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10 wordless books

Genre: Art, Illustration
Age group: 0-2, 3-5

Silence is golden in these enchanting wordless picture books.

Enjoy our selection of new and classic stories that are perfect for sharing in any language.

Best picture books without words

Jan Ormerod Sunshine

A small ray of sunshine wakes a little girl from her sleep. She moves through the familiar routine of early morning; waking her parents, making breakfast, brushing her teeth and getting ready to leave the house. The quietness of the girl and her dad as they sleepily head down to the kitchen, and the more active scenes of mum and dad rushing around getting dressed are equally delightful, showing the many sides of family life. In this wordless book, Ormerod's nostalgic illustrations provide a springboard for plenty of extra discussion about our simple, day-to-day experiences.

Leo Timmers Monkey on the Run

Leaping from his dad’s banana-shaped sidecar, monkey leaves his dad stuck in traffic, and hops over the many bizarre and unusual vehicles that make up this book. There are so many things to spot and talk about in this wordless book; children will love pointing out all the quirky things going on. Look out for Carrot King fast-food truck, serving carrot burgers, carrot fries and even a carrot drink, and the bull on the run from the police, with all his loot on his horns. All while monkey gets caught up in the chaos – will he ever get back to his dad and make it home?

Alison Jay Bee and Me

When a bumblebee flies into the open window of a bookish girl's apartment, an unexpected, but delightful friendship is born. The girl and the bee play, eat, and grow together. But when bee longs to return to work in her natural habitat, their real journey begins. The tale told in this wordless book has a dreamlike quality. The rich illustrations, presented through a blend of storyboards and full-page spreads give structure to a wonderful celebration of ecology, and the role even the youngest children can play in conservation.

Aaron Becker Journey

When a little girl uses a red crayon to draw a door on her bedroom wall, she finds that it opens into a magical, fantasy world of adventure. The girl can control things to a certain extent by what she draws – when she needs a boat a quick sketch produces one, and when she needs to fly, she draws a flying carpet. With pages full of impressive detail, this wordless book is both enchanting and imaginative, and makes the reader feel as though anything is possible.

Giovanna Zoboli Mariachiara Di Giorgio Professional Crocodile

Teeth brushed? Check. Tie chosen? Check. Hat? Check. And so begins the day in the life of a professional crocodile. With a slightly surreal twist, this picture book is witty and imaginative and each time you read it, you’ll see something new. At its simplest level it tells the story of a daily commute, and as a small person why shouldn’t a crocodile run some errands and travel to work like everyone else? There is endless detail for the curious reader to pore over – look out for the giraffe on the tube in his scarf and glasses, or the lion buying meat at the butchers. An absolute delight for all ages and a Bookbug Team favourite!

David Wiesner Flotsam

When a curious boy takes the film from a washed up underwater camera to be developed, he can't hide his astonishment at the secret world documented within the camera. Photographs reveal surreal underwater scenes, with mysterious clockwork fish, alien life forms and a pretty amazing pufferfish hot air balloon! Wiesner's stunning watercolour illustrations are vivid and intricate, with new details for children to spot with every read. This really is a masterclass in how wordless picture books have the power to tell a thousand different stories, and prompt infinite conversations, without saying a single word.

Quentin Blake Clown

Some wordless picture books stand out above others because of their visual narrative - this is certainly the case in this classic tale of a rejected clown who demonstrates resilience and perseverance in the pursuit of happiness. You can't help but fall in love with Blake's playful, little character, whose facial expressions and energy on the page help bring his story to life. Watching the narrative unfold is like watching a silent movie; there are emotional ups and downs, snatches of slapstick humour and even moments of peril​ to keep readers on their toes! A wonderfully clever and fun story to share with little ones.

Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick Owl Bat Bat Owl

An owl family are settling down for the night on their branch when a bat family moves in underneath! The big owl isn’t too happy about this but when a storm begins and all the wee owls and bats get blown from the tree it is up to the adults to work together to get them back. With wry humour and a sweet, gentle message, this is a lovely wordless book to introduce the idea of conflict and talk about how to resolve it. The illustrations clearly tell the story through the expressions of both creatures, especially the inquisitive little owl who wants to make friends with a bat, and it is perfect for little ones who are just beginning to understand emotions.

Bernado Carvalho Follow the Firefly/Run Rabbit Run

There's so much fun and chatter to be had around this imaginative wordless picture book. Firstly, little ones can follow the adventures of an adorable firefly as it navigates its way through the jungle on the lookout for a flashing light. Firefly might find what she's looking for, but the story doesn't quite end there! The final page reveals the beginning of a brand new story featuring an escapee rabbit, and little readers are encouraged to flip the book over and follow rabbit on his adventure. Bright, colourful, playful and hugely engaging for children – and grown-ups – of all ages.

Suzy Lee Lines

If you were small enough, what would it be like to skate across the clean white pages of a book? Suzy Lee’s character does just that in this book and the effect is magical. Telling a story without words, Lines shows how much power a pencil has in creating a whole world inside some pages with just a few sketches and a splash of colour. Children will love that the character inhabits the literal pages of the book and it will hopefully encourage them to put their own marks to paper and create their very own stories.