Ok I love this topic. I love literature of all kinds and children's books hold a very special place in my life. I'll still listen to them at work sometimes if the world gets a little too heavy and dark. So that being said, my favorite children's books of all time are...
1 "The mysterious benedict society" by Trenton Lee Stewart
This is one of my favorite books period it's just that good. A group of gifted orphans are recruited to infiltrate a school being used as a cover for a soon to be global, mind control scheme by means of tv and radio.
There are so many things I love about this, but some of the major reasons are.
This book is not dumbed down nor does it talk down to kids. The author treats the reader like an equal, expecting him to think and actually figure stuff out, Rather than spoon feeding everything to them.
The struggles that must be overcome, and thus the character development displayed, are realistic. Their are no Mary Sues in this book! Every character, though very gifted (photographic memory, genius IQ etc) has problems that they must hurdle so as not to let down their teammates and the whole world.
The characters give an example of overcoming things like. Denying yourself that which you want most in life because doing so would harm others, Overcoming headstrong independence so as to work better as a team to actually get the goal done. Learning that you cannot allow fear of potential failure to keep you from acting.
Other reasons I love this book it makes vivid concepts like:
Propaganda through media and the need to believe truth no matter the lies.
How it is necessary to work to defeat the the evil inside before you can hope to combat the evil of society.
Overall this book is an absolute gem. They made a Disney plus show of it recently. DON'T WATCH IT! Absolute trash compared to the book.
2 The Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis
Not much to say here, we all know it, we all love it. It's a compelling story with great meaning. Dont be afraid to use the Chronicles of Narnia as an example when addressing spiritual topics with your kids. Need an example of how we cant sanctify ourselves, talk about Eustice being unable to scratch away and change himself from being a dragon, Aslan had to do it. That Kind of thing.
3 Alice in wonderland and Through the looking glass by Lewis Carrol
Two of my favorite books, these nonsense works get really bad treatment from the world, being a favorite target to be twisted into something sinister and evil. Well they're not! In fact the whole point is that they're innocent.
These Two works are designed to provoke creative out of the box imagination and that wonderful feeling of just being a kid.
Don't be reticent to read these because of what the world has tried to turn them into or what the world claims they are about.
Simply enjoyable not designed to be overthought. Just relax and enjoy an innocent ride!
I'll probably add to this list.