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Kids’ Holiday Gift Guide by Zodiac Sign

Wrap up your holiday shopping for the kids on your list with a little help from the stars. Minerva‘s editorial director Maria Russo has rounded up a list of recommended titles based on every child’s Zodiac sign.

ARIES (March 21–April 19): Pangolina

It’s no surprise that the legendary Dr. Jane Goodall is herself an Aries. As are the deeper themes in her picture book: the glory of independence; respect for the rights of all individuals, including animals; the excitement of new beginnings, when you least expect them. In this fictional tale, a baby pangolin is snatched from her blissful life in the forest by traffickers who intend to sell her for her valuable scales. To the rescue comes a little girl determined to set Pangolina free. It’s adorable, heartbreaking, and hopeful, and your little Aries will be enthralled.

TAURUS (April 20–May 20): My Indigo World

This gorgeous celebration of the color blue and the indigo plant is a winner of the NSTA-CBC Award and one the NYPL 2023 Best 100 Children’s Books. It has so much going on, from history to science to Korean culture, but above all, it is about beauty, and making beautiful, lasting things – which is the organizing principle of a Taurus life. Your little Taurus’s eyes will be glued to its gorgeous pages.

GEMINI (May 21–June 20): Papá’s Magical Water-Jug Clock

Little Jesús, the mischievous pint-sized hero of this 3-starred book that is already beloved by kids, librarians, and teachers coast to coast, really wants to be good, and help his Papá with his gardening job. It’s definitely not his fault that there is so much urgent business to take care of with the water jug and a small dog, some very old cats, and a flock of peacocks! Your little Gemini will totally relate to Jesús – get ready for repeat readings.

CANCER (June 21–July 22): The Longest Storm

This profound and lovely book really struck a chord with families and educators everywhere during the pandemic, and it really holds up still. It’s about a family stuck in their house for days because of a mysterious storm. They fight, they make up, they find a new way to be together and enjoy cozy yet rollicking family life – and then they get to go out into the sunshine. It will truly hit home with your sensitive, family-centered little Cancer.

LEO (July 23–August 22): Loujain Dreams of Sunflowers

What does it take to be a leader? How brave can I be? Loujain Al-Hathloul, the Saudi activist who fought for women’s right to drive in that country, then was imprisoned for three years, is the inspiration for this transcendent story co-written by her sister, Lina. It’s about a little girl named Loujain who wants to fly, like boys do, but she’s not allowed – until she fights for change. Your little Leo will thrill to this shining example of courage, leadership, and dreaming big. (P.S., yes, the real Loujain is a Leo.)

VIRGO (August 23–September 22): The Kitten Story

“Adopt don’t shop” is the Virgo-friendly subtext of this delightfully illustrated story about finding just the right pet for a family whose members all have their own strong opinions. Watch Mommy, Daddy, Rosie, and Tulip work out their many disagreements, and then do a world of good by bringing home a cat who’s been stuck in a cage at an animal shelter. Your little Virgo’s heart will sing at the practicality, cleverness, and good-hearted helpfulness on display here.

LIBRA (September 23–October 22): How Birds Sleep

This School Library Journal Best of the Year picture book pick is something quite rare: a nonfiction book packed with interesting facts from around the world, that is also downright beautiful to read aloud and to look at. How do birds sleep, anyway? Your curious little Libra will completely appreciate the care, detail, and perfect calibration of this nifty answer to that question.

SCORPIO (October 23–November 21): The Book from Far Away

In The Book From Far Away, a little boy is reading a book in a tree when he witnesses a family of aliens descending from a spaceship for a picnic, with games, treats, and – is that an alien book they’ve got? Yes it is, and the two book-loving children connect across a cosmic divide. With gorgeously surreal art wordlessly telling this brilliantly imaginative story, need we say more? Your little Scorpio craves just this kind of wondrous adventure.

SAGITTARIUS (November 22–December 21): Luna Ranchera

Luna and Ranchera are a doggie mother-daughter singing act beloved the world over – but long ago, Luna was a homeless dog, forced to poach fish from a rancher’s river to feed her hungry pups. Even after finding fame and fortune, though, Luna and Ranchera never forget where they came from. Your little Sagittarius will be riveted by this rags-to-riches tale of two big-hearted free spirits who still honor the humble pueblo they came from.

CAPRICORN (December 22–January 19): City Under the City

Bix lives in a world where kids read only on screens, and don’t do anything for themselves – the Eyes are always there to help. But curious Bix doesn’t want help! One day she follows a strange tiny creature down a hole and discovers a place that looks a lot like our world today … full of books that teach her how to think for herself. She goes back home and leads a righteous revolt. Your little Capricorn will be enthralled by this adventurous picture book about the power of books and thinking for yourself. 

AQUARIUS (January 20–February 18): The Museum of Nothing

Did you know that “nothing” is always really something? Oona and Otto discover this mind-blowing truth one day when they stumble on the Museum of Nothing, where they experience high-concept exhibits like the Zero Room, with mathematical nothings from all over the world, and the Hall of Holes, boasting everything from donut holes to a black hole. This book is an adorably sophisticated journey your brainy little Aquarius will completely appreciate.

PISCES (February 19–March 20): Some Do, Some Don’t

As deep as it is beautiful, this picture book about all the ways people live in families – and sometimes, outside of families – casts a mysterious spell. With art depicting the jabiru, a large bird native to Central and South America, and back matter that offers accessible information about this fascinating creature, this is a book to open minds and foster emotional intelligence. Your sensitive little Pisces will nod along to this one, basking in its gentle, spiritual glow.

For more holiday magic, check out our Cool Kindness Kit and our Hippo Holidays Guide.