Picture Books About the Beach and Ocean

Today’s guest post comes from Tiffa of The Picture Book Review.

Picture Books about the Beach and Ocean

Tiffa will be sharing 10 of her favorite picture books about the beach and ocean!

Ladybug Girl

1.  Ladybug Girl at the Beach by David Soman and Jacky Davis

My son loves the Ladybug Girl series and this one is his favorite of them all.  Lulu is at the beach with her family for the first time.  She isn’t so sure about those big waves but when her dear pail needs rescuing — she doesn’t let them stand in her way.  A sweet, fun, and inspiring read.  It makes me want to go to the beach each time I read it to my son.


2.  Asiago by Adam McHeffey

What happens when a vampire goes to the beach with his friends?  Well, unfortunately for Asiago, it consists of splinters, garlic, and too much sun.  However, he has some wonderful friends and they think of a great way for Asiago to enjoy going to the beach.  The characters in this book are fantastic and even though things don’t go Asiago’s way — he responds beautifully to them.

The Bravest Woman in America

3.  The Bravest Woman in America by Marissa Moss and Illustrated by Andrea U’ren

My son has found this book fascinating.  Maybe it is the lighthouse?  Maybe it is the daring rescue? The whole story is great and the illustrations are mesmerizing.  It’s a wonderful nonfiction picture book about Ida Lewis and how she cared for the lighthouse and those she rescued.  We’ve read this book countless times and it is always exciting.


4.  Encyclopedia Prehistorica: Sharks and Other Sea Monsters by Robert Sabuda and Matthew Reinhart

Have you seen these pop-up books?  They’re incredible!  I had no idea that pop-up books could be so intricate and detailed.  This is another nonfiction book where the pictures literally jump out at you.  You can see amazing images of sharks and other sea animals.  It is also filled with lots of interesting facts.  A word of warning:  the pop-ups are very fragile and so adult supervision with these books are a must.  However, my two-and-a-half-year-old son has looked through our book a countless number of times and has been very gentle — so I think it is fine for toddlers with adult supervision as long as they understand they must be very careful.


5.  Flotsam by David Wiesner

What happens when a boy finds a camera washed up on shore at the beach?  Amazing images of sea life.  When he discovers that children have been finding this camera, replacing the film, and passing it along for many years — he does the same.  A truly magical book.

Old Robert

6. Old Robert and the Sea-Silly Cats by Barbara Joossee and Illustrated by Jen Juttee

This is a sweet book about a man who, despite what he thinks he *should* do, follows his heart and makes new friends.  It has beautiful illustrations and a wonderful rhythm to it.  This book is a family favorite.

Ocean Sunlight

7.  Ocean Sunlight: How Tiny Plants Feed the Seas by Molly Bang and Penny Chisholm

My son loves Ten, Nine, Eight by Molly Bang and so I discovered this book while searching for other books by her.  The illustrations are beautiful and the information is highly detailed and interesting.  The information was a bit much for my young son, but we enjoyed talking through the book.  He would ask questions about the illustrations and I would do my best to answer him.  As he gets older we’ll read this book again and again and he’ll be able to absorb more information.  It’s great.  Young ones can enjoy the illustrations and older ones can enjoy the illustrations and fascinating facts.

What Lives in a Shell

8.  What Lives in a Shell?  by Kathleen Weidner Zoehfeld and Illustrated by Helen K. Davie

This is another nonfiction picture book that makes information very accessible.  While this book is not strictly about the beach or ocean (it talks about snails) it is a great book to read before going to the beach.  You can collect different sea shells and see which animals may have once inhabited them.  The illustrations and direct, conversational style of the book make it great for very young children as well as older children.  My son enjoyed this book greatly and I enjoyed reading it to him and talking with him about the different kinds of animals that live in shells.


9.  The Octonauts & the Sea of Shade by Meomi

This book has been described as, “Hello, Kitty meets Star Trek” and I couldn’t have said it better myself.  It is stylish, fun, and good-hearted.  The illustrations are fun, the vocabulary is excellent, and the plot is very creative and whimsical.  This book is part of a series and the series inspired a television show.  I haven’t seen the television show, but if it is anything like the book — I’m sure it is a lot of fun.


10. Beach by Elisha Cooper

Homer, also by Elisha Cooper, is one of my son’s current favorites.  Beach is also excellent.  The beautiful illustrations and straight-forward style of this book make it accessible and enjoyable for everyone.  This book simply talks about a day at the beach and the many different kinds of people and things that happen at the beach in a given day.  It’s another book that makes you look forward to going to the beach.

About the Author:
Tiffa is a stay-at-home mom who spends her days playing, cooking, cleaning, exploring, and reading picture books with her son. Together they’ve read thousands of picture books, some of which she reviews at thepicturebookreview.com.


  1. What a great round-up of summer beach books! I’ve read some, but will look forward to exploring the unfamiliar ones. (I hopped over here from Tina’s Mommynificent blog. Glad to have found you :))

  2. What a great list! Flotsam and the Sharks pop ups are some of our very favorite books! I’ll have to find the rest. I confess that I read Ladybug Girl at the Beach yesterday at the bookstore but didn’t buy it. My pile was too high but I did enjoy reading it!

  3. Such a fun list! I adore Flotsam and am quite intrigued by The Octonauts. I need to look up Meomi. Thanks for sharing. (I found you via mommynificent.com)

  4. This list is fantastic! We live walking distance from the beach, but I don’t use it for the educational treasure-trove it is nearly enough. These books will definitely help me do better at that. I love how you gave such a varied selection. It seems like even the most reluctant reader could find at least one to like from this list!
    Thanks for linking up to Booknificent Thursday! Hope to see you again this week!
    Tina from mommynificent.com

  5. Pingback: Ultimate List of Book Lists - Rachel K Tutoring Blog

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