BFFs. Besties. Frenemies. Why do kids have so many names for friends? Maybe it’s because after family, your kiddos’ pals are the greatest force in their lives. It starts with toddler play dates set up by mom, and before you know it they’re inviting ten kids over for an all-night movie marathon. Flip through the album for 12 books that celebrate the joys and challenges of friendship.

Frog and Toad

Age: 3-6

It's astonishing what a full world Arnold Lobel was able to create using simple vocabulary and short sentences in his tales about the amphibious odd couple. Each of the four books contains six stories starring dapper Frog and pessimistic Toad as they experience the quotidian (planting a garden, nursing a cold) and the exciting (climbing a mountain, scaring the stuffing out of each other with spooky stories). The pair model caring, humor, and compromise (as well as frustration, envy, and annoyance) through their realistic feelings and conversations.

Available at harpercollins.com, $11.99.

Do you have a favorite book about friendship? Tell us about it the comments below. 

—Emma Bland Smith