It wouldn’t be a holiday without some toys to unwrap. But if you’re looking for a special gift your kids will remember for years to come, you can’t go wrong with a book set. Perfect for those long days of winter break when it’s too cold to go outside, gifting kids with a new series to sink their teeth into will help stave off winter boredom. And not only do book sets look great on a bookshelf, your child will get the same satisfaction racing through all the books in a series that you do after binging a series on Netflix. We asked parents and literary experts for their top book set picks for kids of all ages to help make holiday shopping this year a snap. Many come in snazzy packaging, like a boxed set or vintage tin. Browse our full book set collection at the Scholastic Store.
Even kids who aren’t quite ready to tackle Harry Potter on their own will love a set of matching books for the holidays. Pick a set that speaks to their current interests to encourage reading or choose one that reminds you of your own childhood.
Eric Carle Six Classic Board Books Box Set Marisa Iallonardo, mom to a 4-year-old, says this classic set would be a gift for both her and her child. “One of my son’s very first favorite books was Brown, Bear, Brown Bear, so Eric Carle holds a special place in our hearts. I love that this collection has some favorites my son hasn’t read yet – and that I’m sure he would love.”
Must-Read Classics in Spanish Collection "Picture books where we can immerse children in the Spanish language are great for family reading time, especially if your household is multigenerational and/or multi-lingual," says Scholastic librarian Deimosa Webber-Bey. With a whopping 15 titles, including fairy tale classics in bilingual format, plus a potpourri of selections from popular series and singular bestsellers like Un Caso Grave de Rayas (A Bad Case of Stripes), this collection is a fantastic value.
Adventures in Lego City: Reader Box Set Toys and shows kids love can be a great inspiration when making selections for young readers. “My 4-year-old has just discovered the joy of Legos – and will spend hours building things – so this collection of books is spot on for his interests these days,” says Iallonardo.
Paw Patrol Phonics Box Set If your child shows an interest in reading, encourage it with a phonics set themed to their favorite cartoon character. “My 4-year-old is obsessed with words and letters lately – he asks us to write what he wants to say on cards and pictures he’s drawing so he can copy the words,” explains Iallonardo. “And since his love for Paw Patrol knows no bounds, this collection is ideal for him right now.”
Early readers will get a thrill of accomplishment knowing they’ve finished all the books in a beloved series. Pick a main character your child can relate to and get ready watch him fall in love with reading.
Pete the Cat Phonics Book Set Don’t overlook this simple character when book browsing for the holidays. “Pete the Cat is an all-time favorite with his cool attitude and fun lessons,” says mom Jamie Beth Cohen. These books are a top pick for her six-year-old.
The Magic School Bus Value Pack This magical bus is inspiring a new generation. “The Magic School Bus books were some of my favorites when I was a kid, and I love getting to read them with my daughter,” says Ashley Austrew, mom of a 7-year-old. “They inspire her to love science, and who doesn’t day dream of having a teacher like Ms. Frizzle?”
Fly Guy Presents: Nonfiction Bundle Kids who devour the adventures of Fly Guy and Buzz will be thrilled to see them take off on fact-based adventures. “My six-year-old loves Fly Guy and loves learning, so the non-fiction Fly Guy Box would be great for him!” says Jamie Beth Cohen.
Junie B. Jones Books in a Bus “The Junie B. Jones Series was one of the first things my daughter was able to read on her own,” says Ashley Austrew. “She loves Junie’s bold attitude and how the kids in the books are dealing with some of the exact things she’s going through as a first grader.” The school bus shaped collectors’ box is a gift in itself.
With more complex plot lines and deeper character development, these book sets for middle school readers will set their imaginations into overdrive. Who needs video games when you’ve got a book series to finish?
Amulet #1-8 Box Set Author and illustrator Kazu Kibuishi's series is one of the hottest fantasy graphic novel storylines, and the newest, Supernova (Amulet #8) was just released earlier this year. "Kids will get swept up in the saga and world-building of fantasy, and pore over the rich illustrations," says Webber-Bey.
I Survived Collectors Toolbox Webber-Bey says this set is a hit with the middle school crowd. “There are a lot of different reasons the series appeals to young readers: it has action and adventure, the world-building immerses you in history, the main characters are in dire situations, and kids use their wits to succeed. Each of these aspects of I Survived offer different a direction to go with read-alike recommendations.”
Pam Muñoz Ryan Paperback Bundle For the emerging independent readers who can appreciate more mature themes like poverty, self identity, and multiracial experiences, Esperanza Rising, Becoming Naomi León, Paint the Wind, The Dreamer, and more by this award-winning author will be transportive. Webber-Bey calls Ryan "a bona-fide legend in children’s literature."
The Baby-Sitters Club Retro Tin Box Set For the record, it’s totally acceptable to share books with your nine-year-old. “The Baby-Sitters Club box set in a retro tin with the original cover art is a perfect gift we both will love!” says Jamie Beth Cohen.
Kingdom Keepers Box Set Mom Brandee Foster thinks this book set will be a win with her 10-year-old this holiday season. “Kingdom Keepers are on his wishlist. ‘Adventure and Disney?’ he says, ‘ How can that be bad?’”
Wings of Fire Boxset Kids who love adventure and fantasy are sure to fall for this series. “Wings of Fire is my 10-year-old daughter’s faaaavorite series,” says mom Rachel Ellis. “She says ‘It’s about DRAGONS, which are the best.’ It’s also exciting – the ends of the chapters make you want to read the next one.”
Ages 13 and up
The teenage years are all about self-discovery and learning to navigate the divide between childhood and the adult world. The right book series can help, serving as a touchstone kids will think back on for decades to come.
The Hunger Games Special Edition Box Set Even if they’ve seen the movies, there’s so much more to this story. “This series is fast-paced and thought-provoking,” says mom Katie Mills Giorgio. “My son couldn’t read them fast enough. There are characters that you care deeply for, are often surprised by, and learn from.”
Harry Potter Hardcover Boxed Set Even if your child has read the Harry Potter books, they’ll love having all seven in a special case for years to come. “It’s hard to go wrong with the Harry Potter Book set,” says Jeanne Sager, mom to a 13-year-old. “The series is a classic, and it’s one I’ve found she revisits just to check in with old friends like Hermione and Dobby.”
Divergent Series Complete Box Set Even if they’ve read the series already, having a complete set is a special gift. “My 13-year-old is a big Divergent fan and would love having the whole set," says mom Jeanne Sager. “It’s the perfect book for a kid who’s just biding her time until Veronica Roth’s newest hits shelves!”
Action & Adventure Collection Teen readers hungry to see diverse characters grapple with gritty situations (because kids will be the first to tell you that real life isn't always pretty) will devour this new book pack collection. Some content is mature: Refugee, by Alan Gratz, for example, does not pull any punches about the horrors kids and their families experience when seeking a safer homeland. Miles Morales:Spider Man, featuring an Afro-Puerto Rican teen as the title character, will give kids yet another reason to root for their favorite high-school superhero. This book pack was created by popular demand after Scholastic's 2018 summer reading challenge.