Predictable Books: Chain or Circular Story

These books are examples of chains and circular stories.

"Predictable books are those which, by virtue of the book's pattern, children can successfully anticipate the next word or next sentence. Their predictability encourages participation and engages children's minds. Often, these books make heavy use of rhyme or repetition." - Ready for Reading (Juvenile Parent/Teacher Resource Room - J 372.58 Bi)

Compiled by:
Children's Services Staff
Beautiful Bananas

Elizabeth Laird
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej La)

On her way to her grandfather's house with a bunch of bananas, Beatrice has a series of mishaps with jungle animals who each substitute something new for what she is carrying. 

Charlie Cook's Favorite Book

Julia Donaldson
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Do)

A circular tale in which each new book character is reading about the next, beginning and ending with Charlie Cook.

Don't Slam the Door!

Dori Chaconas
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Cha)

A cumulative, rhyming tale of a slamming door which wakes a cat, setting into motion an absurd chain of events and resulting in chaos. 

Higher! Higher!

Leslie Patricelli
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Pat)

One child. One swing. An obliging dad. The inevitable plea to go "Higher! Higher!" Add Leslie Patricelli's wildly expressive illustrations, and an everyday pastime reaches new heights of humor and whimsy. How high can it go? Higher than a giraffe? Taller than a mountain? Is Earth the final frontier? The creator of a popular series of board books rises to the occasion with an ingenious picture book of very few words that expresses the giddy glee of being pushed in a swing. 

How Kind!

Mary Murphy
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Mu)

When Hen gives Pig an egg, she sets off a chain of events that brings kindness to all of the animals on the farm.     

If You Give a Moose a Muffin

Laura Joffe Numeroff
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Nu)

Chaos can ensue if you give a moose a muffin and start him on a cycle of urgent requests.

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie

Laura Joffe Numeroff
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Nu)

Relating the cycle of requests a mouse is likely to make after you give him a cookie takes the reader through a young child's day. 

It Wasn't My Fault

Helen Lester
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Le)

When accidents happen to Murdley Gurdson, they are usually his own fault, but when a bird lays an egg on Murdley's head one day, he tries hard to find someone else to blame.     

Look Out, Bird!

Marilyn Janovitz
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Ja)

A snail starts a chain reaction involving many animals when it slips off a branch and hits a bird.  

Oh, Look!

Patricia Polacco
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Po)

Three goats visit a fair but run home after they seem to encounter a troll.   

Red Sled

Patricia Thomas
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Tho)

 A boy and his father lift one another's spirits by going sledding on a winter's night.    

Round the Garden

Omri Glaser
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Gl)

Traces the journey of a tear as it falls to the ground, evaporates, reappears as rain, and waters a garden to make an onion grow to produce more tears.     

Round Trip

Ann Jonas
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Jo)

Black and white illustrations and text record the sights on a day trip to the city and back home again to the country. The trip to the city is read from front to back and the return trip, from back to front, upside down. 

Ten Seeds

Ruth Brown
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Br)
The Stonecutter

(Juvenile Nonfiction - J 398.2 Stonecutter Dem)

A stonecutter wants to be everything he is not and has to learn the hard way that what he really wants to be is exactly who he is.     

When The Elephant Walks

Keiko Kasza
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Ka)

When the Elephant walks he scares the Bear who runs away and scares the Crocodile who runs away and scares the Wild Hog in this never-ending animal story.

Who is the Beast?

Keith Baker
(Juvenile Picture Books - Ej Bak)

When a tiger suspects he is the beast the jungle animals are fleeing from, he returns to them and points out their similarities.     

Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears : a West African Tale

Verna Aardema
(Juvenile Nonfiction - J 398.2 Why Mosquitoes Aar)

Reveals the meaning of the mosquito's buzz.

Why the Sun Was Late

Benjamin Elkin
(Juvenile Nonfiction - J 398.2 Why The Sun Elk)