I spent a magical morning reading more than a dozen new Christmas picture books. Three were religious in nature the rest secular, and one was a Christmas/Hanukkah combo story. All were published this year.
Although this is not a comprehensive list of the new Christmas titles, these are the ones I was able to get from my local library. In this collection, I found a few new favorites. They are listed alphabetically by the author’s last name.
A Night of Great Joy
written and illustrated by Mary Englebreit
Sweet rendition of the biblical Christmas story. The children set the stage and put on the play of the first Christmas. Cute pictures showing how young children might put on a simple production of the Christmas story.
The Day Santa Stopped Believing in Harold
written by Mareen Fergus and illustrated by Cale Atkinson
Tundra Books, 2016
Love this new twist on the old ‘I don’t believe in Santa anymore’ syndrome. This time it’s Santa who doesn’t believe… in Harold. He’s discovered that it’s Harold’s mom who writes the letters and Harold’s dad who puts out the milk and cookies. And at Harold’s house, Harold has a few doubts of his own. On Christmas Eve, they both decide to wait up and see if the other is really real. Funny. Sweet. And definitely believable!
written by Marty Rhodes Figley and illustrated by Marty Kelley
Sleeping Bear Press, 2016
Is there anything funnier than underwear? Santa can’t find his special Christmas long johns. He can’t get dressed until he does. Kids will love watching Santa try on all his other pair of underwear. But none of them will do. Finally, Santa finds a special gift from the reindeer… a new pair of long johns as bright as Rudloph’s nose!
The Christmas Fox
written and illustrated by Anik McGary
Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2016
Lovely story and artwork. All the other animals invite Little Fox to go meet the new baby but Little Fox is too busy playing in the snow. The other animals have gifts to bring the baby and Little Fox doesn’t believe he has a gift. But when he decides to go he brings the his joy and the baby smiles!
The Biggest Smallest Christmas Present
written and illustrated by Harriet Muncaster
G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers, 2016
Tiny story that packs a big punch! Clementine is small, very small. She doesn’t think Santa knows how tiny she is because he brings her gifts that are too big. So she sets about to let him know her actual size. Then one year he brings her the biggest gift of all… a giant dollhouse… just perfect for Clementine!
Maple & Willow’s Christmas Tree
written and illustrated by Lori Nichols
Nancy Paulsen Books, 2016
Sisters Maple and Willow spend the day choosing just the right Christmas tree. It’s the best tree in the world, but Maple is allergic. The tree ends up outside and both girls are disappointed. Then in the middle of the night, Willow gets a great idea. She gets up and decorates a most unusual ‘tree’ in their living room.
The Christmas Boot
written by Lisa Wheeler and illustrated by Michael Glean Monroe
Mitten Press, 2016
Beautiful book! Artwork and story work together to tell a wonderful tale of Christmas magic. A lonely old woman finds a single boot in the snow. The one boot becomes two and soon she has everything she needs and more, until the owner of the boot returns. He takes his boot but gives her exactly what she needs.
Run out to your bookstore or library and find a few new favorites of your own.
Merry Christmas and Happy Reading!