Our selection of the best books starring talking animals. If you feel we’ve missed something, let us know in the comments below.
In a world where animals are slowly fading into extinction, twelve-year-old Kester Jaynes feels as if he hardly exists either. He’s been locked away in a home for troubled children and is unable to speak a word. Then one night, a flock of talking pigeons and a bossy cockroach come to help him escape, and he discovers that he “can” speak–to them. And the animals need him. Only Kester, with the aid of a stubborn, curious girl named Polly, can help them survive.
As the inhabitants of Redwall Abbey bask in the glorious Summer of the Late Rose, all is quiet and peaceful. But things are not as they seem. Cluny the Scourge–the evil one-eyed rat warlord, is ell-bent on destroying the tranquility as he prepares to fight a bloody battle for the ownership of Redwall. This dazzling story in the Redwall series is packed with all the wit, wisdom, humor, and blood-curdling adventure of the other books in the collection, but has the added bonus of taking the reader right back to the heart and soul of Redwall Abbey and the characters who live there.
Deep in the forest of Tyto, the Barn Owls dwell. Soren is born into their tranquil kingdom. But evil lurks in the owl world. First eggs begin to mysteriously disappear from their nests, then Soren himself is captured by a part of strange yellow-eyed owls. He finds himself in a dark and forbidding canyon. It’s called an orphanage, the St. Aegolius Academy for Orphaned Owls, but Soren knows it’s something worse. Within his gizzard, the hope for escape remains alive, no matter how many rules, punishments, and sleepless days he faces at St. Aggie’s. He and his best friend, Gylfie, know the only way out of this place is to do something they have never done before: fly.
Mrs. Frisby, a widowed mouse with four small children, must move her family to their summer quarters immediately, or face almost certain death. But her youngest son, Timothy, lies ill with pneumonia and must not be moved. Fortunately, she encounters the rats of NIMH. They are an extraordinary breed of highly intelligent creatures, who come up with a brilliant solution to her dilemma! .
Stuart Little is a shy, philosophical little mouse with a big heart and a taste for adventure. In spite of his diminutive stature, barely two inches tall, Stuart sets forth into the world wtih some mighty big plans: to ride a Fifth Avenue bus, to win a sailboat race in Central Park, and to teach school for a day. But Stuart’s greatest adventure begins when he decides to find his best friend, Margalo, a pretty little bird who once lived in a Boston fern in the Littles’ house in New York City. Climbing into his tiny car, Stuart hits the open road, sure he’s heading in the right direction, only to find himself in for a big surprise.
In the jungles of India, a pack of wolves discover a young boy. They name the boy Mowgli and protect him against dangers, including Shere Kan, the most savage tiger in the jungle. As Mowgli grows up, he learns the ways of the jungle from Bagheera the panther, the wise bear, Baloo, and other animals. Soon, he must decide whether to remain among beasts or embrace his own kind.
A phenomenal worldwide bestseller for over thirty years, Richard Adams’s Watership Down is a timeless classic and one of the most beloved novels of all time. Set in England’s Downs, a once idyllic rural landscape, this stirring tale of adventure, courage and survival follows a band of very special creatures on their flight from the intrusion of man and the certain destruction of their home. Led by a stouthearted pair of brothers, they journey forth from their native Sandleford Warren through the harrowing trials posed by predators and adversaries, to a mysterious promised land and a more perfect society.
The Wind in the Willows features the adventures of woodland residents Mole, Ratty, and Badger as they rescue their friend Toad from escapades with coach-houses, motor-cars, and washer-women, finally helping him vanquish the stoats and weasels who have captured Toad Hall. Since its beginning as a series of stories told to Kenneth Grahame’s young son, the Wind in the Willows has become one of the best-loved children’s books of all time.
Nobody outfoxes Fantastic Mr. Fox!
Someone’s been stealing from the three meanest farmers around, and they know the identity of the thief—it’s Fantastic Mr. Fox! Working alone they could never catch him; but now fat Boggis, squat Bunce, and skinny Bean have joined forces, and they have Mr. Fox and his family surrounded. What they don’t know is that they’re not dealing with just any fox—Mr. Fox would rather die than surrender. Only the most fantastic plan can save him now.
Animal Farm is the remarkable allegory of a downtrodden society of overworked, mistreated animals, and their quest to create a paradise of progress, justice, and equality is one of the most scathing satires ever published.
As we witness the rise and bloody fall of the revolutionary animals, we begin to recognize the seeds of totalitarianism in the most idealistic organization; and in our most charismatic leaders, the souls of our cruelest oppressors.
This is the story of a little girl named Fern who loved a little pig named Wilbur—and of Wilbur’s dear friend Charlotte A. Cavatica, a beautiful large grey spider who lived with Wilbur in the barn. With the help of Templeton, the rat who never did anything for anybody unless there was something in it for him, and by a wonderfully clever plan of her own, Charlotte saved the life of Wilbur, who by this time had grown up to quite a pig. It’s gone on to become one of the most beloved children’s books of all time.
The four Pooh books created by A. A. Milne and Ernest H. Shepard have long been cherished by children and adults.
These stories – starring the round, endearing Bear of Little Brain and his friends Piglet, Eeyore, Christopher Robin, and others – are as popular today as when they first enchanted readers more than seventy years ago. The adventures of Christopher Robin and his friends, in which Pooh Bear uses a balloon to get honey, Piglet meets a Heffalump, and Eeyore has a birthday.