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Settle Down with a Good Holiday Read

There are many books available with a holiday theme. Here are a few of my kid and grown-up holiday favorites.

The frantic pace of holiday shopping, wrapping, cooking, and partying can be offset with a good book. We look forward to pulling out our traditional family holiday favorites and I seek out holiday books for my nightstand.

We have a gift bag stuffed with traditional holiday books. Every year when we do our holiday decorating, that bag is placed under our tree and we spend some time during the weeks leading up to Christmas looking through them. On Christmas Eve, we each pick out a favorite and read them out loud. Here are some of the favorites in our bag:

  • Auntie Claus, by Elise Primavera (this is the book I always pick to read on Christmas Eve)
  • Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg
  • A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
  • Twas the Night Before Christmas, by Clement Clarke Moore
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas, by Dr. Seuss
  • Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, by Robert L. May

I also love Jeff Guinn’s series of books that started with The Autobiography of Santa Claus. With a mixture of fantasy and history, Guinn gives an account of the life of Santa Claus. His follow-up books, How Mrs. Claus Saved Christmas and The Great Santa Search continue the magic in the same engaging story-telling tradition. These books make great read-a-louds to the kids in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

Many popular novelists write holiday themed books. I look at these authors in December when I'm ready for a holiday read:

  • Author Debbie Macomber admits she puts up 5 Christmas trees and 37 nativity scenes each Christmas holiday. She also writes a Christmas book every year. For 2011, she introduces 1225 Christmas Tree Lane.
  • Richard Paul Evans has several holiday books including The Christmas Box, Finding Noel, The Gift, and The Christmas List.
  • Richard Siddoway started writing holiday books with the The Christmas Wish (later adapted into a CBS movie). Twelve Tales of Christmas, Christmas of the Cherry Snow, and The Christmas Quest are a few of his other titles.
  • Donna VanLiere has 7 holiday books, including The Christmas Shoes, later made into a TV movie starring Rob Lowe.
  • James Patterson has joined the Christmas genre. He has a new book out for kids, SantaKid and my book club is currently reading his newest holiday book, The Christmas Wedding.
  • Jason F. Wright started a movement several years ago when he released The Christmas Jars. He has since added several other Christmas books to his collection.

Did I miss any of your favorite holiday reads?

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