Meet the Experts Behind the 50 Best Books for 5- and 6-Year-Olds List

by the Brightly Editors

  • Each book on our list of the 50 Best Books for 5- and 6-Year-Olds was carefully selected by a group of experts. You can learn more about these passionate children’s literature experts below.

  • Mary Brown

    Mary Brown is the owner of Books, Bytes & Beyond, a children’s specialty book business located in Glen Rock, New Jersey. She has been involved with children’s literature for over twenty-five years as a bookseller and educational consultant. With its focus on a personalized approach to educating children, Books, Bytes & Beyond has established a reputation for helping educators and parents find the right book to help children develop a love of reading that can last a lifetime.

    You may have tangible wealth untold;
    Caskets of jewels and coffers of gold.
    Richer than I you can never be —
    I had a Mother who read to me.”
    from “The Reading Mother,” by Strickland Gillilan

  • Melissa Taylor

    Melissa Taylor, MA, is a teacher, mama, and writer from Colorado. Her goal in childhood was to read every book in the children’s section of the library. She loves (in no particular order) children’s books, her Kindle, Pinterest, and knitting rectangles. An education expert, she’s written for many publications, including Parenting.comUSA Today Health, and Scholastic Parent and Child.

    “Books are many things: lullabies for the weary, ointment for the wounded, armor for the fearful and nests for those in need of a home.”
    from The Tender Moments of Saffron Silk, by Glenda Millard

  • Namrata Tripathi

    Namrata Tripathi is Editorial Director at Dial Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Penguin Random House. She acquires and edits picture books, middle grade, and young adult novels. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and daughter, a preschooler who loves going to the office with her mother because “that’s where Mama’s friends give me books!”

    “There are perhaps no days of our childhood we lived so fully as those we spent with a favorite book.”
    –Marcel Proust

  • Lisa Von Drasek

    Lisa Von Drasek is the Curator of the Children’s Literature Research Collections. The CLRC is an internationally recognized resource in the field of children’s literature, and includes the renowned Kerlan Collection of Children’s Literature. Lisa reviews children’s books for The New York Times and Shelf Awareness, and blogs at EarlyWord: The Librarian/Publisher Connection. She has served as a juror on The New York Times Best Illustrated, the Newbery Committee, The Ezra Jack Keats Award, Trudi Birger Prize (Jerusalem Book Fair), National Book Awards for Young People’s Literature, and American Library Association’s Notable Children’s Books.

    The only wrong way to read is to not read at all.”