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  • Writer's pictureTullipStudio Team


What is children’s book size?

Children’s book size, also known as trim size, is the actual book dimensions. Children’s book size is measured in length by height. A trim size of a 8.5" x 11" has a portrait orientation, while 11" x 8.5" has a landscape orientation.

Children’s book size measures the interior of a book, also known as the book block. For a paperback book, the book cover size will be the same as the book block. For a hardcover book, however, this is not the case. The actual cover size on a hardcover book will roughly .25" taller and .125" wider than the book block to accommodate for the hardcover case that wraps around the book block.

What is Trim Size?  

Trim size is the dimension of a children’s book’s pages. Depending on the children’s book binding type, a book cover size might be the same dimensions as the trim size or larger. During children’s book production, book pages are printed then the edges are trimmed so each page is completely even. Trim size is a spec that has a big impact on the utility of the children’s book as well as its price. Printing experts like us guide and educate publishers about the most efficient trim size, so we can help them reduce costs for 1st printings and reprints across the life cycle of the children’s book.

Why is trim size important?

Choosing a children’s book trim size may not seem important early on in the publishing process, but if you are publishing a picture book, it is essential. And sticking to that decision can mean the difference between success and failure. Picture books are created with art in mind. And illustrations that are created to the wrong size aren't easily fixed.

How to choose a children's book size

Book orientation

For a picture book, there are three options for children’s book orientation: Square, Portrait (vertical), and Landscape (horizontal). In deciding the orientation of a children’s book, it is important to consider what the illustrations need to show. A picture book about a giraffe will better in a portrait orientation to allow the illustrations to showcase the giraffe's height. A picture book about a walk on the beach, on the other hand, will likely work better with either a square or landscape orientation to show the beach stretching across the page, rather than up. Always considering what the illustrations will look like, and what orientation they are most suited to, when choosing a book size.


What are the best portrait children's book sizes?

For your reference, the book sizes below are listed in inches:

Picture books: 

  1. 7” x 9”

  2. 7.5” x 9.25”

  3. 8” x 10”

  4. 8.5” x 11”

Early reader books:

6” x 9”

Chapter books: 

  1. 5.25” x 7.75”

  2. 5.5” x 7.25”

  3. 6.5” x 8”

Middle grade:

  1. 5.25” x 7.5”

  2. 5.25” x 7.75”

What are the best landscape children's book sizes?

For your reference, the book sizes below are listed in inches:

Picture books: 

  1. 10” x 8”

  2. 11” x 8.5”

What are the best square children's book sizes?

For your reference, the book sizes below are listed in inches:

Picture Books: 

  1. 8” x 8”

  2. 8.5” x 8.5”

  3. 9” x 9” and 10" x 10"

Why do standard children’s book sizes matter?

The truth is, picture books can be published in ANY trim size. But there are standard children’s book sizes. Why? Because some sizes are more cost-efficient than others. Printing a children’s book can be expensive, and every bit of paper wasted in the printing process costs money. Choosing a cost-efficient trim size can minimize overall printing costs of a children’s book. Most offset printers work with what is called a sheet-fed press. That means a big sheet of paper is fed through the printer, and your children’s book is “offset” onto that page.

Print on demand children’s book sizes.

As you move through your choices, keep in mind how you plan to print a children’s book. If you intend to offset print your children’s book, you’ve got your pick of picture book sizes. As noted above, there are standard children's book sizes that result in the most cost-efficient printing, but there are times when as an author you may want book that is less than standard.

If you intend to use print on demand, less than standard may not an option. Print on demand services offer a limited selection of children’s book sizes, and all books adhere to their specifications. The top two print on demand services are Amazon KDP and Ingram Spark. Both offer common children’s book size options, but they don’t offer all of the same options.

Many authors choose to create eBooks and paperbacks through KDP, but go to Ingram Spark for hardcover (as KDP does not currently produce hardcover picture books). If you think you may want to publish through both services, try to pick a trim size offered by both. By working to a common children’s book size, you’ll be able to use the same files across all platforms, rather than re-illustrating or redesigning if you choose to switch platforms.

As of my last knowledge update in January 2022, both Amazon KDP and IngramSpark offer a variety of book sizes. However, please note that their offerings may change over time, so it's a good idea to check their websites for the most up-to-date information. Here are some common children’s book sizes that were available through these platforms:

Amazon KDP:

  1. 5" x 8"

  2. 5.06" x 7.81"

  3. 5.25" x 8"

  4. 5.5" x 8.5"

  5. 6" x 9"

  6. 7" x 10"

  7. 8.5" x 11"


  1. 5" x 8"

  2. 5.5" x 8.5"

  3. 6" x 9"

  4. 7" x 10"

  5. 8.5" x 11"

Please keep in mind that both Amazon KDP and IngramSpark may offer additional trim sizes, and the specific sizes available can change over time. When you're preparing to publish a children’s book through either of these platforms, it's a good idea to review their current guidelines and options to ensure you select the most appropriate size for your project.

Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) offers a range of book sizes for children's books. The best size for your children's book will depend on the content, target audience, and your personal preferences. Here are some common children's book sizes available on KDP:

  1. 8.5" x 8.5" (21.59 cm x 21.59 cm): This square size is popular for picture books and works well for illustrations, as it provides ample space for artwork. It's a versatile choice for many children's books.

  2. 8" x 10" (20.32 cm x 25.4 cm): This size is slightly larger and provides a more traditional book layout. It's also a common choice for picture books, especially those with more text.

  3. 7" x 10" (17.78 cm x 25.4 cm): This size is suitable for chapter books and early readers with fewer illustrations. It's a good choice for transitioning from picture books to chapter books.

  4. 6" x 9" (15.24 cm x 22.86 cm): While not a typical children's book size, this size is sometimes used for middle-grade fiction and non-fiction books. It's closer to a standard novel size.

  5. 5" x 8" (12.7 cm x 20.32 cm): This smaller size is suitable for early readers, chapter books, and some middle-grade novels. It's a more compact format that can be more comfortable for young readers to hold.

When choosing a size for your children's book, consider the age of your target audience and the style of your children’s book. Picture books with lots of illustrations may benefit from larger sizes, while chapter books and middle-grade books with more text can use smaller sizes. Ultimately, the best size for your children's book will depend on your specific project and design preferences.

Keep in mind that Amazon KDP provides specific templates and guidelines for formatting your children’s book for different sizes, so make sure to review those to ensure your children’s book looks its best in the chosen format.

IngramSpark offers a variety of book sizes for children's books, and the best size for your book depends on your specific needs and preferences. Here are some common children's book sizes that you can consider:

  1. 8 x 10 inches: This is a popular size for picture books and allows for larger illustrations and easy readability.

  2. 8.5 x 8.5 inches: A square format can work well for children's books, especially if your illustrations are designed to be more symmetrical.

  3. 9 x 7 inches: This size is a bit smaller and can be a good option for chapter books or early readers.

  4. 10 x 8 inches: Another size suitable for picture books with slightly larger dimensions.

  5. 11 x 8.5 inches: A larger option that provides more space for illustrations and text. It can work well for more elaborate picture books.

  6. Custom Sizes: If you have a specific vision for your book's size, you can work with a custom size. Just keep in mind that custom sizes might be more expensive, and it's important to consider the practicality and cost-effectiveness of your chosen size.

When deciding on the best size for your children's book, consider factors like your target audience's age, the content of your children’s book, and your budget.

Additionally, IngramSpark provides guidelines and templates to help you format your children’s book correctly for printing, so make sure to use their resources for a smooth publishing process. You may also want to consult with a graphic designer or illustrator to ensure that your book's layout and illustrations are optimized for your chosen size.

What are the standard children’s book sizes in publishing?

Printing something other than a children’s picture book. The publishing industry tends to follow specific book size conventions. Check out the standard book sizes for other kinds of books.

Early Reader Books: This includes leveled readers for beginning readers, such as Step into Reading and I Can Read, and the earliest of chapter books, like the graphic series Narwhal and Jelly.

Early reader book sizes

6” x 9”

Chapter Books: These are books for newly independent readers who aren’t ready for more mature stories (generally ages 8-10). Some examples include The Magic Treehouse, Ivy + Bean, and Mercy Watson.

Chapter book sizes

  1. 5.25” x 7.75”

  2. 5.5” x 7.25”

  3. 6.5” x 8”

Middle Grade: Middle grade stories are more complex, often focusing on family, friends, or school. These are books for kids 8-12. Some examples include Wonder, the Percy Jackson series, and Harry Potter.

Middle grade book sizes:

  1. 5.25” x 7.5”

  2. 5.25” x 7.75”

YA: These are books for older readers (12-17+) and often contain far more complex scenes and relationships. Among the most famous examples are The Hunger Games, The Fault in Our Stars, and Divergent.

YA book sizes

  1. 5.25” x 8”

  2. 5.5” x 8.5”

  3. 5.5” x 8.25”

Fiction: These are books for adults and may span a variety of genres, including fantasy, sci-fi, romance, and thriller to name a few.

Fiction book sizes

  1. 5.25” x 8”

  2. 5.5” x 8.25”

  3. 6” x 9”

  4. 6.25” x 9.25”

Non-Fiction: These are books for adults and may span a variety of genres, including memoir, self-help, and other non-fiction topics.

Nonfiction book sizes

  1. 5.25” x 8”

  2. 5.5” x 8.5”

  3. 6” x 9”

  4. 7” x 10”

What is the standard print on demand book sizes?

The standard of children's book sizes in this article assume printing through an offset printer. Below finds a comparable list of book sizes available through the print on demand services Amazon KDP and IngramSpark.

Children's books

  1. 5” x 8”

  2. 7” x 10”

  3. 8.5” x 8.5”

  4. 8” x 10”

  5. 8.5” x 11”

Early reader books

6” x 9”

Chapter books

  1. 5.06” x 7.81”

  2. 5.25” x 8”

  3. 6.14” x 9.2”

Middle grade

  1. 5.06” x 7.81”

  2. 5.25” x 8”

  3. 6.14” x 9.21”


  1. 5.25” x 8”

  2. 5.5” x 8.5”

Adult fiction

  1. 5.25” x 8.5”

  2. 5.5” x 8.5” x 8.5”

  3. 6.14” x 9.21”


  1. 5.25” x 8.5”

  2. 5.5” x 8.5”

  3. 6” x 9”

  4. 7” x 10”


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