Every January I pack up the Christmas books along with the ornaments and the stockings, the Nutcracker and the sign that hangs on the door wishing everyone a Merry Christmas. Like most everything we pull out of the box the following December, we’re all pleasantly surprised to find them again and can’t get enough of these books during the holiday season. Because the one thing I love more than singing Christmas carols and watching Love Actually is reading the various Christmas books to my children. We recite ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, we read the Hawaiian Christmas books that Santa brought the year before, we go to the library and find new ones. The following is a list of our favorites this year- some are classics like Pearl S. Buck’s “Christmas Day in the Morning” and Dylan Thomas’s “A Child’s Christmas in Wales” – even a modern toddler board book take on Dickens’s “A Christmas Carol”- and some are new and fun, like “Olive, the Other Reindeer” (which I profiled last week here) and “Daddy Christmas and Hanukkah Mama.” But they all truly embody the Christmas spirit. In “Why Christmas Trees Aren’t Perfect,” a tree yearns to grow up to be the perfect Christmas tree, but keeps allowing birds and such to nest in its branches, which makes it kind of misshapen in the end, but that’s exactly what makes it perfect. In “Babushka,” a woman on her way to the manger finds that she receives only when she actually gives the most love. In “Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree,” an old man with a too-tall Christmas tree finds a way to spread the love.
Whatever holiday you’re celebrating, I hope the season finds you warm and merry.
- Christmas Day in the Morning, by Pearl S. Buck
- Olive, the Other Reindeer, by J. Otto Seibold
- Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree, by Robert Barry
- Why Christmas Trees Aren’t Perfect, by Richard H. Schneider
- A Christmas Carol: A Babylit Colors Primer, by Jennifer Adams
- The Story of Holly and Ivy, by Rumer Godden
- The Little Drummer Boy, by Ezra Jack Keats
- Daddy Christmas and Hanukkah Mama, by Selina Alko
- Babushka, by Sandra Ann Horn
- A Child’s Christmas in Wales, by Dylan Thomas
What are your children’s favorite Christmas books? What about your own childhood favorites?