In America, it’s the week after Thanksgiving, a holiday where we get to stuff our faces with delicious food and look at the things we are thankful for. Immediately following, the Christmas festivities have begun! I love the Christmas season, however I am not a fan of starting it too early… my roommates are guilty of jumping the gun early and have been trying to decorate the house since the day after Halloween. I managed to hold them off till this last weekend but my house is on its way to be decorated for the holidays. As we approach the holiday season, I am always looking for novels that will help to put me in the holiday mood. Whether it is a short story collection, a re-telling of a classic, or a classic itself, there is something for everyone here. I hope these help you get into the Christmas/Holiday Mood:
Short Story Collection
My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories by Stephanie Perkins – a collection of short stories written by some of the best modern YA writers. Ranging from Rainbow Rowell, Kelly Link, and Ally Carter, there is a wide variety of stories from New Years kisses to Christmas Eve drama to Chanukah festivities, there is a little something for everyone to help get you into the holiday spirit. I’ll be reading this again this year before bed with a nice cup of tea.
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens – If you haven’t heard of this story then you may have been living under a rock. The story that helped to re-invent Christmas in Victorian England and is considered a classic when it comes to Christmas stories. A tale of Scrooge, a shrewd business man, who is visited by 3 ghosts on Christmas Eve to help him change his life around before it’s too late. Funny, heartwarming, and a story full of the true spirit of Christmas.
A Holiday Re-Telling
The Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand – A modern re-telling of A Christmas Carol without such a happy ending for Holly. Funny, and a great modern twist on a Christmas favorite.
Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe by Melissa de la Cruz – Are you surprised that I managed to get Jane Austen adaptation on this list?? I didn’t think so. With gender swapping rolls, this funny, holiday festive twist on Jane’s classic novel will give you the same love of P&P with a bit of Christmas cheer.
Hiddensee: A Tale of the Once and Future Nutcracker by Gregory Maguire – Gregory is known for his unique twists on classic stories and this is no different from his other work. With a view of the Nutcracker, and the man who made him, this is a unique approach to a tale that may not be as well-known as other Christmas stories.
Mr. Dickens and His Carol by Samantha Silva – A fictional approach to the main who helped ” invent Christmas”, the reader is able to see the thought process of how Charles Dickens brought his favorite story to life.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss – I mean… need I say more. This story is a Christmas staple and is often part of necessity of Christmas classics one would read during the holiday season. The movie adaptation with Jim Carrey is one of my favorites, incase you wanted a movie to go along with the book.
Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg – A story of a young, skeptical, boy who travels to the North Pole to meet Santa on a magical train called The Polar Express. Another Christmas classic, and worth reading closer to Christmas Eve.
The Nutcracker by ETA Hoffman – Most widely known for this story’s adaptation into a classic ballet, The Nutcracker has been dazzling people since the beginning. A story of a girl, and her toy nutcracker as he comes to life in Christmas Eve. With sword fights, magical fairies, and the Christmas spirit, this is a treat for any reader.
The Night Before Christmas by Charles Santore – My mother use to read this to use on Christmas Eve, so I naturally felt inclined to add it to this list. The title kind of gives away the plot of the story but a classic to read before preparing for Santa to arrive.
The Origins of Christmas by Joseph F. Kelly – A perfect addition to your Christmas collection if you are looking for the history of Christmas and why we do what we do during this holiday season. Engaging and fascinating read for those non-fiction lovers.
For the Grinch in your Life
Skipping Christmas by John Grisham – A hilarious book for those of us who aren’t really into the Christmas spirit and refer a different route to “celebrating” the holidays. If you consider yourself a bit of a Grinch, then you will need to pick up this funny fictional work.
Last Christmas in Paris by Hazel Gaynor & Heather Webb – Switching back between modern-day, and 1912, this book is one that will tug the heart-strings. During war, Christmas doesn’t feel the same. Evie, her brother Will and his best friend Thomas plan to spend the holidays together since they assume the war will be over by Christmas. But as history tells, that didn’t happen and the three are stuck in the struggle of doing what is right and following their dreams, or doing what society and their family believes is best for them. If you can’t escape this holiday season, pick up this novel to transform you to Paris.
I hope you enjoyed this list, and you have found a few new books to pick up to get you into the Christmas spirit. What are some of your favorite books to read during the holidays? Be sure to leave a comment below on your favorite Christmas books!
Happy Holidays and Happy Reading!!