How to pick a book for any age
Look for well designed books, with clear, striking illustrations. Oliver Jeffers is a particular favourite with both children and adults.
For babies and toddlers, board books can withstand lots of bashing and biting. The That's Not My range by Usborne are recommended.
Younger children love funny stories -- for plenty of read-aloud giggles, try Mo Willem's Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus.
Remember even a classic is 'new' to a child -- so don't rule out classics such as The Very Hungry Caterpillar or Where the Wild Things Are.
Look for short chapters, limited vocabulary and a picture on every page.
Match the book to the child's interests and tastes.
Don't forget audio books -- ideal for the car.
Funny and rude rule the day -- try Eoin Colfer's Ed's Bed or Roddy Doyle's The Giggler Treatment.
The reading golden years. Ask the child or her/his parent what was the last book they absolutely loved and take it from there -- it's a good guide to a) their reading age and b) what type of stories they like best.
Teen readers can be tricky as their reading tastes are quite refined by this age. A book token is a great idea. Or if they haven't read it yet, most teens adore The Hunger Games.
If in doubt, ask for guidance in your local bookshop, they are fantastic at book matchmaking!