12 Ninja Books to Add the Ki-Ya to Any Read Aloud

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Great ninja action for any story time!

There’s a little ninja in every kid and, with the help of these great books, there can be a little ninja in every great story time, too!

Ninja twist on a classic

Ninja Red Riding Hood
by Corey Rosen Schwartz; illustrated by Dan Santat

The Big Bad Wolf may have been outdone by the third little pig, but he’s mastered his training and refuses to be outdone by the likes of a small, helpless girl. But this is no helpless girl and the wolf is about to meet his match (again)!
See also: The Three Ninja Pigs

Snowball Battle Ninja-Style

Samurai Santa: A Very Ninja Christmas
by Rubin Pingk

None of the other ninjas will join Yukio outside for his epic snowball fight because they don’t want to end up on Santa’s naughty list. That’s when Yukio decides this Santa character needs to be run out of town.

How to be a Super Awesome Ninja

Ninja Bunny
by Jennifer Gray Olson

There are rules every ninja must follow if he or she hopes to become super awesome. But sometimes you just have to ignore the rules.

Training the Next Generation of Ninja

by Arree Chung

A ninja must never forget his gear, his tact, and his mission. But a ninja must also never forget that how he behaves will influence and inspire future ninjas.

Ninja Road Trip

Dojo Daytrip
by Chris Toupas

Six little ninjas take a field trip to the farm and Dojo Master suffers the results. Practicing their ninja moves around the farm leaves the cowboy hat-clad Master with his hands full and his work cut out for him.
See also: Dojo Daycare

Show-and-tell Ninja

My Grandma’s a Ninja
by Todd Tarpley; illustrated by Danny Chatzikonstantinou

Having a ninja grandma is cool… until it isn’t. Getting into trouble and making enemies on account of Grandma’s ninja moves was definitely not the plan. But Grandma is a ninja, after all!

Not so sneaky Ninja

Wink: The Ninja Who Wanted to Be Noticed
by J. C. Phillipps

The happiest day of Wink’s life was when he was accepted to the Sumer Moon School for Young Ninjas. But, much to the chagrin of Master Zutsu, Wink can’t seem to shake the doubtful thought that “if no one sees me, no one knows I’m super stealthy.”
See also: Wink: The Ninja Who Wanted to Take a Nap

Believe in Ninjas

The Boy Who Cried Ninja
by Alex Latimer

Tim tells the truth. His mom and dad don’t believe him. Mostly that’s because the truth involves ninjas, giant squid, and a sunburned crocodile.

Growing Up Ninja

Ninja Baby
by David Zeltser; illustrated by Diane Goode

Nina knows the way of the ninja but quickly finds herself outmatched by the Master, a new addition to the family. But it’s when Nina stops trying to outdo the Master and accepts him for who he is that Nina realizes the power of their relationship.


The Legend of Ninja Cowboy Bear
by David Bruins; illustrated by Hilary Leung

Difference come between three friends when a ninja, a cowboy, and a bear attempt to see who is better skilled at a series of tasks. Game directions following the story invite readers to play an adaptation of Rock-Paper-Scissors using full body poses.
See also:
Ninja Cowboy Bear Presents the Way of the Ninja

Graphic Novel Pizza Ninjas

Ninja Slice (Stone Rabbit book 5)
by Erik Craddock

A competing pizza chain threatens to close down Grandpa’s business. Their secret? Speedy service, an evil orb, and ninjas!

Collage Work Stealthy Ninja

Nighttime Ninja
by Barbara Dacosta; illustrated by Ed Young

A ninja works in silence to make his way through a house while everyone is sleeping. When he finds the sweet treat he’s looking for, someone else is waiting for him.

Here’s to karate chops, ninja blocks, and samurai style. What’s your favorite ninja book?

About the Author

Matthew Winner


Matthew Winner is an elementary library media specialist in Elkridge, Maryland. He is is the co-founder and content director of All The Wonders, a children’s literature website and more, and host of the Let's Get Busy podcast, a weekly podcast where Matthew talks to authors, illustrators, award winners, up-and-comers, and everyone in between. In 2013 Matthew was named a Library Journal Mover & Shaker and was invited to the White House as part of the Champions of Change program. For more information, connect with Matthew on Twitter at @MatthewWinner .

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