrated by Lloyd Bloom

Another one that I picked up purely for the art, but then I was captured by the sweet love this mama shares with her little girl about all her tall brothers. Not that my brothers are super tall, but I could relate to the family love.

A Plump And Perky Turkey by Teresa Bateman + illustrated by Jeff Shelly

My sons personally found this one hilarious - a town is in search of the perfect turkey for their Thanksgiving meal, but none can be found. They host a contest and recruit a turkey to judge in hopes of solving their problems.

The Thanksgiving Story by Alice Dagliesh + illustrated by Helen Sewell

Vintagey art brings each of these stories about the early settlers and the first Thanksgiving to life. My two year old wasn't interested in sitting still to listen, but my kindergartener listened while I read the stories.

An Old-Fashioned Thanksgiving by Louisa May Alcott + illustrated by Jody Wheeler

From the author of Little Women comes this tale of the Bassett family who were "poor in money, but rich in love." Simple pleasures abound. I think there are a few adaptations of this book around, but we got the one pictured above and enjoyed it.

Cranberry Thanksgiving by Wende Devlin + illustrated by Harry Devlin

This is one from *my* childhood. A sweet story from the collection of 'Cranberry' books about not judging a person at first glance and realizing there is more to each person than meets the eye.

Enjoy! Do you have any favorites that I missed? Please share!

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This post: A Dozen Thanksgiving Picture Books first appeared on Two Os Plus More on 14 November 2014


  1. Here were the books I wrote about last year: I forgot to include but really like "Gracias/Thanks" (it's bilingial) by Pat Mora. I really like Alma Flor Ada and am interested in reading her "Celebrate Thanksgiving Day with Beto and Gaby" but I haven't yet so I can't recommend it.

    1. Thanks for sharing Mandi! Bilingual books are always great - especially for this age. I know some Spanish, and my husband is conversational plus some. Thanks for the recommendations - will have to search through our library system, =)


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