For the past several years, I have done the 25 books of Christmas. You wrap 25 books and from Dec 1- Dec 25, you unwrap each book and read it aloud. It’s like a paper chain countdown, but with for book lovers, its the perfect paper chain. The biggest set back I have with this is the amount of trash accumulated. Well, that and finding 25 books that can work with Christmas and be read in a night. One year I wrapped them all in old newspaper but that was still a lot to gather when you don’t read the daily paper. And to be honest, once the ballet performance hits us in December, the nightly readings take back shelf and it doesn’t happen and we get out of the habit. Well, I decided to choose 3 books we’ll read this season. We can do it as we work on our Christmas projects and some of them are pretty small that I can easily see it being read in a week. So, let me jump right to the books. The first two are a childhood favorite and I love them every year.
The Lion in the Box by Marguerite De Angeli : Out of Print and ridiculously expensive on Ebay, Amazon, and Barnes and Noble. Check your local library or GoogleBooks.
BEAUTIFUL story about 5 children and a recent widowed mother trying to create a cherished Christmas season. The story tells about a family working together and sharing struggles as well as good memories together. A perfect Hallmark setting. On Christmas day while mama is away working, the family receives a big surprise. Wonderful way to share the Christmas season and show how fortunate we are today. One of my favorite scenes is where Mama brings home butcher paper and shows them how to create Christmas stars and the instructions are clear enough for the reader to do. So, guess what we are doing this year!
The Quiet Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
There are three Christmas stories included in this, but I only remember the one about the orphan adopted for a servant position for a wealthy family. Her heart to give what she can to the family for Christmas and then the return of the family to find the little worn out servant surrounded by little gifts for her new family and the love shown to her the following day. 2 other stories are included but I guess you’ll have to read the book to find out about those characters, as will I…
Moore’s Code by Chautona Havig
When a mischievous and naughty little boy figures out that Santa is not whom everyone believes he is. He takes matters into his own hands and decides to kidnap Santa and keep all the toys for himself. The highest compliment I can give you about this book is that, at the time, my eight year old devoured this book and loved it. It was the first bigger book he read, the fastest he’s read anything of this size, and all voluntarily. I grew up knowing that Santa died years ago and Santa know longer exists, but that doesn’t mean that some of the stories are really fun to enjoy and this one is a delight to our family. It does help that the author is our beloved Bestemor AKA Grandma.
Now, these are also excellent Christmas selections and should be included, and if nothing else, are more easily accessible anywhere.
The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis. A Classic for sure. Why Christmas? Well, because when four children enter Narnia, it is always winter and never Christmas. But, as the White Witch begins to loose her power, Father Christmas makes an appearance and gives the children gifts that will forever change their lives. You can also see the movie adaptation here (and they did a good job).
A Christmas Surprise by Ruth Moore I remember reading this quite often and enjoy it a great deal…. but to be honest, the only thing I remember is this large pageant that is going to be put on and all the great deal everyone goes to do it grandly and well. I remember a sheep scene. I think it’s time to borrow it again and read it. I believe there is a sequel and it could possibly be a trilogy.
The two books are a perfect Advent reading. There is two more: Bartholomew Passage and Ishtar’s Odessey, that is a great addition but we don’t own those yet. However, Jotham’s Journey and Tabitha’s Travels are a great enjoyment during the Advent season leading up to Christmas day. Each character deals with their own personal growth and is involved with the birth of Christ. Jotham is seaching for his family. He encounters the main characters of the Christmas story such as the wise men and shepherds. Tabitha helps Zachariah and Elizabeth and Mary before she gives birth and weaves her story within this beautiful set up.
And I HAD to include Louisa May Alcott, An Old Fashion Thanksgiving. I think because we start the holiday season at Thanksgiving it just fits right in with our annual stack of books to read during this holiday season. When the parents are called away to help a relative, the elder children decide to create a happy thanksgiving in their parent’s absence. There was movie made based on this story and that can be found here.
Well, there you go.