Your Kid’s Favourite Read 2023: Chapter Books

Posted on December 1, 2023

Each year, we ask the Your Kid’s Next Read community to share their young readers’ favourite reads of the previous 12 months.

Last year, we came up with one epic ‘Best Books of 2022’ list (see it here), but this year the group has grown in size by thousands again, so I’ve decided to share multiple lists of ‘favourite reads’ in different categories: picture books, early chapter books (5-7), junior fiction (6-9), middle grade (10-13) and young adult (14+).

This time, it’s early chapter books for kids aged 5-7 years old. Those little books that have a huge impact on beginner readers.

Some of these books were published in 2023, some were not. One of the joys of a community like Your Kid’s Next Read is the ability for members to curate and create book lists that stretch way back through reading experiences, meaning any request or query results in a deep and thoughtful TBR pile on just about any subject.

Stand by also for Team YKNR’s favourite reads in 2023, coming soon.

These lists are great starting points when you’re looking for the next great read for your kid/s. Click the title to find out more about each book*.

PS: You might need a cup of tea for this one…


Your Kid’s Favourite Read 2023: Chapter Books

As nominated by the members of the Your Kid’s Next Read community. For early readers aged 5-7.



Best chapter books 2023Billie B. Brown (series) by Sally Rippin

School of Monsters (series) by Sally Rippin (art by Chris Kennett)

Elephant and Piggie (series) by Mo Willems


Best chapter books 2023Dog Man (series) by Dav Pilkey

The Bad Guys by Aaron Blabey

(“My five year old is loving this series at the moment!” – Amy)



Best chapter books 2023Hey Jack (series) by Sally Rippin

Babysitters Little Sister (series) by Ann Martin and Katy Farina

Smarty Pup (series) by Anh Do (ill. by Anton Emdin)

Hot Dog (series) by Anh Do (ill. by Dan McGuiness)


Best chapter books 2023The Wish Sisters (series) by Allison Rushby (ill. by Karen Blair)

Ninja Kid (series) by Anh Do (ill. by Jeremy Ley)

Lulu Bell (series) by Belinda Murrell (ill. by Serena Geddes)

Zac Power (series) by H. I. Larry (ill. by Ash Oswald)


Best chapter books 2023Aussie Kids (series) by various authors and illustrators

Isadora Moon (series) by Harriet Muncaster

Sadie (series) by Lana Spasevski (art by Joanie Stone)

Zoey and Sassafras (series) by Asia Citro (ill. by Marion Lindsay)


Best chapter books 2023Dragon Masters (series) by Tracey West

(“...were the big hook to start reading chapter books for my then 7yo.” – Jen)

Puppy Place (series) by Ellen Miles

Castronauts (series) by Drew Brockington


Best chapter books 2023Monsties (series) by Zanni Louise and Kyla May

Baloney and Friends (series) by Greg Pizzoli

Ella and Owen (series) by Jaden Kent (ill. by Iryna Bodnaruk)

The Notebook of Doom (series) by Troy Cummings


Best chapter books 2023Narwhal and Jelly (series) by Ben Clanton

The Wild Life (series) by Laura Bunting and Philip Bunting

Meet Ella (series) by Rebecca McRitchie (ill. by Danielle McDonald)

Friendly Bee (series) by Sean Avery


Best chapter books 2023Ollie and Bea (series) by Renee Treml

The Adventures of Sophie Mouse (series) by Poppy Green (ill. by Jennfer A. Bell)

Etta and the Octopus by Zana Fraillon (ill. by Andrew Joyner)

Owl Diaries (series) by Rebecca Elliott


Best chapter books 2023Rabbit & Bear (series) by Julian Gough (ill. by Jim Field)

Billy and the Mini Monsters (series) by Zanna Davidson (ill. by Melanie Williamson)

Squishy McFluff (series) by Pip Jones

Unicorn Diaries (series) by Rebecca Elliott


Best chapter books 2023The Isabelle Stories (series) by Jane Godwin (ill. by Robin Cowcher)

Polly and Buster (series) by Sally Rippin

Itty Bitty Kitty (series) by Maddy Mara (ill. by Noemie Gionet Landry)

Fish Kid (series) by Kylie Howarth


Best chapter books 2023Juliet Nearly A Vet (series) by Rebecca Jonson (ill. by Kyla May)

What Zola Did (series) by Melina Marchetta*

Ella Diaries (series) by Meredith Costain (ill. by Danielle McDonald)

Princess in Black (series) by Shannon Hale, Dean Hale (ill. by LeUyen Pham)


Best chapter books 2023School of Fish (series) by Louis Shea

The Naughtiest Unicorn (series) by Pip Bird (ill. by David O’Connell)

Captain Underpants (series) by Dav Pilkey

Cat Kid Comic Club (series) by Dav Pilkey


To The IceTo The Ice by Thomas Tidholm (ill. Anna-Clara Tidholm)

My 5 year old has loved TO THE ICE as shared read-aloud stories. They’re a mix between a picture book and early chapter book (more words than an early reader but colour illustrations).” – Andy

Mighty Robot (series) by Dav Pilkey (ill. by Dan Santat)


Best chapter books 2023Willa and Woof (series) by Jacqueline Harvey

Ivy and Bean (series) by Annie Barrow (ill. by Sophie Blackall)

Dragon Girls (series) by Maddy Mara

Pearl And Friends (series) by Sally Odgers (ill. by Adele K. Thomas)


Best chapter books 2023Monty’s Island (series) by Emily Rodda (ill. by Lucinda Gifford)

Fartboy (series) by Adam Wallace (ill. by James Hart)

The Pet Keeper Fairies (series) by Daisy Meadows (ill. by Georgie Ripper)

Cat & Cat Adventures (series) by Susie Yi


Best chapter books 2023Squidge Dibley (series) by Mick Elliott

My seven year old has recently been quite obsessed.” – Anna

Milly-Molly-Mandy (series) by Joyce Lankester Brisley

Mango and Bambang (series) by Polly Faber and Clare Vulliamy


Best chapter books 2023How To Make A Pet Monster (series) by Lili Wilkinson (ill. by Dustin Spence)

Fairy Forest School (series) by Olivia Brook

The Secret Explorers (series) by DK

Real Pigeons (series) by Andrew McDonald (ill. by Ben Wood)


Best chapter books 2023Little Ash (series) by Ash Barty, Jasmin McGaughey (ill. by Jade Goodwin)

Secret Coders (series) by Gene Luen Yang and Mike Holmes

Diary of a Minecraft Zombie (series) by Zack Zombie

The Magic School Bus (series) by Joanna Cole (ill. by Bruce Degen)


Best chapter books 2023Hello Twigs (series) by Andrew McDonald and Ben Wood

National Geographic Kids Weird But True (series)

Daisy Dreamer (series) by Holly Anna (ill. by Genevieve Santos)

Press Start (series) by Thomas Flintham


Best chapter books 2023Luma and the Pet Dragon (series) by Leah Mohammed

We read these together with Ms 7 reading some aloud.” – Aileen

Pig The Pug (series) by Aaron Blabey

Tashi (series) by Kim Gamble and Anna Fienberg


Best chapter books 2023The Tales of Mr Walker by Jess Black (ill. by Sara Acton)

Pow Pow Pig (series) by Anh Do (ill. by Peter Cheong)

The Littlest Penguin and the Phillip Island Penguin Parade by Jedda Robaard

Ella and Olivia (series) by Yvette Poshoglian and Danielle McDonald


Best chapter books 2023I Hero (series) by Steve Skidmore and Steve Barlow

A less-wordy type of choose-your-own-adventure books. Mr 7 says they are better than CYOA books because they only have one successful path through the story – he spends hours trying to make the correct series of choices to find it!”Anna

Magic Tree House (series) by Mary Pope Osborne (ill. by Salvatore Murdocca)


You might also like

Your Kid’s Favourite Read 2023: Junior Fiction

Your Kid’s Favourite Read 2023: Picture Books


*This post contains affiliate links. See contact page for details


A. L. Tait The First Summer of Callie McGeeAre you new here? Welcome to my blog! I’m Allison Tait, aka A.L. Tait, and I’m the author of middle-grade series, The Mapmaker Chronicles, The Ateban Cipher, and the Maven & Reeve Mysteries. My latest novel THE FIRST SUMMER OF CALLIE McGEE is out now. You can find out more about me here, and more about my books here.

If you’re looking for book recommendations for young readers, join the Your Kid’s Next Read Facebook community, tune in to the Your Kid’s Next Read podcast and sign up for the Your Kid’s Next Read newsletter


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