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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

The Top 100 Board Books Poll Countdown: #30-26

Two surprises on today’s list. First, there is the fact that Llama Llama makes two appearances on a single list. The second is that all but one of these books originally appeared as picture books and were since adapted. Is this a sign of things to come? As we near the Top 10, will everything there just be picture books shrunken down? Only time will tell. In the meantime, enjoy the bounty:

 #30 – Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney (2018)


Of course I’m having a hard time looking at good old Llama Llama these days without thinking of the Ludacris rap of it. Long before it was a board book it was a favorite readaloud for librarian storytimes. I well remember when I first found it and a friend said that the “llama drama” was a favorite in storytimes. I bet it still is, no matter what the format. Godspeed, Anna Dewdney.


#29 – All the World by Liz Garton Scanlon, ill. Marla Frazee (2015)


“Love the original picture book, had to include the board book version. One of my all time favorite stories. Nice quiet moments in the illustrations. Gorgeous.”   – Cheryl Gladfelter

One of the things I like about the board book version of this Caldecott Honor title is how it enraptures young audiences. You’d think that a book this soft and quiet wouldn’t hold their interest. You would be utterly and completely wrong. Plus I love watching the storm roll in and the repeating cast of characters.

 #28 – Llama Llama Hoppity-hop! by Anna Dewdney (2012)


“Cute and movement; pairs with One Little Froggy Goes Hop and If You’re Happy and You Know It.” – Mary, Parkway Central Children’s Department

“Again, I’m choosing the title that I use most often in storytime, but I would love to give the whole series a big gold star! I use this one the most because the kids can do the actions as you read the book, so it’s great for a motion and movement storytime. Llama Llama is so sweet, and I love how the board books are their own stories with appropriate text and illustrations, instead of shrunken-down versions of the picture books with no editing.” – Cara Frank, Clermont County Public Library

I’m with Cara on this one. Of all the Llama Llama board books this one is probably the best. The other board book (Llama Llama Nighty-Night) is odd because it never mentions the red pajamas. At least this book stands its own. Pajamas need not apply.

 #27 – A Book of Sleep by Il Sung Na (2011)


“I am a sucker for his artwork. I had trouble picking just one for this list. But I think this one translates best to a board book.” – Elisabeth

Born in South Korea, Il Sung Na (according to his website) currently lives in Kansas City. For a fun time, go to his site and look at the ceramics he’s created there. The very definition of a man of many talents.

 #26 – Clap Hands by Helen Oxenbury (1987)


After the tenth read or so of this book the words were permanently imprinted in my brain. Someday I’ll be in the nursing home able only to repeat the words of this book and little else. How could I resist? It’s so sweet! Really, its sole flaw is how they Americanized it. You can see it in the very rhymes. It reads, “Blow a trumpet, bang a drum / wave to daddy wave to mom.” That little soft rhyme jarred me every time I came to it. Wave to “mum” would have worked so much better. Ah well.


Top 100 Board Books Poll Results









#35 – 31

About Elizabeth Bird

Elizabeth Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.


  1. Oh, no, Betsy, when you’re in the home you’ll also be saying, “The moon has set not long ago/Now everybody goes below…” and I’ll be repeating the words to “Moo, Baa, La La La.”