Friday, December 5, 2008

Holiday Recommends for Kids!

Whew! The holidays are upon us! We hope you have a happy and safe holiday season!

Today's post is from bookseller Jackie:

There are a LOT of great new holiday books out for the little ones (and really, who are we kidding, grownups like them too--EVERYONE is a kid at holiday time, right!). Here are a few that caught my eye and heart this year:

Gingerbread Friends by Jan Brett

Jan Brett's illustrations are what make this book. Add a pop-up surprise ending and the recipe for gingerbread running through the margins and you've got a holiday inner for the 6 and under crowd. (Or folks like me who just love gingerbread stuff no matter what season it is!) .

Christmas Cookies by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

A delightful holiday vocabulary lesson with charming illustrations by Jane Dyer. There's even a recipe for Christmas Cookies at the very end :)

The Lump of Coal by Lemony Snickett

I was sold by the second sentence: "Miracles are like pimples, because once you start looking for them you find more than you ever dreamed you'd see."

A bit of charcoal wants to be an artist, or at least get involved in a barbecue. Funny with that lovely Snickety snark to it, but still a great holiday story!

All I Want for Christmas by Deborah Zemke

Cute critters asking for one special thing for Christmas--clever, simple. Nice holiday book.

Amazing Peace by Maya Angelou

This book is based on a poem performed by Angelou at the 2005 White House tree lighting ceremony. The paintings by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher are truly amazing. One line of the poem especially captured me: "It is what we have hungered for. Not just the absence of war. But true Peace." That is truly what the greatest world hunger today is.

A Very Marley Christmas by John Grogan

From the text: "But Marley, being Marley, always ended up on the wrong side of right." Everyone's favorite wild child puppy experiences Christmas for the first time--can he help it if he didn't understand what the tree in the living room was for (among other mishaps)? Humorous illustrations by Richard Caudrey are the icing on the cake.

Mrs Claus Explains It All by Elsbeth Claus (aka Christi Love)

LOVE this book! Love it, love it, love it. These are well thought out and extremely creative answers to kids questions about Santa and friends. Watch out for Undercover Elves or any of the other clever surprises that go into making the North Pole work. Kids will love it, and adults will appreciate the subtle but ever present humor woven in.

One Hundred Shining Candles by Janet Lynn

Sweet story about two children from a poor family determined to make Christmas special. Lovely illustrations by Lindsay Grater. Reminded me of Laura Ingals Wilder's sweet and simple books.

The Christmas Rose by Sepp Bauer

This story was originally published circa 1920 as a sort of advent calendar. It got lost over time, but was rediscovered in an antiquarian bookshop in Switzerland in 2006, along with the original illustrations by Germany's famous Else Wenz-Vietor. Based on German Christmas traditions, it's a very sweet tale about two woodman's children who want nothing for Christmas but for their ailing father to be well again. Saint Nicholas (who visits homes Dec. 6 in Germany) tells them that the scent of the White Winter Rose has the ability to cure all illness, but to get it they must go on a long, dangerous and difficult journey the Winter Land as The Winter King is the only one that grows it. Helped by many woodland and fantastical creatures, the children have an amazing adventure and learn the true meaning of love and Christmas spirit.

The Dog Who Saved Santa by True Kelley

It seems that Santa was quite a slacker as a youngster. Fortunately he had Rodney the dog, who through persistence and cleverness, "bootcamps" Santa into the fine, jolly, hard working and caring fellow he is today.


I also want to share a fantastic story a co-worker told me. Her nieces and nephews have SO many Christmas books (a side effect of having an Aunty in the book biz, among other things, lol) that her sister in law has created a tradition. Mid November she wraps each and every one of those books, and beginning on Thanksgiving day, the kids get to pick out two of them a day to open and read. They've got the fun of opening "presents" as well as the joy of rediscovering old favorites, plus some great family time to boot. I think this is just one of the coolest things ever. Think about starting a tradition in your own family!



Anonymous said...

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Jackie said...

Thanks so much Susan! We're looking forward to more comments from you!