The best books to buy for two year olds

Mum and daughter reading together - the best books for children aged 2

by Samantha Ball |

From two-years-old, your child's language is developing quickly and they probably know around 200 or more words. Encouraging reading is a great way to get your little one to expand their knowledge, enabling them to learn new words and start making connections between books and real life. Books that you can link to challenges your toddler might be facing in real life, such as potty training or brushing their teeth, are a good way to get your toddler interacting with books and seeing the positives to each story.

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Top tips for encouraging your two-year-old to read

1) Let them choose the book

By letting your little one choose their own book, they're more likely to sit and join in reading it. Repetition and rhyming words are easy for children to remember too, so even if they pick the same book each story time, they'll eventually start helping to re-read the book back to you and correct you if you read the story wrong, (especially if you skip a page to speed up story time - we've all done it!)

2) Set an example

Children learn through watching what you do and trying to copy you, which is why toy kitchens and cleaning toys are perfect gifts for children, as it teaches them social skills and how to use their imagination. With this in mind, it's a good idea to start reading while your toddler is playing. If they see you reading a book at least once a day, they'll see you doing it and be happier to join in on storytime.

3) Choose funny books

Choosing books with funny rhymes and silly storylines is a guaranteed way to keep little ones engaged with reading and eager to turn the pages! Who doesn't love a book that gives a good giggle?

Take a look at our pick of books that are perfect to read to your two-year-old:

The best books to buy for two-year-olds


Where The Wild Things Are

Best-loved monster book
Where the wild things are

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This adorable story of Max and his monsters has entertained children for years. After dressing up in his wolf costume, Max wreaks so much havoc (sound familiar?) he is sent to bed before dinner. That night, his bedroom transforms into a forest, and he is taken to where the wild things are. The perfect night-time story for all those loveable little monsters out there.

The Tiger Who Came to Tea

Best classic book
Tiger who came to tea

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Another classic that has stood the test of time, this beautiful story of Sophie and her very hungry tea-time guest is a must if you’ve got an animal-lover in your brood. Why not plan a tea-party for your own hungry tigers at the weekend?

We're Going on a Bear Hunt

Best repetition book
Going on a bear hunt

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We're going on a bear hunt, will your toddler join? This fun, repetative book is a great way to encourage children to repeat phrases!

Giraffes Can't Dance

Best confidence-building book
Giraffes cant fight

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Giraffes can't dance, can they? This funny book is a joyful read for children, with a simple moral of confidence and daring to be different.

Room on the Broom

Best witch book
Room on the broom

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The witch and her cat fly happily over forests, but when a stormy wind blows away the witch's hat, bow and wand, who will retrieve them for her?

Pirate Pete's Potty

Best potty training book

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This book is great for little ones who might be starting to potty train! It's easy to following along, and when Pirate Pete uses his potty correctly, tots can press the 'cheer' button for a noisy reward.

There's even a Princess Polly's Potty if your little one prefers this character.

How to Brush Your Teeth with Snappy Croc

Best tooth-brushing book
Snappy Croc

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This board book about brushing teeth is a lovely way to encourage tots to brush their teeth, with the help of the lovely crocodile!

Help! My Dinosaurs are Lost in the City!

Best dinosaur book

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Can your little one find the missing dinosaurs? This lovely book tests childrens puzzle-solving skills in a Where's Wally kind of way!

You Can't Take an Elephant on the Bus

Best book to make your little one laugh
Elephant on the bus

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You can't take an elephant on a bus, or ask a whale to ride a bike! This book will definitely have your little one in fits of giggles!

Peppa Pig: At the Zoo

Best Peppa Pig book
At the zoo

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What toddler doesn't love Peppa Pig? Join Peppa on her class trip to the zoo! What animals will she see?

Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You?

Best sounds book
Dr Seuss

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This book encourages children to repeat the sounds they hear in the book, with a moo moo! Hoo hoo! And a cocker-doodle-do, what else can Mr. Brown do?

Roald Dahl's Colours

Best colours book

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This lift-the-flap book will help your tots discover all the colours of the rainbow.

Roald Dahl’s 123

Best counting book

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2 little chiddlers waiting for their friend. Can you spot 1 enormous crocodile hiding in the grass? This book is a great way to teach children all about numbers and counting, with a fun little storyline.

Goodnight, Pooh

Best Winnie the Pooh book
Goodnight Pooh

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Join Winnie the Pooh as he gets ready for bed, in this delightful story with peep-through holes to play peepo!

Maisy's Bus

Maisy's bus

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Maisy’s adventures have been translated into 28 languages and sold over 25 million copies. You can now find more than 150 stories full of letters, numbers, and shapes for your baby to learn, all featuring the wonderfully illustrated mouse.

The Baby's Catalogue

Best routine building book
Baby Catalogue

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The Baby's Catalogue is a lovely picture book of objects and scenes from a baby's world. The content of this book has made it a classic addition to your nursery library.


Best classic peek-a-boo book

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Peepo! Is set in the early forties, showing an unpretentious vision of a baby's contented life based on Allan Ahlberg's own working-class childhood.

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