Different ones have asked for more read aloud ideas, especially my very favorites, so I thought I would list them by age (today—ten or so and up) and by category (i.e. “Bible-related”; traditions; devotional; etc.) with *** by my “very-most-favorite-if-we-only-read-a-handful-of-christmas-books-this-year-this-would-be-one-of-them”! Hope this helps you as you prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ with your sweet children.
Note: Many of the books on this list make for wonderful devotionals for anybody—not just for read alouds!
***Wouldn’t want to go a Christmas without it
*Good enough to make it on my list!
Note: I have included “out of print” ones because you can often pick them up used or at the library.
Note: Every time I review books, I forget to include this note. It is actually not proper to place quotation marks around book titles (major works). However, when I post to the blog, my italics (the proper way to note book titles) go away. Thus, I surround book titles with quotation marks on here. Maybe I will get more savvy as I blog longer, but so many things about the internet/blogging elude me!
*”One Incredible Moment: Celebrating the Majesty of the Manger” by Max Lucado I do various Christmas "devotional" types of books with the family each year. I love different writers' inspirational thoughts on Christmas. This year I am doing Max Lucado's "One Incredible Moment: Celebrating the Majesty of the Manger" with the two little guys in the mornings. Very cool book! http://www.christianbook.com/incredible-moment-celebrating-the-majesty-manger/max-lucado/9781404104044/pd/104046?event=CF
**”Come and Behold Him…An Invitation to Christmas Worship” by Jack Hayford. I am re-reading this one aloud this year—and I read it fifteen years ago to my olders too. It is so inspirational and worshipful. http://www.jackhayford.org/products16-314/ComeandBeholdHim
*“”The Case for Christmas: A Journalist Investigates the Identity of the Child in the Manger” by Lee Strobel--Just started a new Christmas book that I highly recommend for those with older kids who want "devotional" type of Christmas reading that is on the more serious side: Case for Christmas by Lee Strobel. We have a lot of his other books; some of his dvd's; and some audios--but this one is just the perfect size for Christmas reading and toting around. Warning: Read small portions at a time; it’s fairly heady. http://www.christianbook.com/case-christmas-lee-strobel/9780310254768/pd/54762
***”Cosmic Christmas” by Max Lucado. We have read this short (sixty pages without much text on each page?) almost every year for the last six or eight as we drive to a relatives since it only takes an hour or so to read aloud. It tells the story of Christ’s birth from heaven’s viewpoint—with Satan and angels battling. An extremely cool nativity story that our teens love. http://www.thomasnelson.com/consumer/product_detail.asp?sku=0849915309&title=Cosmic_Christmas
**”The Birth” by Gene Edwards; similar to “Cosmic Christmas” but lengthier and in more detail. Gene Edwards is a master storyteller. http://www.amazon.com/Birth-Gene-Edwards/dp/0940232960c
***”A Christmas Longing” by Joni Ereckson Tada. My favorite Christmas devotional—short entries, very poignant and moving. Love it!
“Traditions and More” Types of Books
**“Stories Behind the Great Traditions of Christmas” by Ace Collins; I have read from this ever Christmas for years and years. We never read the entire book—just a dozen entries or so each year. We use it in part in place of our history during December—it is so interesting!
**”Stories Behind the Best-Loved Songs of Christmas” by Ace Collins
Instead of our regular history unit studies during December, we have always done various Christmas tradition books. This one is one that we have used often (and are using this year). It is so interesting to learn about the history of customs, songs, and traditions. This is a good book for Christian families with older children (say, ten or eleven and up).
**”Christ in the Carols: Thirty-One Devotionals for Christmas and Advent” by Christopher and Melodie Lane; more devotional than educational, this book about Christmas carols has shorter entries than the previous one. It is a beautiful little book.
**”Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader: Christmas Collection” Portable Press; Yes, Uncle John’s! This is like all of the other Uncle John books—informative essays about everything, except this one is Christmas only. Such interesting tidbits—secular and Christian about Christmas past and present. We get a kick out of this one!
“Other Christmas Stories or ‘Set at Christmastime Type Stories”
*”The Max Lucado Christmas Collection” by Max Lucado; just got this one in the mail today! Was recommended by a friend—and I love Max Lucado’s writing style, so I’m sure we’ll love it!
**“A Christmas Reader: A Collection of Family Favorites for the Holiday Season” compiled by Gail Harvey; has many classic stories too. I have read from this one off and on for twenty years!
*”Startling Joy: Seven Magical Stories of Christmas” by James Calvin Schaap re-titled “Finding Christmas: Stories of Startling Joy and Perfect Peace” –a little longer “short stories” than the Christmas in My Heart series, but still filled with heart-warming ones.
**”Christmas in My Heart: A Treasury of Timeless Christmas Stories” compiled and edited by Joe L. Wheeler. One of my favorite Christmas collections is any of the Joe Wheeler Christmas story books. There are so many of them, so there are many out there for sale used too. Check out the extensive list of collections at his site below. These are heart-warming short stories for Christmas read alouds, gift books, and more! (This is the same author I wrote about earlier with the many wonderful “Great Stories Remembered” books.) http://shop.cbn.com/cbn/item.Christmas-in-My-Heart-A-Treasury-of-Timeless-Christmas-Stori.9780842336451.htm
***“Christmas Stories from the Heart” by Alice Gray. One of our top three "Christmas compilation" books. Heart-warming, amazing Christmas stories for family read alouds. I can't recommend this one highly enough for ALL Christian families who love to read and share stories together. (Note: Older editions have different covers. Libraries also carry this one.)
**”A Treasury of Christmas Classics” Harold Shaw Publishers (not in print anymore) –another one with classic stories. Great for literature!