Books for Autumn

fall maple tree

I love autumn! I know I say this about each and every season but autumn is just so... wonderful. 

We are a reading homeschool family regardless of the season (ie: reading is a priority all year round) but there is something about the arrival of fall that sends us back to the books in earnest.

Fall is the perfect time to hit the couch again, rather than the beach chair or picnic blanket, and snuggle together for a good read. We enjoy a variety of books all year but I especially appreciate celebrating the seasons with seasonal reading.

yellow maple leaf

Over the years I've kept an ongoing list of fall (and spring, summer, holiday & winter) themed books that we have enjoyed reading together. Below are a few favorites from that list. Some of these books have craft ideas and activities. A couple give passing mention to halloween activities which I know are objectionable for some families (just a heads up).

Autumn Reads

Picture Books & Early Readers

It's Fall (Celebrate the Seasons) It's Fall

Dappled Apples Dappled Apples

Lionel in the Fall: Level 3 (Easy-to-Read, Puffin) Lionel in the Fall: Level 3

Looking for Loons Looking for Loons Feels like Maine

In the Leaves In the Leaves Introduces easy Chinese characters.

Pumpkins Pumpkins Interesting reference type book with cool photography.

Flower Fairies of the Autumn Celebration (Flower Fairies) Flower Fairies of the Autumn Celebration The illustrations are amazing, the poetry so-so but my children just LOVE fairies anything.

Wild Child Wild Child Perhaps our favorite fall picture/poetry book of all time.

Short Story & Chapter Books

A Pioneer Thanksgiving: A Story of Harvest Celebrations in 1841 A Pioneer Thanksgiving: A Story of Harvest Celebrations in 1841 Thanksgiving story set in Canada or Northern United States. Canadian Thanksgiving is in October (just 2 days ago in fact) and is definitely a fall celebration whereas US Thanksgiving feels like "the holidays" to me, with Christmas decorations being put up etc..

Autumn Story (Brambly Hedge) Autumn Story My children love the Brambly Hedge series of books. All are very seasonal and richly illustrated.

Autumn Moon (Seasons of the Moon) Autumn Moon Great chapter book by the renowned naturalist Jean Craigehead George about autumn in three geographic regions in the United States, ie: it's not just about leaves in New England (smile).

Here's two more chapter books that aren't exactly fall themed but seem perfect to read this time of year.

The Witch of Blackbird Pond The Witch of Blackbird Pond The kids and I listened to this while driving on our recent trip to Nova Scotia. The story spans a whole year but feels just right for fall.

Charlotte's Web Charlotte's Web One of the only chapter books I've read twice to my children, with one of my favorite phrases, "the glory of everything".

maple tree colors

Tree Reads

What is autumn without tree books? Spring is when I naturally gravitate to garden and flower books but fall is all about trees. Especially here in Maine with the gorgeous show of color we enjoy. Scarlet maple, golden birch and bronze oak... oh the colors. Simply magnificent.

Our Apple Tree Our Apple Tree

Have You Seen Trees Have You Seen Trees

Woody, Hazel and Little Pip Woody, Hazel and Little Pip Lovely, lovely, lovely.

Johnny AppleseedJohnny Appleseed Poetry, history, biography.

The Tree The Tree

Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf

And have you seen Ginny's Forest and Tree Study resources at her blog Small Things? Go check it out.

In the next week I have two (count 'em - two!) book/reading related posts coming your way. I'm excited to share how our family stocks the bookshelves (on a budget) with quality books and how we've taught our children to read and appreciate the wonders of the written and illustrated word. Oh... this will be fun!

What fall books do you recommend? Adult fiction and non-fiction ideas welcomed also.

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  • Claudia

    Claudia on Oct. 13, 2010, 10:47 a.m.

    What a great list! I'm logging into our library database right now to see if they carry any of these great looking titles. I love seasonally themed books, but have such a hard time sourcing them on my own. Thanks Renee!


  • Courtney R Beard

    Courtney R Beard on Oct. 13, 2010, 12:35 p.m.

    Love it! Another fallworthy tree book is The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein. It still makes me weepy as an adult. Enjoy your Autumn, we are!


  • Jen

    Jen on Oct. 13, 2010, 12:44 p.m.

    Beautiful pics! Thanks for the reading list! I don't have any fall books necessarily but I just finished Her Daughter's Dream by Francine Rivers and it was excellent (sequel to Her Mother's Hope).


  • Nicole

    Nicole on Oct. 13, 2010, 2:13 p.m.

    Love this post! We also are a family of readers and reading and fall just go naturally together. Fall is about harvesting and planning for the winter months ahead, so with that in mind, we love A pioneer story by Barbara Greenwood; Pioneer Girl by Maryanne Caswell; Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder. For adult non-fiction how about Roughing it in the Bush by Susanna Moodie? Plus two more favorites, not really about fall but seem to fit, The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett and Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell. By the way, The Witch of Blackbird Pond is one of our all time favorites!


    • renee

      renee on Oct. 14, 2010, 11:58 p.m.

      Thank you Nicole for this great list. We've read many of these but I haven't heard of Roughing it in the Bush or Pioneer Girl. We went through a pioneer phase a few years back. Celine was really into it, not so much now.


  • daffodil lane

    daffodil lane on Oct. 13, 2010, 2:16 p.m.

    Great list. We have a couple of them on our shelves already, but you've inpired me to put in some library requests! I love pulling all the fall themed books into a basket by the fireplace for quick-grabbing.


  • Rana

    Rana on Oct. 14, 2010, 1:25 a.m.

    Some of these we have read and some I'm going to add to our library list. I would also have to say the Little House books. We have been enjoying reading through the series together.


    • renee

      renee on Oct. 14, 2010, 1:19 p.m.

      Yes! Of course the Little House books are perfect for fall also. I read the series a few years ago to the kiddos. Maybe it's time to revisit them. The Long winter those is definitely best read in January or February. Helps give perspective to our "grueling" winter season.


  • Emily

    Emily on Oct. 14, 2010, 2:29 a.m.

    Moominvalley in November, if you like the Moomin books (we do). Thank you for the list, I requested several of them from our library. Judging from the request number (11 in one instance) we are the only homeschool family to have waited this long to request seasonal books. :>)


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