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  • Louise Ellis-Barrett

A Pre-Christmas Celebration in Books!


How do you feel about the run up to Christmas? Does it fill you with joy at the excitement that Christmas brings or terror at the thought of all that still needs to be achieved?

Well fear not for we can help out, in a small degree by suggesting some calming reading time with your children and some possible ideas for books you can buy them that will keep them very happy and contented.

Of course Christmas is all about the birth of a new baby, so why not celebrate another birthday this year? Whose I hear you ask. Well it is The Grinch and he is 60.

How The Grinch Stole Christmas features perhaps one of Dr Seuss’ most distinctive characters, green and grumpy and most certainly not a lover of the festive season so why not learn how Christmas and the Grinch get along by sharing this story? If you are a real fan of Dr Seuss you will additionally love that in order to truly celebrate the Grinch’s birthday there is a very special anniversary edition which comes complete with book and matching slipcase as well as a very special introductory note. A very special and very enjoyable read and a lovely way to bring Christmas into your house this year. (HarperCollins)

Then … having got yourself and the children into the mood there are more books for you to enjoy. If it is Christmas in particular that you would like to enjoy then you could try Bonny Becker’s A Christmas for Bear. Bear has never experienced Christmas and has to lots to learn, with the help of mouse will he get there? With a good balance of text and illustration, this latter done by Kady McDonald Denton, this Walker book is a delight to share.

We Wish for a Monster Christmas by Sue Fliess (Sterling Books) is brilliant fun. It is a book into which lots of thought has clearly gone for the text not only rhymes (and makes you laugh) but can be sung along to We Wish to a Merry Christmas. If you have ever imagined what your home would be like with a monster in residence wonder no longer for Claudia Ranucci’s illustrations are about to demonstrate in glorious technicolour!

The 12 Sleighs of Christmas (Chronicle Kids) is a very clever countdown to the big day and a very modern take on a traditional carol. Written by Sherri Duskey Rinker to be read aloud this is a chaotic and hilarious story treating children to a whole new view of Santa’s toy factory and the build up to Christmas for he and his elves. With delightfully detailed illustrations by Jake Parker there is much to enjoy.

Trying to avoid being too Christmassy too soon? You may want to try one of these from our seasonal selection –

From Sterling books a lovely selection –

Mice Skating by Annie Silvestro and illustrated by Teagan White (Sterling Books) introduces the reader to a mouse who is just a little bit different, and her adventures.

Willa and the Bear by Philomena O’Neill takes us into a snowy landscape, off we go on a sled ride, but when bear gets lost a new adventure begins to unfold.

Goodnight Little Bot by Karen Kaufman Orloff with illustration in a gloriously bright palette is the perfect accompaniment to bedtimes and will encourage little ones to get there all the sooner to share this charming story.

Rocket Shoes is a story by Sharon Skinner celebrating the power of moving words delightfully and merrily illustrated by Ward Jenkins.

Walker books have also sent me some marvelous titles –

Snowboy and the Last Tree Standing by Hiawyn Oram, illustrated by Birgitta Sif (Walker) has a been given such gentle treatment by its illustrator that the pages positively glow and as for the story well what is not to love about stories of bravery, heroism and friendship.

Jane Ray’s Cinderella is the most spectacular version of this classic fairytale that I have seen for quite some time. I am not sure if this is a book to read or just enjoy and marvel at. Open up and you will see why – in six three dimensional scenes the story comes to life with side flaps to lift for the words to accompany the cut through backdrops this is a book to treasure, the perfect stocking filler?

For something a little different read Lerryn Korda’s How Monty Found His Magic and see if you too can find your very own magic. Discover just how special you and your talents are and how important friends are too in this touching story.

Now, I don’t want the older readers among you to feel left out and I have the perfect book for you. This made me smile, feel warm inside and reminded me of some very classic

tales with its clever twists and turns. The title? Astrid the Unstoppable by Maria Parr moved and delighted me and is set to become a classic, get your hands on a copy and meet the strong willed, strong minded Astrid, her friends old and new and possibly an enemy or two … be prepared to be swept off your feet! (This one also Walker Books)

#Christmas #Grinch #DrSeuss #BonnyBecker #WalkerBooks #KadyMcDonaldDenton #SueFliess #SterlingBooks #ClaudiaRanucci #ChronicleKids #SherriDuskeyRinker #AnnieSilvestro #TeaganWhite #PhilomenaONeill #KarenKaufmanOrloff #SharonSkinner #WardJenkins #HiawynOram #BirgittaSif #JaneRay #LerrynKorda #MariaParr #JakeParker #Birthdays #HarperCollinsChildrensBooks

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