Best Children's Books Most People Haven't Heard of...

Lesser known or forgotten children's books that are potential classics. Books should be older than five years.

Books should have less than 10,000 ratings. Books with more than 10,000 ratings will be removed.
1

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4.25 avg rating — 6,951 ratings
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2

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4.02 avg rating — 8,129 ratings
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3

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4.15 avg rating — 8,206 ratings
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4

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4.22 avg rating — 484 ratings
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5

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4.07 avg rating — 8,663 ratings
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6

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3.97 avg rating — 7,191 ratings
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7

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4.06 avg rating — 8,464 ratings
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8

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4.19 avg rating — 3,039 ratings
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9

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3.85 avg rating — 7,267 ratings
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10

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4.03 avg rating — 2,229 ratings
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11

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3.96 avg rating — 3,193 ratings
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12

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4.26 avg rating — 5,127 ratings
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13

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4.36 avg rating — 4,046 ratings
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14

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3.95 avg rating — 116 ratings
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15

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4.58 avg rating — 2,150 ratings
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16

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4.11 avg rating — 3,825 ratings
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17

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4.13 avg rating — 6,702 ratings
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18

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3.89 avg rating — 2,863 ratings
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19

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4.26 avg rating — 4,353 ratings
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20

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3.99 avg rating — 3,988 ratings
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21

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4.15 avg rating — 461 ratings
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22

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4.01 avg rating — 6,219 ratings
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23

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4.23 avg rating — 2,391 ratings
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23

by
3.94 avg rating — 5,318 ratings
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25

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4.15 avg rating — 2,207 ratings
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26

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3.91 avg rating — 8,183 ratings
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27

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4.02 avg rating — 6,145 ratings
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28

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4.38 avg rating — 3,616 ratings
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29

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3.86 avg rating — 7,308 ratings
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30

by
3.97 avg rating — 1,806 ratings
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31

by
4.46 avg rating — 300 ratings
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32

by
4.06 avg rating — 6,127 ratings
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33

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4.11 avg rating — 7,882 ratings
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34

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4.55 avg rating — 118 ratings
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35

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4.17 avg rating — 9,781 ratings
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36

by
4.77 avg rating — 43 ratings
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37

by
4.09 avg rating — 7,855 ratings
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38

by
4.77 avg rating — 103 ratings
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39

by
4.42 avg rating — 1,969 ratings
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40

by
3.99 avg rating — 3,708 ratings
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41

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3.95 avg rating — 1,851 ratings
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42

by
3.42 avg rating — 7,413 ratings
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43

by
4.36 avg rating — 7,554 ratings
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44

by
3.84 avg rating — 1,023 ratings
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45

by
4.58 avg rating — 40 ratings
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46

by
3.97 avg rating — 5,540 ratings
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47

by
4.29 avg rating — 75 ratings
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48

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4.24 avg rating — 2,093 ratings
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49

by
4.09 avg rating — 2,202 ratings
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50

by
4.24 avg rating — 5,599 ratings
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51

by
4.38 avg rating — 2,438 ratings
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52

by
4.04 avg rating — 778 ratings
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53

by
4.07 avg rating — 649 ratings
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54

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4.16 avg rating — 2,351 ratings
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55

by
3.92 avg rating — 712 ratings
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56

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4.06 avg rating — 6,464 ratings
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57

by
4.34 avg rating — 1,241 ratings
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58

by
4.20 avg rating — 5,644 ratings
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59

by
4.04 avg rating — 8,939 ratings
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60

by
3.97 avg rating — 1,329 ratings
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61

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3.94 avg rating — 3,297 ratings
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62

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3.79 avg rating — 7,002 ratings
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63

by
4.21 avg rating — 71 ratings
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64

by
4.13 avg rating — 4,100 ratings
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65

by
4.18 avg rating — 909 ratings
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66

by
3.92 avg rating — 4,408 ratings
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67

by
4.08 avg rating — 3,429 ratings
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68

by
3.96 avg rating — 2,019 ratings
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69

by
4.13 avg rating — 600 ratings
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70

by
4.19 avg rating — 5,093 ratings
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71

by
4.03 avg rating — 61 ratings
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71

by
4.35 avg rating — 1,898 ratings
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73

by
4.11 avg rating — 279 ratings
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74

by
4.10 avg rating — 690 ratings
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75

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4.12 avg rating — 2,840 ratings
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76

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3.61 avg rating — 1,929 ratings
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77

by
3.73 avg rating — 7,490 ratings
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78

by
it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 29 ratings
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79

by
4.43 avg rating — 326 ratings
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80

by
4.01 avg rating — 1,678 ratings
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81

by
4.14 avg rating — 5,923 ratings
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82

by
4.30 avg rating — 2,790 ratings
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83

by
3.93 avg rating — 8,602 ratings
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84

by
4.06 avg rating — 4,626 ratings
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85

by
3.78 avg rating — 2,318 ratings
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86

by
4.26 avg rating — 239 ratings
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87

by
3.90 avg rating — 3,359 ratings
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88

by
4.24 avg rating — 461 ratings
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89

by
3.92 avg rating — 1,281 ratings
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90

by
4.14 avg rating — 7,895 ratings
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91

by
3.83 avg rating — 5,865 ratings
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92

by
4.04 avg rating — 4,691 ratings
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93

by
3.92 avg rating — 685 ratings
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94

by
3.93 avg rating — 4,001 ratings
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95

by
4.17 avg rating — 266 ratings
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96

by
4.06 avg rating — 2,262 ratings
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97

by
4.07 avg rating — 2,619 ratings
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98

by
3.85 avg rating — 8,301 ratings
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99

by
4.23 avg rating — 2,249 ratings
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100

by
3.93 avg rating — 592 ratings
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flag this list (?)
1,456 books · 1,010 voters · list created May 12th, 2010 by Tom Leonard (votes) .
247 likes · 
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Tom 350 books
0 friends
Barbara 2048 books
222 friends
Antoine 949 books
175 friends
Lana 1034 books
241 friends
Nancy 430 books
25 friends
Cheryl 7691 books
250 friends
Sam 559 books
93 friends
Ruby 4910 books
69 friends

More voters…


Comments Showing 1-35 of 35 (35 new)

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message 1: by Tom (new)

Tom Leonard Great lesser known kid's books that should be classics.


message 2: by Tom (new)

Tom Leonard vote for the lesser known greats.


message 3: by Parker (new)

Parker Jensen Sorry but in my opinion many of the books in the first 20 or so are not lesser known books. Also several others on the top 100 are not lesser known books. So many of them are on lists of the most popular and best children s books lists. But again that is my opinion


message 4: by Sarrah (new)

Sarrah Heidi? Betsy-Tacy? Wind in the Willows? I have to agree with Parker ... people either are insistent upon throwing their favorites on the list regardless or have been living under a rock.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads I am hesitant to remove books (unless something that is obviously not a children's book shows up), unless Tom wants me to do so.


message 6: by Becky (new)

Becky B I removed the duplicates of Dragon Howl and The Silly Potty Book. This is the second children's list I've seen someone just repeatedly adding those titles (often only 2 books apart in the list and only with 1 vote, so they must be doing this deliberately). I'll also report this on the GoodReads Librarians area.

Also, agree with Sarrah and Parker about many of the top 100. I've seen other lists that remove books that have over a certain # of ratings. Perhaps that could be done here.


message 7: by Linda (new)

Linda I agree that the point of this list is supposed to be "Books People haven't heard of" so I can't understand titles like Heidi, 101 Dalmations, Pippi Longstocking, and Beatrix Potter's stories appearing here.


message 8: by Diana (new)

Diana Working in a classroom, I can say that my students have not heard of Heidi or Pipi Longstocking. I do not think that our school even has copies of these books. They are now considered "old" and are purged from the system.


message 9: by Ruth (new)

Ruth There are so many that I have not read. I must rectify that.


message 10: by Mitchell (new)

Mitchell Not a bad list. But I would add a rule of no books over 10,000 ratings. I think that a sufficiently high number that most everything would fit under it. And I am comfortable adding this to this list and removing books.


message 11: by Mitchell (new)

Mitchell And it looks like the book must be 5 years old rule is being broken as well. Starting with 4 books by Linda Hale - these look pretty easy to fine - anything with less than 50 ratings is worth checking.


message 12: by Mitchell (new)

Mitchell Removing The Wind In The Willows, Guess How Much I Love You, Heidi, The Neverending Story, The Last Unicorn for being too well-known.

Removing The Insect Hotel, Thoughts to Die For, Lola Goes To Work, Activity Story Book Sunshine, Sunshine I'll Make You Smile, Sunshine and her Big Blarney Smile, Andy Roo for being too new.

Let me now what else I missed and I'll delete more.


message 13: by Tom (last edited Oct 25, 2013 02:58PM) (new)

Tom Leonard Here are more new books to remove...
one cat two cat new cat
Everwud the tree
mystic princesses and the whirlpool
what do you see when you look at me
the vikings apprentice
adventure pom
eliot and the pixie plot
chemistry the atom and elements
cellular biology
neverdark
fright flight
dingbat
son of hook
toby's tails
Pink is just a color
arlene the rebel queen
Rikk a mist
a place called perfect
the ghost shirt
foster fox
rona is moving
rosa SAT
Graham's magical changes
molly wonders how
be well be
wishingtree
pat a cake
olivia brave olive

there are more new books to delete, but this is as far down the list as I got.


message 14: by Mitchell (new)

Mitchell deleted Everwud the tree
mystic princesses and the whirlpool
what do you see when you look at me
the vikings apprentice
adventure pom
for being too new


message 15: by Mitchell (new)

Mitchell removed caps for sale, make way for ducklings, the borrowers, the boxcar children - for having too many ratings


message 16: by Lobstergirl (new)

Lobstergirl Diana wrote: "Working in a classroom, I can say that my students have not heard of Heidi or Pipi Longstocking. I do not think that our school even has copies of these books. They are now considered "old" and ..."

It's very, very sad those books are being purged from schools and libraries.

I can believe your students have not heard of these old classics. But adults have - and the list title is books most "people" haven't heard of.


message 17: by T.J. (new)

T.J. Leary Book no. 677 Mark and the Magic Apple Tree should be removed!


message 18: by Teresa (new)

Teresa Anderson Hello, I added my book, The Dalmatian Plantation, to the list and now it's not there. Any reason you can tell me why it was removed? I have been working on getting my reviews and ratings up and had friends, family and followers from facebook, etc. visiting and voting, etc. I had gotten to number 80 or 90. Very disappointing to not see it now.


message 19: by Tom (new)

Tom Leonard This list isn't for new books. Books published in 2010 or later will be removed. Author's please don't post your new book to promote it. It will just be removed.


message 20: by Anne (new)

Anne removed "Strega Nona" which had 50,000+ ratings.


message 21: by Shadowjac (last edited Nov 12, 2015 11:09AM) (new)

Shadowjac Removed My Fathers Dragon, which had 20,000+ ratings, and two Magic Treehouse books for 100,000 plus ratings.


message 22: by Shadowjac (new)

Shadowjac May I remove Ping?


message 23: by Sara (new)

Sara This list is useless as there are so many new books with one vote, by the writer. It needs to be thoroughly edited.


message 24: by Mitchell (new)

Mitchell I haven't checked into this list in quite some time and I'm pretty surprised at how good a shape it is in. The first 3 pages are not bad - sure there are a bunch of books over 10,000 but the list description doesn't preclude them. And I didn't spot anything new. And I found a lot of odd obscure children's books - which is what this list is for.


message 25: by Mitchell (new)

Mitchell Page five on the other hand. This could use quite a bit of librarian love. Almost every book on that page was from 2015. I deleted a bunch so hopefully it gets better as it goes on.


message 26: by Christopher (new)

Christopher Newton I'm interested that no series books are included. Is this a policy or is no one else still interested in the Oz books, the Freddy The Pig books, the Thornton Burgess animal stories and many more. They were all joys of my childhood and apparently little read today.


The Book Crusader Beverly Cleary is one of the most famous children's authors of all time. No book that she's written belongs on a list of unknown books.

Several others, including—but not limited to, The Great Brain, Encyclopedia Brown, Pippi Longstocking, Winnie the Pooh, and Brer Rabbit—also don't belong,


message 28: by Mitchell (new)

Mitchell Heidi wrote: "Green Eggs and Ham has 456, 849 ratings.

Where the Sidewalk ends has 1,010,425 ratings.

These two should be removed.

I believe they are numbers 525 and 526."


removed


message 29: by Ejayen (new)

Ejayen I thought books had to be fifty years old to be classics


message 30: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl I'd be more interested in this list if it were restricted to Under 4K ratings and Published Prior to 1969 (big changes in US society around then w/ the war in Vietnam, Summer of Love, etc.).

Does anyone know of a list with a narrower focus?

If not, does anyone want to help me create one?


message 31: by Vicki (new)

Vicki Currently, the top 8 books all have over 10,000 ratings!


message 32: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Vicki

I agree with you. But if you look at the
instructions at the top of the list, it says
that books with more than 40,000 ratings
will be removed.

So, the directions are very ambiguous.
The person who made the list should
have made the directions much more clear.
You could try contacting him yourself and
asking him about this. I know there are
people who have changed the directions
at the top of their lists.

I am not a GR librarian, so I am not
allowed to delete books and also I don't
know how to do it.

Heidi


message 33: by Heidi (new)

Heidi BTW, I checked that Tom Leonard's
home page--he started this list--and he has
not checked in since August 2016.


message 35: by Sally (last edited May 19, 2019 06:37AM) (new)

Sally Removed for > 40,000 ratings.

The Phantom Tollbooth

Blueberries for Sal


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