Our Favorite Christmas Books

Here's an updated list of our favorite, most-played with, delivered-to-your-doorstep, Mom-approved toys.

And here are our favorite games.
Here are some great teen gift ideas.

My favorite are the classic ones from my childhood, and the Nativity books with beautiful pictures.
I think the books we grow up with are so impressionable-they form the images in our mind of what Santa looks like, and Jesus in the manger, and elves, and the wise men.  Does it seem overly-thoughtful that I want to "choose" these images for my children?  I think it might, but I still choose carefully.
The Night Before Christmas -The one illustrated by Leaonard Weisgard on the right is my favorite.
Frosty the Snowman- I am working on getting my hands on the vintage Golden Book version of this story, but this one with vintagey-illustrations will do.

I have a Golden Book collection and a few more (like the Frosty one) on my wishlist.

My mom bought this years ago (she is the best book picker-outer) for my kids and they love this story.  Beautiful illustrated and just the right amount of words in this version of the classic fairy tale.

I love this book because it is tells the traditional story, with beautiful illustrations.  

Another beautifully illustrated book.  Mothers will love this book because Mary tells the story.

We love I Spy books.  They hurt my eyes but they are also so addicting.  Once I start a page I have to finish all the searching.

and Janey's favorite is the second Santa Mouse book:
Santa Mouse, Where Are You?

All of the great Little House snowy Christmas stories in one book, can't get any better than that!
I love this reminder of simpler times, with less "buying", more "creating", and better "giving".

I have always loved this story since I was a little girl. This is a beautifully illustrated book!

The story with all it's history in one book, appeals to older children and adults.  This really brings depth to the story and it all makes more sense with historical reference. 

(this copy with Barbara Cooney is out of print, but it can be bought used)
We borrowed this book from the library and I promptly bought it I loved it so much. Definitely a "girl book" with a doll, and an orphan girl and a family finally found.  I would have loved loved loved this book as a child. 

I can't get through this book without crying.  
It is my favorite Christmas book ever.  The illustrations are beautiful, and the story of a son giving the gift of service for his hard working father is even more beautiful.  

(Another one that must be bought used.)
I think we have every Gyo Fujikawa book because I am in love with her illustrations, especially her prolific babies.  This book is chock full of those babies.

I feel like I've read this book 1,000 times in the last 2 weeks. So cute, and a favorite around here and a great message of sharing to boot.  


  1. What a wonderful list! May I also recommend The Yule Tomte and the Little Rabbits by Ulf Stark? That's one that I found at the library and then bought. It is relatively new, 2015. It is good for Advent as well as Christmas, and even features a cameo by Santa Lucia!

  2. Going to add a few of these to my Christmas book collection! Thanks for the lovely suggestions! Mr. Willowby is a favorite in my house too right now, 1000 times sounds about right!

  3. Going to add a few of these to my Christmas book collection! Thanks for the lovely suggestions! Mr. Willowby is a favorite in my house too right now, 1000 times sounds about right!

  4. Love this list! Our kids really liked Christmas in the Big Woods: https://www.amazon.com/Christmas-Woods-Little-House-Picture/dp/0064434877. I love Mary Engelbriet's illustrations so her Night Before Christmas book is so much fun.

  5. I love your lists. Thank you for sharing! ...We have the same taste in books! Many of those are our favorites, too. Some others on our favorites list: The Little Match Girl (illustrated by Rachel Isadora), The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey, The year of the perfect Christmas tree (Gloria Houston), The Twelve Days of Christmas (illustrated by Gennady Spirin), This is the Stable (Cynthia Cotten), Cobweb Christmas (Shirley Climo), The Legend of Old Befana (Tomie de Paola), The Clown of God (Tomie de Paola) (this one might bring tears), When Joseph was born in Bethlehem (by Joseph Brickey)--beautiful illustrations of the Biblical story of Jesus' birth, and The Mansion by Henry Van Dyke

    1. Thank you Emily! I ordered The Little Match Girl this year, but I will look into the other ones too!

  6. Great list! I love Mr Willoby's Christmas Tree

  7. Ooooooh, a Gyo Fujikawa book I've never seen! We have two and they are my 18 month olds favorite. Such sweet babies! Holly and Ivy is one of our favorites too, but I always cry. Have you read A Episode of Sparrows by Rumer Godden? I think you would really like it too. Merry Christmas to you, thanks for sharing your life with us!

  8. I know it's late, but I thought I'd share a few of my kids' favorites. "When Santa was a baby" - my little girl loves this one! "Merry Christmas Stinky Face", What Santa Can't do", "Santa Clause the world's number one toy expert". My bigger boys really like "Santa in Space" (it's also printed as The Christmas Aliens - but it's the same book)and "How to talk to Santa". And my favorites are "Christmas Cookies" a tiny board book with mice - I love the simple story, "Christmas in Noisy Village", and "Merry Christmas, Strega Nona"