Curling up beside the fire with a basket filled to the brim with our favorite holiday books is one of the most treasured traditions that our family enjoys together during Advent and Christmas. Every year, I love adding one or two new titles to our library, even though the children never tire of hearing the "old" ones over and over again. All of the stories on our list are picture books geared toward younger children, however, don't be surprised if your older children take an interest in them too!
This list does not include traditional tales such as The Nutcracker, the St. Nicholas Story or the biblical stories that accompany the Jesse tree. You may find that these, and several other "obvious" selections, are missing from the list (I didn't include every book in our basket), but I hope that you find a new title that sparks your interest!
* All of the titles listed below are linked up to Amazon for ease of reference. However, I highly encourage you to patronize your local bookshop or Catholic/Christian online retailer first, if you can! One of my favorites is Adoremus Books and Gifts.
Please be sure to sign up for our GIVEAWAY that begins today, Monday, November 25th and ends Monday, December 2nd.
Three lucky winners will be randomly selected to win a book of their choice from the list! I will announce the winner on Monday, so be sure to check back here to see if you are a winner!
- 1. -
Christmas Day in the Morning tells the story of a young boy who is motivated by a deep love for his father to find him the very best Christmas present.
- 2. -
The Carpenter's Gift is a lovely story of generosity, hope and paying it forward.
- 3. -
Mr. Willoughby's Christmas Tree is delightfully humorous, a classic book that encourages good stewardship and sharing.
- 4. -Wild Christmas Reindeer. Brett's beautifully illustrated story has a lot to say about the importance of treating others with respect.
- 5. -Song of the Stars is a wonderful telling of the truth that everything on heaven and earth is created to praise the Lord.
- 6. -Room for a Little One A perfectly sweet story of the nativity that your youngest children will especially enjoy.
- 7. -
A Certain Small Shepherd is a Christmas story set in the Appalachian mountains. It shines with themes of kindness, generosity, the treasure of family and hope in miracles.
- 8. -
A Very Merry Christmas, from the Classic Pooh series, is just what you would expect, a story of friendship, sharing and of course the traditional illustrations of characters we've all grown to love.
- 9. -
A Christmas Carol is a story many of us are familiar with, perhaps through the television events shown during the holiday season. The story becomes even richer when read aloud to the accompaniment of the beautiful illustrations in this edition.
- 10. -
Christmas Mouse in the House Every Christmas book basket should have at least one lift-the-flap story in it! This one's text is charming and illustrations adorable.
- 11. -
Christmas in the Big Woods The beauty of the Christmas season shines bright and pure through Laura's expressive stories which are focused on family unity and the immaterial blessings of the holidays.
- 12. -
This is the Stable Gentle rhyming and sweet illustrations make this depiction of the nativity a favorite that our little ones ask for over and over each year.
- 13. -Christmas From Heaven If you or anyone in your house enjoys history, this is the perfect Christmas story for you!
- 14. -
The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey. Last year's new addition to our basket, and easily are favorite story of the season. Get your tissues ready, it's quite a tenderhearted tale!
- 15. -
The Twelve Days of Christmas by Laurel Long. After seeing the breathtaking illustrations, I wondered why I waited so long to purchase this little treasure based upon the traditional song of the same title.
- 16. -Good King Wenceslas is one of my all time favorite stories to read during Advent. The illustrations are magnificent (boys will especially appreciate the grandeur of the king and his knights).
- 17. -I don't think I'd be exaggerating if I said that I've read The Christmas Cookie Sprinkle Snitcher at least 100 times since we've added it to our collection. The boys just love it! The illustrations are hilarious, and even I cannot hold back the giggles!
- 18. -Bear Stays Up for Christmas is an adorable story about the joy of serving others. Kids will easily pick up on the themes of friendship, thoughtfulness, sharing, joy, sacrifice and encouragement.
- 19. -The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree A beautiful story is made even more poignant when it's words are matched with equally beautiful illustrations. This is one of those stories, which also ranks high on our list of favorites!
- 20. -Tonight You Are My Baby is a gentle story of the birth of Christ from Mary's perspective. It is beautifully written with a tenderness and warmth.
- 21. -Father and Son A Nativity Story is a tender story of St. Joseph and his overwhelming feelings toward raising the son of God. I love hearing my husband read it to the boys every year.
- 22. -The Gift of the Magi is a thoughtful demonstration of the exemplary virtues of generosity, sacrifice, and self-gift lovingly enacted through two individuals during the Christmas season. Though the text will be too advanced for little ones, if they are patient listeners, the language can be simplified and explained as the story is read aloud.
- 23. -Who is Coming to Our House? is a perfect story for Advent. I added it to our basket a few years ago (read about it here!) and has been read dozens of times since then.
- 24. -Great Joy by Kate DiCamillo is a precious of a little girl whose heart is awakened to the needs of the less fortunate, and the measures she takes to extend kindness to them.
- 25. -Why Christmas Trees Aren't Perfect was one of the first books I bought for our library many years ago. It encourages discussion on why Christ came into the world and how we can model His self-donating love to others.