5 Animal-Centric Books for Animal-Loving Readers

Who doesn’t love a good listicle? I was (and still am) an animal nut as a kid. I also enjoyed reading, so it makes sense that these two loves overlapped. What’s more, is that though I enjoy reading, I go with long dry-spells in which I just can’t find something that interests me. This certainly happened during my childhood. I was picky… I wouldn’t just pick up anything and read it. So, it was always nice when I stumbled upon an author I enjoyed and could read several books in a row.

  1. The Black Stallion by Walter Farley.
    I discovered this book after staring up at a shelf in my older brother’s room one day. The colorful dust jacket was faded and torn, but I could see a horse on the spine. A horse! I liked horses, so I asked Mom what it was, and she informed me it was one of my dad’s old books. I climbed, monkey like, on the side of my brother’s bunk beds and grabbed the book. Good choice, young me.
  2. The Island Stallion by Walter Farley.
    Similar to The Black Stallion, but still rather different!
  3. Big Red, by Jim Kjelgaard.
    Another one of my dad’s childhood books. A book about dogs! (Also, the author has a totally awesome last name!) Truthfully, I don’t remember this one as well as I remembered The Black Stallion, but I know I enjoyed it when I read it.
  4. Redwall, by Brian Jacques.
    We are now exiting the “realism” section of the list =D
    Redwall, and the rest of the series, are a must-have for late elementary and middle school readers, especially those who love fantasy and animals. I consumed these books. I own all of them, still, and I’m eager to share them with my kiddos. I think Redwall might be the next non-Laura Ingalls book I read aloud…
  5. Hank the Cowdog, by John R. Erickson.
    Fair warning, Hank the Cowdog is a gigantic series that gets super repetitive. That being said, these books are humorous, especially if you own dogs or have ever spent a lot of time around idiot cattle dogs. I think I understood more of the jokes than my kids as we listened to the audio book, but they liked it, too. This one is better for younger readers–kids getting into late-middle school might be bored.

I know I missed many great books! Please add to the list in the comments!

~ Lee


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