Christmas time is always fun to read books at. This list are of my Christmas Book Reviews that I’ve read with my son.
“Madeline’s Christmas” was published after Ludwig Bemelmans passed away, it had been published as a book insert in McCall’s magazine in 1956 and as a book in 1985. The story itself is a curious Christmas tale about a rug seller who brings a little magic to Madeline and her friends. My toddler sat for the whole thing and laughed at many of the rhymes, which if you have read others in the Madeline series you will know are awesome. If you are working on rhyming words check this and the rest of the series out!
“Babar and Father Christmas” by Jean De Brunhoff was one of my very favorite Christmas stories as a child. As an adult, I have had some great belly laughs at some of it’s writing which I still think is awesome. Babar goes looking for Father Christmas because he wants to ask him to visit Elephant country. He searches all over Paris and finally ends up in the north pole and finds after much effort Father Christmas. I love the details in this book, as a child I would lay looking at the pictures of Santa’s workshop and imagine what visiting it would be like. As an adult I appreciate the smallest details like how Father Christmas’s flying machine (not a sled) has P.N #1 on it, meaning of course Pere Noel #1.
“Not Until Christmas Walter!” by Eileen Christelow is a cute book that captures the relationship between a girl and her four-legged best friend! Walter, the dog is eager to get at his present before the big day when he opens it before Christmas he ends up in the doghouse! It takes a few events to earn his position as a best friend back but he finds a way! The book is broken into 3 chapters and would be a great book for children in the gap between picture books and chapter books.
“Din Dan Don It’s Christmas” by Janina Domanska is one of a kind. The books follow the pilgrimage to the manger to see the infant Jesus. It starts with a single duck playing bagpipes. But it builds on itself until they spot the manger and the infant Jesus wakes. The story is simple because there is no need for lots of text, the illustrations are amazing. Every page looks like a cross between a stained glass window and an ornate mosaic in an Orthodox church somewhere in Eastern Europe. My son exclaimed “WOW” many times as we turned the pages of this book. I know I let out a gasp or two as well, simply beautiful! When I did a search for a photo I could not find this book in print, so you may not be able to find it in store, try your library though!
“Merry Christmas Ollie” by Olivier Dunrea captures the feelings of children leading up to the holidays…wait…wait…wait… I remember those feelings well. Patience is a hard thing to learn for big people, but it’s almost impossible to be patient when you are waiting for something as magical as Christmas when you are little. This book is a great vehicle for talking about being patient, and the little geese will enchant you!
“What Is Christmas?” by Michelle Medlock Adams is a great book for little children about Christmas. It touches on all the fun and cultural aspects of Christmas in a positive way. But it reminds the readers that really it’s about Jesus’ birth. I like the book because it doesn’t make the rest of the traditions out to be wrong or bad. It explains that the holiday’s origin in a simple matter of fact way.
“If You Take A Mouse To The Movies” by Laura Numeroff is a favorite in our house. I love it because like how your house transforms around the holidays the ever popular “If You Give A Mouse A Cookie” transforms too. Every page is “decorated” with something from Christmas trees, red and green popcorn buckets, and snowmen. If you aren’t familiar with this series of books the text is cause and effect. Each page taking the mouse and a little boy from different holiday situations like listening to Christmas carols, making ornaments and of course going to the movies on a winter day.
“Merry Christmas, Mouse!” by Laura Numeroff is an adorable little Christmas counting book. Most of the praise should really be on Felicia Bond the illustrator because the pictures take the cake on this one. The book follows the mouse as he decorates the Christmas tree, 1 Star… 2 angels… etc… It’s a perfect to read and then count the ornaments on your own tree. After reading it my son and I found 4 balls and 3 trains on our own tree.
“Mooseltoe” by Margie Palantini is a funny holiday story with the characters from Moosestash. This time Moose is set on making Christmas perfectly perfect, only oops he forgot the tree! Luckily he offers up himself and doesn’t do too bad a job as a Christmas tree! This book was too long for my toddler but older preschoolers and even school age kids will love the humor and fun illustration
“Little Tree” by Chris Racshka is another awesome find. I love this book, it’s another visually amazing book. My son was much more into the pictures that are so packed full of fun details that they steal the show. The story inspired by the E.E. Cummings poem by the same name follows a little tree who has big dreams of becoming a Christmas tree. I think this book is great! Especially for children who want to know where the trees in the lots in a city come from.
“Hurry, Santa!” by Julia Sykes is an okay book. I wanted to like it more than I did. The pictures are cute, the idea of Santa being late for Christmas morning has a lot of potential and the author tried. It just never gelled for me. I would still check it out from the library and test it out with your child. But I won’t be adding this to my must buy list.
“McDuff’s New Friend” by Rosemary Wells was a classroom classic in my last year teaching. I think I read it every day for 3 weeks straight and then a few weeks after Christmas too! In it, McDuff the little Westie dog saves the day finding Santa stuck in the snow! I love Susan Jeffer’s retro illustrations and the little details like the dad feeding the baby, the doggy sweaters the McDuff wears in the snow, and how Santa gave them all gifts they needed in the story.
Did I miss any books in my Christmas Book Reviews here? Comment below, or share on my Facebook page!
For more quick tips on helping your child learn to read check out my book; Raising A Rock-Star Reader. It is packed with fun ideas for families, book lists, and advice for parents.