One way to get kids excited about reading? Sign up for one of the awesome book subscription boxes that deliver hand-curated titles to your doorstep each month. The options for book subscriptions for kids have grown exponentially over the last few years and it’s wonderful! Because we all know kids go crazy for any package that’s addressed just to them.
The Little Feminist Book Subscription
Here are some of our favorites, to help you pick exactly the right book subscription box for your kid’s needs and interests, whether that’s finding a theme that gets a reluctant reading reading, seeing a protagonist who looks like them, or a book that comes with a few extra goodies to help them keep their imagination going, even after the book is closed and back on the shelf.
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A book subscription box for kids who need more female protagonists on their shelves:
The Little Feminist book box is a tremendous hit at my house. And I’m the mom of a boy. I loved the poetic and inspiring Drum Dream Girl the box included, plus the DIY drumsticks and and coloring book that came with it. Each box comes with a similar book and related activity to help kids engage with the story, and you can specify 0-3 years old, 3-7, or 7-9. And while it’s created to empower girls specifically, my toddler son really loved all the titles that were appropriate for him — and not just because of the drumsticks, although that helped.
A book subscription box for kids featuring Black heroes:
Our contributor Georgette first shared this book subscription box for kids a couple of years ago, and she raved about it for good reason — the box includes well-curated, age-appropriate children’s books with African-American characters, at a time that only 22% of children’s books feature characters of color. That makes this a great subscription box for Black children who want to see characters who look like them when they snuggle up for a bedtime story, or frankly, all kids who should know that heroes come in every color, and that different backgrounds inform different stories.
Each box from Just Like Me comes with 2-3 books plus activities, and you can choose from 3 age groups, from 0 to 12.
A book subscription box for kids with very particular taste in books:
If you’re shopping for a little kid who loves trains and planes, a middle grader who loves nature, a tween who’s obsessed with page-turning chapter books, or a kid who can’t get enough of YA dystopian fiction, GiftLit is definitely worth a look. You select the child’s age, the length of subscription (3-, 6-, or 12-months) — then search by interest to select one book to send, from an impressive collection put together by some really respected industry experts.
Kids can even exchange the book if it’s not their thing. Or, you can choose the Build-Your-Own collection, which allows kids to choose their very own book each month. (Ooh, book shopping!) We’d say that GiftLit as a gift feels a lot more personalized and special than some of the other kids book subscription boxes, but the trade-off is receiving fewer books each month.
A book subscription box for kids supporting an indie bookseller
I feel torn about book subscription boxes sometimes because I don’t want to take business away from my local indie bookstore and I often rely on their recommendations for gifts. But this box is curated by the child’s book lovers and experts at the The Reading Bug, a beloved indie children’s bookstore in California.The selected books are all staff favorites, of course, which is totally the best method for finding new favorites (aside from asking librarians).
You can choose from a Baby Bug Box for kids 0-30 months (very specific!), or personalize the subscription based on your child’s age, up to 13. There’s even a decent price for a box customized for two kids in the home, which is a joy have you ever seen siblings fight over books.
A book subscription box for little kids who already own the classics:
Of all the book subscription boxes out there, I think Elephant Books really nails the presentation with a beautiful brown paper package tied up with string. Inside, each package features outstanding book curation of the newest board books and hardcover picture books, to help delight kids with brand new titles they haven’t yet seen. Bonus: No risk of getting another copy of Goodnight Moon. They only offer two categories, picture books and board books, making it a great birthday gift for young kids, and even a smart shower gift that keeps on giving.
A book subscription box for kids who live in small spaces
If you love the idea of receiving new children’s books each month, but you’re an apartment-dweller, small home family, or Marie Kondo devotee, I definitely recommend you look into Literati. It’s best described as a Stitch Fix for children’s books meets that old Columbia Record and Tape club; each month you’ll receive a new assortment of age-appropriate books. Enjoy them for all for a week, then only keep the favorites and return the rest.
Just be sure you’re the type of person who stays on top of returns; you have a week to read and return the non-keepers before you get charged for them. But it’s a nice way to get to discover lots of new kinds of books for your kid, especially if you can’t make it to the library as frequently as you’d like.
A book subscription box for kids to encourage creativity and imagination:
If your kid is obsessed with dress-up and role play, consider the Little Bookish Wardrobe subscription book box for kids. It includes one new book each month, plus costumes and props to help kids bring the story to life. I think this could be a wonderful gift for kids who need a little extra help getting excited about reading — or for those kids who don’t need any help dressing up and acting out their own “to be continued…” sequel of the books they do love.
Little Bookish doesn’t offer different age options, but the books and costumes seem geared toward toddlers and preschoolers, and decidedly girl-centric.
A book subscription box for kids that’s the biggest bargain out there:
I’m all about reusing, regifting, and donating (gently used) children’s books to reduce waste, and while I love the access to a zillion free titles at the library, there’s something to be said for owning children’s books you love. So I was so happy to discover Murphy’s bulk book subscription boxes, which ship used books from their shop in Ohio. Murphy’s definitely offers the best bargain out there — 5 books are just $15 a month, or a mere $10 a month if you pay upfront for an entire year. Plus, for ever box you buy, they’ll donate one book to a child in need.
Since they’re used and presumably coming from the books Murphy’s happens to have in stock, their boxes are likely going to be a little less carefully curated than other subscription services, and you’re likely to find more mass market books featuring licensed characters as opposed to new Caldecott honorees, but any books that get kids reading are good, and you can’t beat the deal.