The 'Mad Max' actor would be perfect to read this selection of picture books and middle grade novels

By Nivea Serrao
March 27, 2017 at 03:49 PM EDT
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Credit: BBC

Tom Hardy is known for playing dark and twisty, action-packed characters. He was Bane in Dark Knight Rises and Max in Mad Max: Fury Road, for goodness sake. So he’s obviously the perfect guy to read a bedtime story, right?

Well, he keeps doing it, so it must be true. Hardy first graced fans with his take on bedtime tales on special occasions like New Year’s Eve and later Valentine’s Day. And the reason for his latest literary delight? None other than Mother’s Day, which was celebrated on March 26 in the United Kingdom this year.

The Taboo star’s third outing as part of BBC’s CBeebies Bed Time Stories saw him read aloud from Ross Collins’ There’s a Bear on My Chair, which you can see a brief clip of below.

With Hardy bringing his voice to so many book lovers young and old, we put together a list of reading material that we’d like to see the dog-loving actor apply his thespian skills to:

The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak

Not only is this book fun to read aloud, but Hardy’s words are often accompanied by images from the book he’s reading. With this selection, kids get all the fun of Novak’s creativity with words — which will soon be applied to teaching the alphabet — while parents (and fans in general) get all the joy of watching Hardy bring said words to life. Order it here.

Credit: Dial Books

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

This perennial classic (which has since become real) has everything: iconic characters, an emotional sacrifice, and a deeply meaningful message. The progression would be elevated even further with Hardy’s deep voice capturing the pathos of Silverstein’s words, no doubt creating an experience that would stay with viewers well into the night. Order it here.

Jumanji by Chris Van Allsburg

Both the 1995 fan fave flick and it’s 2017 “continuation” can trace their roots back to Van Allsburg’ original literary creation that saw young Peter and Judy turn to the magical board game when they’re bored one afternoon. The award-winning story’s animal-filled twists and turns, combined with Hardy’s ability to speak in a low growl when needed, would allow fans excited for the movie to reacquaint themselves original while still getting a movie-worthy narration experience. (Plus who doesn’t want to hear Tom Hardy’s impression of a monkey?) Order it here.

Credit: Scholastic

Rory the Dinosaur: Me and My Dad by Liz Climo

Rory is a young dinosaur with lots of imagination, and energy — much to his patient father’s chagrin. Climo’s sweet illustrations of the tiny dino’s hilarious adventures would make for captivating visuals while letting Hardy have fun and get loose with the light-hearted story that sees Rory attempt to give his father some space and interfere with the older dinosaur’s simple desire for a nap. Order it here.

Credit: Little Brown Young Readers

The Wild Robot by Peter Brown

Brown’s book is a bestseller and one of EW’s Best Middle Grade Novels of 2016 for a reason. The earnest tale of Roz the Robot’s struggle to “grow up” and survive in the wild while making friends and adjusting to parenthood is utterly relatable and an instant classic — something to which the actor could totally do justice. Order it here.

Warren the 13th and the All-Seeing Eye by Tania del Rios and Will Staehle

This would be a double delight for viewers as not only are del Rios and Staehle’s books filled with fun images and designs but the mystery-filled story of Warren, an orphan and future heir to his family’s hotel, is perfect for listeners of all ages who will be both surprised and delighted by the young hero’s quest to battle evil witches and save his beloved home. Not to mention the fact that a longer text would allow for more footage of a neatly-bearded, cardigan-clad Hardy. Order it here.

Credit: Unusual Corporation & Quirk Books

The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin

The Westing Game is a solid all-ages mystery novel, and Hardy’s narration would allow for whole families to experience Raskin’s classic together — with parents getting the chance to travel back to their own childhoods as they hear the words read aloud once more. And yes, the text is long and doesn’t lend itself well to images, but the range of characters and the central puzzle would be showcase of Hardy’s character work. Order it here.

Credit: Penguin Random House