12.14.2008

Holly's Christmas Book List - Part I

We have been enjoying our Month of Christmas Books, and I am glad so many people are excited about it and are making this their own tradition. Whether you have 3 Christmas books or 300, it really is a fun addition to the holidays.

Below is part one of my Christmas Book list. The rest of our books are still wrapped, but I should be able to share the complete list by the end of next week. Some books are meaningful and share important morals, others are just plain fun. There are old and new favorites, handpicked treasures, hand-me down titles, and some were given to us as gifts. We definitely enjoy some of these books more than others, but they all make for fun holiday reads. My children are barely 5 and almost 3, and while some books are a bit too young for them, and some are a bit too old, they are still easy to read and enjoy with kids, even if the adults are paying more
attention than the kids by the end of the book! Some books might be best split into two reading sessions.

I have linked all titles through Amazon to keep things simple, and linked to the version of the books that I have. You may like other versions better. I am adding my quick opinion/description to the list, but that is all it is. You can follow the links and read descriptions and reviews to learn more. If you want to purchase a book and it shows it is unavailable, try searching for the title again (Or look elsewhere). I have found that sometimes books appear as unavailable in one search and available to purchase in another - go figure!

Happy Holidays and Happy Reading!

The Snowman -Find the original wordless version - it is magical. The Snowman Movie is a wonderful short film based on the book.

Twelve Days of Christmas, Rachel Griffin - Beautifully illustrated with appliqued and embroidered fabric creations that bring an exotic twist to the traditional words. (The piper's piping are snake charmers, and the 5 golden rings are placed on an elephants legs and trunk.)

Santa Calls A longer tale filled with delightful illustrations and wonderful text. I adore it. We read this last night, and by the last 2 pages my 5-year old was ready to be done, even with images of elf wars and flying canoes. We barely made it through.

White Snow, Bright snow - A simple and realistic view of what happens in a small town when it snows. It was written in 1947, and it is nice to see a quick glimpse into simpler times.

Harold at the North Pole - I am a sucker for any book about Harold and his Purple Crayon!

Carl's Christmas - A beautifully illustrated and imaginative wordless tale. Some complain that a dog (especially a rottweiler!) babysitting a baby is ridiculous, and that taking the baby on its back through the cold city on Christmas Eve is unrealistic, but for me it is just playful fantasty and fun like many books written for children or the holidays.

The First Noel: A Christmas Carousel - Beautiful 3-D paper cut-outs of the Nativity Story. It is fascinating for adults and children, so it is one to keep safe on a high-shelf!

Jolly Old Santa Claus - I have never read the original, but am considering tracking it down. The illustrations are why you buy this book and supposedly the new editions illustrations are cut to fit and are missing parts. Our short board book version is still worth reading.

Santa Mouse, Where Are You? - A rhyming tale about a Santa Mouse who travels with Santa Claus and leaves tiny presents in the branches of Christmas trees. The end of the story hints at finding your own presents from Santa Mouse, and you can bring this to life by leaving tiny presents in the branches of your tree for your children to find.

Three Snow Bears - A winter version of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. It isn't a holiday book, but it involves snow and cold...

The Stars Came Out at Christmas - 3-D star molds appear in the sky above Bethlehem and as the story of Christ's birth unfolds.

The Night Before Christmas, Illustrated by Christian Birmingham - Big text and delightful illustrations make this version lovely.

Claude The Dog, A Christmas Story - A simple and short story about a generous and caring dog.

Olivia Helps with Christmas - I am partial to the Olivia Series because my daughter could be Olivia. It is ridiculous how similar their actions and attitudes are.

Annika's Secret Wish - A longer story about a little girl's love for her brother. My daughter's name is Annika and I have grown up eating Danish Rice Pudding every Christmas for as long as I can remember, so this book is especially fun for me to read.

Shhh! - A cute tale of a Santa that needs to be reminded to be quiet on Christmas Eve.

The Gift of Nothing - A sweet book about giving precisely that.

The Gift of the Christmas Cookie - A longer book about generosity and the true meaning of Christmas that involves cookies! I plan on purchasing an angel cookie mold to really bring the story to life next year. (See here, or here)

Silent Night - Thomas Kinkade - The words of the song accompanied by Thomas Kinkade's stunning illustrations.

The Story of Christmas - I wrote about this here.

Can You See What I See? The Night Before Christmas - We love "I Spy" books.

How The Grinch Stole Christmas - A classic.

Cole Family Christmas - This is a new book that is on our to-read list. It is a short chapter book that would need to be read over a few nights. It is a true story that shares a family experiencing the real meaning of Christmas and I am excited to read it.

Search for Santa's Helpers - A festive and child-friendly variation on Where's Waldo?

The Family Treasury of Christmas Carols - An illustrated collection of Carols. My husband and I had fun singing these with and without the kids. They enjoyed watching us share in the Christmas spirit!

Bialosky's Christmas - A cute story about a bear and his Christmas party.

The Mitten - The story of a lost mitten and what happens when the animals in the woods find it. Another story that isn't about Christmas, but is a fun winter tale.

Babar and Father Christmas - A longer tale of Babar's quest to bring Father Christmas to the Elephant's Country.

Jingle Bells - An extended version of the classic carol that takes you around the world.

The Story of the Nutcracker Ballet - Just that! The name Marie is used instead of Clara.

Santa's Secret Helper - The elves load up 2 sleighs because Santa has a secret helper this year, and it turns out to be Mrs. Claus. It is a fun twist, but not a favorite.

Frosty the Snowman - The words to the song with illustrations.

A tiny book set that includes adaptations of The Gift of the Magi, A Christmas Carol, The Little Fir Tree, and The First Noel. My daughter loves how small the books are, and even those these classics aren't my favorites, it is nice to have them around.

And just because this illustration rings true...

poster found via We Heart Books

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2 comments:

Mindy said...

Thanks for sharing! There are lots of new books for us to add to our list!

Marcus said...

Thank you for taking the time to create this list. I am so looking forward to next year and starting this tradition!