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Reading Recommendations

What should I read next?

What book should I recommend next for each particular student/teacher?

What should I purchase for my library?

This page provides lists of book reviewers and lists of recommended reading, information and resources for Readers' Advisory, and free online libraries and ebooks.


Book Reviews and Recommendations - Free and Online

Picture Book Recommendations for Critical Literacy:

Social Justice Books: an excellent website with curated book lists, reviews and recommendations, guides...

Guide for Selecting Anti-Bias Children's Books:

Selecting and Rating Titles for Social Justice Books: (includes list of questions students can ask)

American Indians in Children's Literature (with book reviews)

Research on Diversity in Youth Literature, a journal by St. Catherine University

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers Resource Library: including themed lists, educator guides, lists of diverse books, seasonal and holiday book lists, book trailers, excerpts, book websites, author visits, early readers, awards,  common core guide, and a levelled book spreadsheet.

The Canadian Children's Book Centre - A "national, not- for-profit organization ... dedicated to encouraging, promoting and supporting the reading, writing, illustrating and publishing of Canadian books for young readers."

Quill and Quire - "the magazine of the Canadian book trade."

ALA Recommended Reading - "A collection of ALA's literature award winners and various notable reading lists." Great resource, including award winners, levelled reading, and books celebrating diversity.

Goodreads - "Goodreads is the world’s largest site for readers and book recommendations. Our mission is to help people find and share books they love."

Common Sense Media 

Book Reviews:

Book Lists:

Kirkus - from children to adult book reivews - big, high quality site

School Library Journal's Reviews+ - Book reviews, lists, media, and more

Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) magazine - great booklists! - "library journal dedicated to the needs of young adult librarians, the advocacy of young adults, and the promotion of young adult literature and reading"

Good Comics for Kids  ​

James Patterson's READKIDDOREAD - "Dedicated to making kids readers for life"

The Classroom Bookshelf - Teaching with Children's and Young Adult Literature in the 21st Century


Did You Ever Stop to Think - "Books, books and books: specialising in children's literature and women's writing." Book reviews and reading lists by category.​ 


Teen Librarian - Libraries, teens, books, reviews, news. Has reading lists by category.


No Shelf Required - ​"Digital books and digital content (in all incarnations) and the ways they transform the world." 

LibraryThing - Zeitgeist page - interesting lists/stats of what is popular with their users.

***Booklist Online - Usually a paid resource, Booklist Online, the book review journal of the American Library Association, is free due to COVID-19 until further notice!

Also Booklist Online's Booklinks - "Literature-based resources for K-8 educators"

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Readers' advisory is defined as "a library service for leisure readers whereby libraries suggest to readers what to read next based on this reader’s interests, tastes, and mood" (Dali, 2015, p. 372). Readers' advisory is the art of finding the right book at the right time for the right reader. 

But readers' advisory should not only exist in the library! Students have much to gain if their teachers apply readers' advisory strategies in the classroom. Studies show that positive experiences with reading can create life-long readers (Krashen, 2011). Jim Trelease, the author of The Read-Aloud Handbook, has even suggested that one "home run" book can create a reader (Krashen, 2011). Readers' advisory helps teachers get those "home run" books into students' hands.

Some more RA tools:

What Should I Read Next? - Excellent, user-friendly resource to find similar recommendations, but goes straight to purchasing links so beware!

Epic Reads - "Young Adult (YA) Books and Books For Teens" - Appealing web design with lots of pop culture tie-ins, but also a lot of links to merchandising/purchases.

Reading Rockets - "Launching young readers" - selection tools and advice for young children

Storyline Online - An "award-winning children’s literacy website, Storyline Online®, streams videos featuring celebrated actors reading children’s books alongside creatively produced illustrations."

International Children's Digital Library - The ICDL Foundation aims to "support the world's children in becoming effective members of the global community - who exhibit tolerance and respect for diverse cultures, languages and ideas -- by making the best in children's literature available online free of charge. The Foundation pursues its vision by building a digital library of outstanding children's books from around the world and supporting communities of children and adults in exploring and using this literature through innovative technology designed in close partnership with children for children."

An excellent resource for children's books in a wide variety of languages!

The image shows the ICL's "Simple Search", an incredibly user-friendly catalogue search for children:

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International Children's Library - Searc

Online, free and/or open source books

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