Books about the sea

Boat in sea

There is lot about life under the sea to inspire children. We share some of our favourite titles about underwater animals, pirates and mermaids. There’s something for all ages.

Babies to 3 years

Ocean Babies by Deborah Lee Rose

The babies of the ocean come alive in this colourful tale of life as it begins beneath

the waves. Your baby can see how their favourite sea animals grow and learn just as they


Clumsy Crab by Ruth Galloway

Nippers is a little crab with big claws. No matter how hard he tries, he always

seems to get things caught between them and ruin the fun. When he finds his friend, the

Octopus caught in the weeds, it’s Nippers’ turn to be the hero and use his claws for good.

Under the Sea by Fiona Watt

With jigsaw puzzles of different textures you can help your little one improve their

sensory abilities alongside a story showing various vibrant sea creatures.

Ages 3 to 4 years

The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister

When the rainbow fish’s friend asks for one of his beautiful scales, he doesn’t want

to share. After seeking advice from an octopus, the rainbow fish discovers that sharing is


The Singing Mermaid by Julia Donaldson

A mermaid with a lovely voice joins the circus to sing and perform, but even

though the audience loves her, she finds herself to be quite lonely. Can she find a way to


Commotion in the Ocean by Giles Andreae

Every single creature is moving and grooving in the deep blue sea to this lyrical

and rhyming verse book from Giles Andreae.

Do Pirates Take Baths? by Kathy Tucker

Ever wonder what it was like to be a pirate? This charming book leads you through

the fantastic lives of pirates: what they do, what they eat, what their birthdays are like,

and of course, if they take baths!

Clam I Am by Dr. Seuss

Norval the fish is setting up for his seaside talk show on the Fish Channel but

needs some help. Who better to film than the Cat in the Hat himself?

Tiddler: The Storytelling Fish by Julia Donaldson

From being saved by a mermaid to riding a seahorse, Tiddler is a lively little fish

who loves to tell tall tales about his adventures…

Ages 5 to 8 years

Winnie Under the Sea by Valerie Thomas

When Winnie drags poor Wilbur to the seaside for holiday, he’s reluctant to splash

in…that is, until Winnie turns him into a catfish.

Pirates Love Underpants by Claire Freedman

Join the pirates of the Black Bloomer on a quest for the magical Pants of Gold. Sail

through bubbly swamps, navigate around grumpy crocodiles, and meet some sharks with

some very fancy shorts.

A House for Hermit Crab by Eric Carle

When Hermit Crab outgrows his shell, he realises it is time to choose a new one.

With the help of his friends, Hermit Crab decorates his shell and realises that home is

where the heart is.

The Lighthouse Keeper’s Lunch by Ronda Armitage

Every day Mr. Grinling attends to the lighthouse, and every day he enjoys a lunch

prepared by his wife Mrs. Grinling. But soon a flock of seagulls begin stealing Mr. Grinlings


Ages 9 to 12 years

Manfish: A Story of Jacques Cousteau by Jennifer Berne

Long before Jacques Cousteau was an oceanographer, he was just a curious child.

Shown in a series of stunning pictures, we learn of Jacques Cousteau’s marvellous


Aquamarine by Alice Hoffman

The day after a storm, best friends Hailey and Claire discover a mermaid named

Aquamarine trapped in the pool of the local beach club.

Pirates! by Celia Rees

Two young women from different backgrounds set sail on a pirate ship in order to

live the life of freedom they’ve always wanted. Together they battle the high seas and

dangerous enemies in this liberating adventure.