7 non-cheesy Christmas books

No offense to cheesy Christmas books.  I love those, too.  But if you’re like me, you can never have enough books, especially kids’ books, especially in the weeks leading up to Christmas.  There are plenty of books out there about elves and Santa, but these are a few of the books that I’ve found to be just truly lovely and enjoyable for both children and adults, while focusing on the true meaning of Christmas.

  1. Saint Francis and the Christmas Donkey


This is a sweet telling of the Christmas story, with some elements of a folk tale, some background on St. Francis, and of course, lots of animals for kiddos who are so inclined.  Perfectly lovely.


2. The Nativity


The text is taken directly from the bible, and my kids enjoyed hearing the language of the actual bible passages in a picture book.  The illustrations are whimsical and artistic, and really make the bible passages come to life.


3. One Starry Night


This is a simple, cute story, showing how all parents love their little ones, and ends in Mary and Joseph watching over Jesus, just as we watch over our children.  This one was all about the illustrations for me- they are bold and modern, yet moving.  I love this one and my kids actually appreciate the artwork, which I found interesting.


4.The Stable Rat


I’m fully aware that this is an obnoxious selection, as I think it’s out of print.  But you guys, the INTERNET, you can find anything there.  And I was able to borrow this from my local library.  It’s so fun and different from everything else out there.  They are children’s Christmas poems, but I found myself enjoying them immensely.  They aren’t rhymey-silly poems, but melodic, soulful verses that aren’t over-the-top Christmas.  If you think your kids won’t like poetry, give it a try.  My kids have blown me away with how much they appreciate and understand the poems I present them with.  This is a wonderful, beautiful book to start with.


5. The Legend of St. Nicholas


Look, we love Santa around here, but I’m also really trying to instill in my kids that St. Nicholas was a real person, a real saint, who was/is pretty awesome in his own right, even without the whole bringing presents down the chimney thing.  This book is a nice introduction to his story and I love the vibrant illustrations.


6.They Followed a Bright Star


This one tells the story of the shepherds as they make their way across the the countryside to follow the star.  They come across many different people and invite them to join, but each has been given a specific task to get ready for Jesus.  I LOVE this story.  It shows kids how each of us has our own special way of preparing to welcome Jesus into our hearts.  I think the message is so special and the illustrations are really special, as well.  One of my favorites.


7. Santa’s Favorite Story51d8lUw5-vL._SY454_BO1,204,203,200_

I had to include this one because it was a childhood favorite, and I love how it lets Santa and the real reason for Christmas come together in a beautiful way.  And I could just stare at the pictures all day.  So pretty, serene, peaceful.


Ok, so tell me, what are some of your favorites?


***Linking up with SQT over at This Ain’t the Lyceum.**

4 thoughts on “7 non-cheesy Christmas books

  1. Elizabeth got ‘Who is Coming to Our House?’ for Christmas last year. It is a board book and we actually read it all year long! It has a sweet rhyme pattern about the animals getting the stable ready for Mary and Joseph. We learned most of the farm animals from reading this book! 🙂

    1. I got something similar for Grace this year, I’ll check that out. We are BIG fans of anything with animals! Thanks for the reco!

  2. Thank you for your lovely blog – found it while I was looking for more Christmas books – I’m a grandmother and the librarian at the local Catholic junior school. Here in South Africa Christmas comes in the middle of summer, and also in our long summer holiday, with the new year and new classes beginning in January. So we close early in December, and I always try hard to make sure lots of Christmas books are in the classrooms during the last weeks of term. I have a great collection, and am always on the lookout for more! I’ll share some of my favourites – Joyce Dunbar’s “This is the Star” has gorgeous pictures and a rhythmic, poetic story; Brian Wildsmith has two books that weave a child’s story into the Biblical one – ” A Christmas Story” and “A Christmas Journey”, his illustrations are lovely and individual and he always uses gold paint!! Susan Hill wrote the loveliest story called “King of Kings” about an old man who finds a baby on Christmas Eve, very moving… there really are lots of good ones. Blessings on you and your lovely life and work and your family – go well – as we say in Zulu ~”Hamba Kahle”. Julia Heaney, Johannesburg.

    1. Julia, thank you for all these amazing recommendations! I look forward to putting some of these on our list for next year- it sounds like you have a true treasure trove! Your students (and grandkids!) are so lucky! Blessings to you and yours!

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