Book subscription services are a great way to access a range of books that are curated to your specific tastes. And they are not just for adults – there are also clubs for children. The best children’s book subscriptions will provide opportunities for children and young adults to explore the topics they care about most, and summer vacation is a great time to sign up for a book subscription service so your kids can catch up on their reading and develop the reading skills they need. And there are plenty of opportunities to engage young learners while they’re out of school.
We encourage our children to do soas a way to occupy themselves in times when a friend is not around or a screen is not allowed. Of course, for all the advantages gives a young mind — stimulates brain and imagination, builds empathy, increases vocabulary, yada yada. As someone who worked from home long before the pandemic, sometimes I need the house to be quiet without the guilt .
Now, your first destination for “free” books should be your local library, where you can get them in physical and(check , and for more than the latter). But if your library or local bookstore isn’t cutting it, a book subscription box could help keep your kids turning the pages. To that end, here are nine of the best children’s book subscriptions available, from social books to YA novels. Each has new book selections with each shipment and there are clubs for every age group. We update this list periodically.
Let’s start with Amazon. If you’re a Prime member, you can subscribe to the Prime Book Box, which delivers selected hardcover books for children 12 and under. The cost is $20 per box, and you can sign up to receive a box every one, two, or three months. There are boxes for ages 0-2, 3-5, 6-8 and 9-12. The up to 2 year old box includes four board books and the other two hardcover books. You enter your preferences and Amazon will send you a preview of your selections, which you can revise before the box ships. Or you can skip the editing step and be surprised when the box arrives.
Bookroo has three age groups for its book clubs: 0-3 years, 3-6 years and 7-10 years. You will receive three tables for the youngest group, two picture books for the middle group and two chapter books for the oldest group. You can sign up to receive alternating subscriptions to community books and picture books if you have young children of different ages. Or if you sign up for two separate subscriptions, you can get 15% off the second subscription. You can’t preview books before Bookroo ships them, but it aims to find hidden gems you haven’t heard of before. And if you get a book you already own, you can get a $5 credit if you send Bookroo a picture of you giving a duplicate to a friend. And the books that Bookroo sends come individually wrapped — because what kid doesn’t love opening a present?
With Literati Kids, you’re basically renting books with the option to own them. For $10 a month, you get five books a month, but you have to return them after the first week unless you want to buy them for what Amazon is currently charging for them. It’s a fun way to expose your kids to a bunch of different books without having to buy every single one. Literati offers a prepaid return label to make sending books you don’t want to keep free and fairly painless. Each month Literati chooses a different theme for the books it sends out and has five age categories: Neo (0-3 years old), Sprout (3-5 years old), Nova (5-7 years old), Sage (7-9 years old) and Phoenix ( 9-12 years). And if moms and dads are jealous of their children’s literary books that arrive each month, there’s also a book club for adults.
The Book Drop
This book club is run by Bethany Beach Books, an independent bookstore in Bethany Beach, Delaware. It has clubs for adults and three for children: The Book Droplet (ages 3-7), Intermediate (ages 8-12) and Young Adult (13 and up). You will receive one book per month chosen by the bookstore staff. The two older clubs feature paperbacks, and the Book Droplet club features hardcover picture books. The Middle Grade Club is $10 per month, the YA Club is $13 per month, and the Book Droplet Club is $20 per month. You will also be charged $4 per month for shipping to any club. You will have to trust the bookstore staff because you are unable to offer any information about the types of books your child likes to read, and you cannot return a book you receive if you already own it.
Once upon a time book
This book club feels a little over the top, making it a great gift for the parents or—even better—grandparents of young adults. For $65 a month, Once Upon a Book Club sends a new youth title aimed at ages 14 and up — along with three to five individually wrapped gifts, each corresponding to a page number in the books. Your YA reader will need to exercise some self-discipline because gifts will act as spoilers if opened before reaching a given page in the book. Also included is a 5×7-inch print of book quotes and discussion questions and reading dates for live online discussions. You can also send a one-time gift box instead of buying a subscription, which makes a great holiday or birthday gift for the young readers on your list.
Equal opportunity bookcase
This book subscription service is just getting started, and it does two admirable things: It features books with diverse characters — every book it selects includes at least one character of color — and it donates one book for every book it sells. It sends you three picture books a month for children aged one to six. And he donates books to Bernie’s Book Bank, an organization that puts free books into the hands of underprivileged children in Chicago. Each box from the Equal Opportunity Book Box includes an information sheet about the books of the month and an educational drawing activity. It costs more per month than most book clubs, but each box you receive means three books are donated to children in need.
Similar to an equal opportunity bookcase, OurShelves features books featuring diverse and inclusive characters from underrepresented identities. However, instead of sending out books monthly, this club operates on a quarterly schedule. It offers three clubs for children: Sunshine Box (0-2 years), Rainbow Box (2-5 years) and Treehouse Box (5-8 years). For each subscription, you can choose to receive three or five books each quarter. The three-book boxes are priced at $36 for the Sunshine Box and $51 for the Rainbow Box or Treehouse Box. Shipping is included. Discounts are available if you buy an annual subscription, and you can save 10% if you buy a second subscription.
There are many book subscriptions on Cratejoy for children and young adults. Children’s book boxes range in price from $10 to $31 a month and contain everything from chalkboards and picture books to science and art-themed activity books. For YA, there’s a mix of new and used book clubs that cost as little as $6 a month.
BookCase.Club is one of the cheaper book subscriptions at just $13 per month. It has age groups of 0-2, 2-4, 5-6, 7-8 and pre-teen, and you can choose a boys or girls field. You get three books a month that are a mix of activity books and picture books or chapter books. There’s also a Teenage Dream club that features two YA novels each month.
Due to some shipping delays, this club isn’t taking new orders right now, but it’s worth keeping an eye out for when they start up again.
Paper books not your thing? Here are some resources for e-readers
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health care professional with any questions you may have about your health condition or health goals.