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The best kids' books about NYC

We've rounded up great kids' books about NYC that little urbanites will need to borrow from the library immediately

Written by
Danielle Valente

The best kids' books about NYC prove that even the youngest bibliophiles can't resist Gotham's literary charm! The five boroughs are home to fantastic libraries for kids, stellar book clubs for kids and boundless inspiration for authors (and junior authors who are penning their first novels in school).

There's something magical about this metropolis that enamors readers, writers and anyone who appreciates a good story. Our favorite kids' books about NYC—Eloise, Knuffle Bunny, The Secret Subway, to name a few—are all worthy of a spot on your children's wishlist and prove that this East Coast city has earned the title of greatest city in the world.

Make your way to the coolest bookstores for kids and help your little urbanites find their next favorite picture book. 

Best kids' books about NYC

1. Eloise

Eloise is a "rawther" precocious little New Yorker who is fortunate enough to call The Plaza Hotel her home Naturally, such a famed Upper East Side institution is bound to experience a little turmoil when this youngster runs loose throughout the halls and meddles in visitors' affairs. You'd certainly be remiss to pass on Eloise's antics (, $12)! 

2. Larry Gets Lost in New York City

We can't blame this little pup for feeling a bit overwhelmed by NYC's subway system. In fact, encountering public transportation issues is essentially part of the urban hazing process, and Larry definitely gets his taste of train trouble. After he is separated from his family while underground, Larry embarks on an adventure throughout the five boroughs and visits some of NYC most famed attractions—Radio City, Coney Island—along the way (, $17). 


3. Up in the Leaves: The True Story of the Central Park Treehouses

When young Bob Redman searched for a respite from the hustle and bustle of NYC, he turned to Central Park's tranquil green space. But it wasn't long before he attempted to make the city's communal backyard his own. Bob began to build tree houses, which became more and more intricate with each new secret hiding spot, and kept park workers on their toes. Though his creations were destroyed and his cover was blown, this real-life story has an ending you won't be able to resist (, $11)

4. My New York

Explore the wonders of NYC through the eyes of a little girl who anxiously awaits her friend's arrival from the Midwest. This tour of the Big Apple in paperback form will delight kiddies thanks pop-out pages donned with NYC's coolest attractions (amazon, $20). 


5. Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale

Mo Willems' infectious tale follows a little girl and her father on their trip to a Brooklyn laundromat. All is fine and dandy...until she realizes she's left her stuffed bunny behind. Will this Park Slope pop be able to rescue somebunny special (, $10)

6. Don't Let The Pigeon Drive the Bus 

Much like the millions of people who use NYC's mass transit system, Mo Willems' picture book allows little ones to choose their own adventure when a pigeon steps in for a city bus driver. Buckle up (, $12)


7. Pet of the Met

Don Freeman, the mastermind behind the beloved children's tale Corduroy, often used NYC as his muse (which you can experience at MCNY's new exhibit). In his super-sweet NYC story, a young mouse serves as a page-turner at The Met...and is rather turned off by the cat that frequents the venue. However, something changes during an extra magical performance of The Magic Flute (, $8)! 

8. Sleepover at the Museum 

A night at the Museum of Natural History has been an inspiration for many a tale, and this time, Karen LeFrak's newly released picture book provides another glimpse at what happens on the Upper West Side when the lights go out (, $13)


9. The Secret Subway

Take a step back in time with this quirky picture book and learn how the NYC subway came to be (, $13). 

10. Good Night, New York City

Tuck the kids in and say "night, night" to all of your favorite NYC destinations: the Brooklyn Bridge, Bronx Zoo, Empire State Building and more (, $9). 

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