The holidays are almost here, Savvy Readers, and we could NOT be more excited. To help you get prepared to fully enjoy Christmas this year, we’ve put together an infallible list of books that put us in the Christmas spirit! From ghost stories to adorable picture books to whimsical contemporaries, this list has got something for everyone, so read on, and be merry!
We Met in December by Rose Curtis
Twenty-nine-year-old Jess is following her dream and moving to London. It’s December, and she’s taking a room in a crumbling, but grand, Notting Hill house-share with four virtual strangers. On her first night, Jess meets Alex, the guy sharing her floor, at a Christmas dinner hosted by her landlord. They don’t kiss, but as far as Jess is concerned the connection is clear. She starts planning how they will knock down the wall between them to spend more time together.
But when Jess returns from a two-week Christmas holiday, she finds Alex has started dating someone else—beautiful Emma, who lives on the floor above them. Now Jess faces a year of bumping into (hell, sharing a bathroom with) the man of her dreams…and the woman of his.
Finding Christmas by Karen Schaler
Christmas is Emmie’s first love. This year, she can’t wait to share her favorite Christmas traditions with her boyfriend, Grant. She thinks he’s “the one.” So when Grant’s hectic work schedule has him more “Bah Humbug” than “Ho, Ho, Ho,” Emmie creates a holiday-themed scavenger hunt to help him find his Christmas spirit. At the end of the journey, Grant will arrive at the charming town of Christmas Point where she’s planned a romantic weekend filled with holiday activities.
But Emmie’s plan backfires when a mix-up has the wrong guy following her clues! Sam, a best-selling mystery writer, thinks Emmie’s clever Christmas riddles are from his agent, who is trying to help him get over his epic writer’s block. When Grant finally shows up, Emmie is disappointed to discover he’s not enjoying the activities she planned and can’t help wonder if he’s really the one for her. She also can’t get Sam out of her mind and all the great times they had together. Emmie will need the magic of the season to help steer her in the direction of true love…
The Mistletoe Matchmaker by Felicity Hayes-McCoy
It’s Christmas in Ireland, and when Cassie Fitzgerald arrives from Toronto to visit her grandparents, she learns that it’s never too late to come home.
Why does her sweet-tempered grandmother Pat find it so hard to express her feelings? What’s going on between Pat and her miserly husband Ger? What happened in the past between the Fitzgeralds and Hanna’s redoubtable mother, Mary Casey? And what about Shay: handsome, funny, smart, and intent on making Cassie’s stay as exciting as he can. Could he be the one for her? As Christmas Eve approaches, it’s Cassie, the outsider, who reminds Lissbeg’s locals that love, family, and friendship bring true magic to the season. But will her own, fractured family rediscover the joys of coming home?
Miss Marley: A Christmas Ghost Story by Vanessa Lafaye
Orphans Clara and Jacob Marley live by their wits, scavenging for scraps in the poorest alleyways of London, in the shadow of the workhouse. Every night, Jake promises his little sister ‘tomorrow will be better’ and when the chance to escape poverty comes their way, he seizes it despite the terrible price.
And so Jacob Marley is set on a path that leads to his infamous partnership with Ebenezer Scrooge. As Jacob builds a fortress of wealth to keep the world out, only Clara can warn him of the hideous fate that awaits him if he refuses to let love and kindness into his heart…
Hiddensee by Gregory Maguire
Hiddensee imagines the backstory of the Nutcracker, revealing how this entrancing creature came to be carved and how he guided an ailing girl named Klara through a dreamy paradise on a Christmas Eve. At the heart of E.T.A. Hoffmann’s mysterious tale hovers Godfather Drosselmeier – the ominous, canny, one-eyed toy maker made immortal by Petipa and Tchaikovsky’s fairy tale ballet – who presents the once and future Nutcracker to Klara, his goddaughter.
The Quality Street Girls by Penny Thorpe
At sixteen years old, Irene ‘Reenie’ Calder is leaving school with little in the way of qualifications. She is delighted to land a seasonal job at Mackintosh’s Quality Street factory. Reenie feels like a kid let loose in a sweet shop, but trouble seems to follow her around and it isn’t long before she falls foul of the strict rules. Diana Moore runs the Toffee Penny line and has worked hard to secure her position. Beautiful and smart, the other girls in the factory are in awe of her, but Diana has a dark secret which if exposed, could cost her not only her job at the factory but her reputation as well. When a terrible accident puts supply of Quality Street at risk, Reenie has a chance to prove herself. The shops are full of Quality Street lovers who have saved up all year for their must-have Christmas treat. Reenie and Diana know that everything rests on them, if they are to give everyone a Christmas to remember…
A Wedding in December by Sarah Morgan
In snowy Aspen, the White family gathers for youngest daughter Rosie’s whirlwind Christmas wedding. First to arrive are the bride’s parents, Maggie and Nick. Their daughter’s marriage is a milestone they are determined to celebrate wholeheartedly, but they are hiding a huge secret about their own: they are on the brink of divorce.
Rosie’s older sister, Katie, is also dreading the wedding. Worried that impulsive, sweet-hearted Rosie is making a mistake, Katie is determined to save her sister from herself! If only the irritatingly good-looking best man, Jordan, would stop interfering with her plans. Bride-to-be Rosie loves her fiancé but is having serious second thoughts. Except everyone has arrived—how can she tell them she’s not sure?
A Boy Called Christmas by Matt Haig
Eleven-year-old Nikolas—nicknamed “Christmas”—has received only one toy in his life: a doll carved out of a turnip. Still, he tries hard to believe in happiness, living with his father in the second smallest cottage in all of Finland. Then one day his father goes missing, and Nikolas must travel to the North Pole to save him. Along the way, Nikolas befriends a surly reindeer, bests a troublesome troll, and discovers a hidden world of enchantment in the frozen village of Elfhelm. But the elves of Elfhelm have troubles of their own: Christmas spirit and goodwill are at an all-time low, and Nikolas may be the only person who can fix things—if only he can reach his father before it’s too late. . . .
Christmas on Coronation St. by Maggie Sullivan
Elsie Grimshaw lives in one of the worst streets in Weatherfield and is desperate to escape from life at home with a brutal father and the drudgery of working at the local mill. Elsie emerges from the heartbreak of first love and her marriage to bad boy, Arnold Tanner at only sixteen years old, if not much older, then certainly wiser. Going under her married name of Elsie Tanner, she and Arnold move in to No.11 Coronation Street in 1939 as war breaks out. Her cheeky self-confidence immediately puts her at loggerheads with local busy-body Ena Sharples and Annie Walker, landlady of the Rovers Return. As Christmas approaches, the residents of Coronation Street must put their petty squabbles aside if they are to survive the worst that Hitler’s Luftwaffe can throw at them. And as the Manchester Blitz grips their home town of Weatherfield, the residents must pull together to make this a Christmas to remember – for all of the right reasons…
The Christmas Promise by Sue Moorcroft
On a snowy December evening, Sam Jermyn steps into the life of bespoke hat maker Ava. Sparks fly, and not necessarily the good ones. Times are tough for Ava – she’s struggling to make ends meet, her ex-boyfriend is a bully, and worst of all, it’s nearly Christmas. So when Sam commissions Ava to make a hat for someone special, she makes a promise that will change her life. She just doesn’t know it yet…
25 Days ‘Til Christmas by Poppy Alexander
Kate Potter used to love Christmas. A few years ago, she would have been wrapping her presents in September and baking mince pies on Halloween, counting down the days and hours to Christmas. But that was before Kate’s husband left for the army and never came home. Now she can hardly stand December at all. Kate can’t deny she’s lonely, yet she doesn’t think she’s ready for romance. She knows that her son, Jack, needs a Christmas to remember—just like Kate needs a miracle to help her finally move forward with her life. So she’s decided if there isn’t a miracle on its way, she’ll just have to make her own.
Snow Much Fun! by Nancy Siscoe
A charming picture book about the joys of a snowy day, featuring handmade felt characters—just perfect for reading by the fire.
The first snowflakes are finally falling—and Berry and Ginger are SNOW ready! They can’t wait to be sledding, ice-skating, and snowman-building. But Willow is not so sure…
Sammy Claws: The Christmas Cat by Lucy Rowland
Santa’s cuddly pet cat, Sammy Claws, will sleep anywhere! Snoozing in a box on Christmas Eve, Sammy finds himself wrapped up as a Christmas gift and bundled onto the sleigh with the other presents. How will Sammy escape? And can he save the presents from two robbers with plans to steal them all away?
That’s all we have for you today, Savvy Readers, so go forth and fill your stockings with these Christmassy recommendations!
Happy reading, and happy-almost-holidays!
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