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Dec 14, 2022

The Ultimate Guide to Christmas Books

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Whether as Christmas gifts or just a bit of light reading over the holidays, Christmas is the perfect occasion for a new book. What follows is a comprehensive reading guide for the whole family from the old-timey classic to warm the heart, to festive adventures perfect for keeping the kids entertained. Whether it’s to help you get into the festive spirit or just something to keep you occupied while you warm your toes in front of the fire, there are plenty of Christmassy books for you.

 

The Classics

For those of you that are looking for a classic Christmas title, these five books could be the perfect choice for you. Bring out those old childhood Christmas memories with the help of a Charles Dickens classic or lose yourself in Louisa May Alcott’s period story about the four March sisters.

Letters From Father Christmas – J.R.R. Tolkien

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For all those countless letters that you wrote to Father Christmas did you ever expect to get a reply? Well, for the Children of J.R.R. Tolkien, that was a reality. For more than 20 years, every year when Christmas came around they received tales of mischievous elves, clumsy polar bears and all manner of festive antics, all of which have been brought together for you to enjoy in this must-read Christmas classic.

A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

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You won’t be able to find a more Christmassy story, lose yourself in the trials and tribulations of scrooge himself as he encounters the ghosts of Christmas’ past, present and future. Help save Christmas with this all-time favourite by Charles Dickens, suitable for the whole family.

Village Christmas – Laurie Lee

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A heartwarming literary description of life growing up in the English countryside. After leaving his childhood home in the Cotswolds at the age of 19 and eventually returning for good, Laurie Lee opens the door to us on country life, revealing all manner of oddities from age-old May Day Rituals to going door-to-door singing Christmas carols in the snow.

The Gift of the Magi – O. Henry

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A tale illustrating the value of love in a world of financial struggle, The Gift of the Magi is a classic American tale showing us that we don’t need money to make those that we love happy. Set during the turn of the twentieth century, O. Henry tells the story of a young couple, Della and Jim as they secretly go to great lengths so they can afford gifts for one another.

Little Women – Louisa May Alcott

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Taking inspiration from her own youth, Louisa May Alcott’s timeless story of the four March sisters has stood the test of time and it’s no mystery as to why. Set during the American Civil War, the four sisters struggle to each find way in life; Meg, the oldest, finds herself pursuing a life of high society, Jo, the creative one builds her career as a writer, Beth, the quiet, kind-hearted sister who is forced to come to terms with the inevitability of her early departure from this world and finally Amy, the youngest of the four, chosen by her aunt to accompany her on her travels around Europe.

 

Books for the Kids

As incredible as these pieces of literature are, they might not be entirely suitable for the little ones, so to make sure everyone has something to read over the Christmas holidays, here are a few of our top picks for the little readers.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas – Dr Suess

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"The Grinch hated Christmas! The whole Christmas season!
Now, please don't ask why. No one quite knows the reason…" From the iconic Dr Suess comes this universally loved Christmas favourite telling the story of joy, sadness and acceptance no matter the differences. With the film adaptations making it into the annals of countless family favourites. How the Grinch Stole Christmas is an easy choice for kids this Christmas.

The Polar Express – Chris Van Allsburg

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As the town sleeps, a little boy ventures out into the night following the familiar sounds of a steam train pulling into the station. Boarding the train, the little boy embarks on an adventure of a lifetime to the North Pole to meet Santa Claus himself. Upon being asked what he wants for Christmas, the boy asks for something unexpected, something that contains the very essence of Christmas.

The Snowman – Raymond Briggs

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Fondly recognized around the world, The Snowman is the much-loved tale of the one night that a snowman comes to life. The story follows this peculiar snowman as he takes his maker on an adventure like no other. With iconic artwork and a beautifully simple story, this is a perfect book for all the younger readers this Christmas.

A Charlie Brown Christmas – Charles M. Schulz

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Christmas is almost here and everyone is getting into the festive spirit ready for the big day, everyone but Charlie brown it would seem. But worry not because Lucy, Linus and the whole Peanut Gang have got something in store that will make even Charlie Brown feel merry!

The Velveteen Rabbit – Margery Williams Bianco

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Love is the essence of Christmas and what better way to tell the story of Christmas than through the love of a child for their favourite toy? Love so strong that it can bring life to the very toys themselves, The Velveteen Rabbit is one such toy and his story is one of discovery, affection, and adventure as he strives to become Real.

 

Honourable Mentions

Here are a couple of honourable mentions that could make the perfect gift for the bookworms in your life, young and old.

The Twelve Birds of Christmas – Stephen Moss

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Inspired by and structured like a Christmas carol, comes the exploration into the place that birds hold rooted into our culture, history and landscape. From naturalist Stephen Moss comes this beautiful celebration of ornithological festivity.

Hercule Poirot’s Christmas – Agatha Christie

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Nothing spoils Christmas like a murder, and after a not-so-pleasant family reunion, it is up to the infamous detective Poirot to find the culprit. Another of Agatha Christie’s capturing stories is perfect for anyone looking for a bit of suspense this Christmas.

 

And so, concludes this year’s Christmas reading guide. For some more ideas on how what to read check out some of our other book blogs, and don’t forget, once you are done reading why not earn some money back by selling your books using our handy app.

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