We've been reading and picking our Favorite Picture Books for Valentine's Day. Here are the ones that we have enjoyed the most!
One of the best and easiest things I have ever done as a parent is to make seasonal book baskets. I only pull them out during the appropriate season. I do this partly because I hate reading books about snow in July and partly because we have so many books that I just don't have room to keep them all out all the time.
But the best thing about rotating book baskets is that every few months, it feels like we get all new books because it's been a year since we've seen them. Book basket rotation days are everyone's favorite around here. It has been such an easy way to make an ordinary week feel special and memorable.
Alternatively, you could keep seasonal lists of books that you take to the library at the beginning of a new season or holiday. I could see this becoming a very treasured family memory as well.
This week, we pulled out all the Picture Books for Valentine's Day. Most seasons, I gift the kids one or two new books to add to the basket too. I am completely convinced that Books always make the best gifts - they just keep on giving for years and years. We normally get a few new ones from the library too, so there's a little something more to look forward to.
Now, not all of these picture books for Valentine's Day are strictly Valentine books. But they are all based on themes of love and friendship and are really fun books to read and gift for Valentine's day. They make great Valentine gifts and even decor when you line them all up on a table, shelf, or mantle.
Note: the Amazon links in this post are affiliate links.
Picture Books for Valentine's Day
I Love You Like A Pig by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Greg Pizzoli | We actually created a set of Free Printable Valentines based on this book because we enjoy it so much! It's a silly nonsense sort of book, but the illustrations are adorable and it makes my kids giggle every time. I like you like a tree, but I love you like a pig. As far as I'm concerned, Mac Barnett wins every time he writes a book.
Love by Matt de la Pena, illustrated by Loren Long | This is a poetic look at love from a child's perspective. It's really really beautiful! And it makes a lovely bed time story because it's such a lyrical read. The preview on Amazon will give you a good sense of how good this book is, so check that out first.
This is Not A Valentine by Carter Higgins, illustrated by Lucy Ruth Cummins | This is one of my most favorites on the list! All through the book a little boy gives his friend, a little girl, small gifts that he explains are not Valentines. But while he may not be handing out Valentines, the book itself is absolutely about the real meaning of Valentines. It doesn't have to be about love or about big grand gestures one day of the year. Valentine's day is just a day to honor our everyday friendships.
The Love Letter by Anika Aldamuy Denise, illustrated by Lucy Ruth Cummins | Hedgehog, Bunny, and Squirrel are best friends. One day they find a Love Letter, but they don't know who it's from! It's a mystery that leads to a sweet little mix-up with a happy ending. The illustrations in this one could not be more charming!
One Zillion Valentines by Frank Modell | I really, really love this one! It's an older picture book from 1987, but the story will be good forever. Milton and Marvin, two good friends, decide Valentines aren't just for girls and they set out to make sure everyone gets a Valentine. You'll love it.
In My Heart: A Book of Feelings by Jo Witek, illustrated by Christine Roussey | My sister recommended this one to us and it's been a hit here. Reminiscent of Dr. Seuss's My Many Colored Days, it's a book about feelings. It's perfect for the preschool crowd, but my older girls like it too. I adore the Five Star illustrations!
Love Is . . . by Diane Adams, illustrated by Claire Keane | This is a tear jerker, but such a sweet story about love. It follows a little girl who takes a baby bird home and raises it until it's ready to head out on its own. The poetic words are sparse and the story is mostly told through the beautiful illustrations. This simple story will likely bring tears to your eyes. This is our most heartwarming pick for Valentine's day.
Plant a Kiss by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, illustrated by Peter Reynolds | My mom gifted this to my kids years ago and it is still a favorite read at our house. Little Miss plants a kiss, but watch as that simple act of love blossoms and spreads. This is a wonderful book!
The Day it Rained Hearts by Felicia Bond | This is one of my kids' favorite Valentine Picture books. One day it rains hearts! Luckily Cornelia Augusta recognizes just how special this is and she collects the hearts for a very thoughtful purpose.
A Village Full of Valentines by James Stevenson | This is another oldie but goodie from a beloved author. In this sweet little animal village, all the animals have their own ideas about Valentine's Day. Clifford the turtle says he won't send any Valentines until someone sends him one first, but he's been waiting for 56 years. Meanwhile, Tricia the bird receives a Valentine that she strongly suspects has been "regifted," and the little girl mice are having a hard time deciding who gets to use the scissors for their Valentine crafting. But even with all the imperfect preparations, it's going to be a great Valentine's Day in this cute little village.
Here Comes Valentine Cat by Deborah Underwood, illustrated by Claudia Rueda | Cat doesn't like Valentine's day. In fact, he's feeling a little grumpy about the whole thing! But readers will have so much fun trying to convince him to give a valentine to his dog neighbor. A super fun read with a great message too.
The Biggest Valentine Ever by Steven Kroll | We love this little mice duo! We have their pumpkin and snowman books, and this Valentine book is just as good.
I Love You Already by Jory John, illustrated by Benji Davies | This is another funny picture book for Valentine's Day. Bear just wants to spend the day alone, but Duck is determined to make Bear like him. It makes a great read aloud!
Valensteins by Ethan Long | The Fright Club is supposed to be working on a new scare, but Fran K. Stein has something else in mind. He's making a Valentine. What could be scarier than falling in love! My kids think this one is hilarious.
Somebody Loves You Mr. Hatch by Eileen Spinelli, illustrated by Paul Yalowitz | Mr. Hatch is lonely and sad. He works at a shoelace factory, sits alone at lunch, and goes home alone at night. When he receives a note in the mail that says "Somebody loves you," he can't believe it. Who loves Mr. Hatch?! This small act of kindness has a powerful effect on Mr. Hatch's life. A wonderful book!
A Kiss For Little Bear by Maurice Sendak | I am a long time fan of the Little Bear books. I think we own every single one. But this one is definitely a family favorite. Little Bear sends his grandma a picture, which Hen delivers. But then Grandma wants to send a kiss back with Hen for Little Bear. The kiss gets all mixed up along the way, and there's even a funny love story that happens as the kiss get passed from animal to animal. You will definitely have a good laugh before the kiss finally makes it back to Little Bear. Such a sweet, fun story.
Pride and Prejudice Search and Find by Sarah Powell | I'm completely convinced that Pride and Prejudice is the ultimate love story. This beautifully illustrated search and find picture book is such a fun way to introduce kids to the characters and the story. I bought this one several years ago and my kids still think it's so much fun when I pull it out for Valentine's Day.
Hug Machine by Scott Campbell | Rory loves this book. It's about a little boy who is a hugging machine - he hugs everything he sees. Obviously, this is incredibly appealing to Rory who often becomes a hugging machine after reading this book. It's very fun!