Christmas is upon us, and it’s time for some holiday and winter-themed reads! Many heartwarming and festive stories are out there, so we’ve rounded up the best Christmas books to read with your kids. Since this is the season of giving, many of these children’s books have lessons about giving from the heart, while other stories explore fun activities for kids to do during Christmas. Some books explain the origin story of Christmas, and several share cultural stories focused on the holidays. But each is unique and special, so keep reading to discover which stories are perfect for your family!
101 Great Christmas Books for Kids
Whether you want to read a classic Christmas tale or find a newer story about the holidays, here are 101 of the best Christmas books for kids. We’ve read through each one and shared descriptions below to help you better determine which ones are a good fit!
1. “5 More Sleeps ‘Til Christmas” by Jimmy Fallon
This is a fun countdown book for Christmas with some humor sprinkled in. A little boy anxiously awaits Christmas Day, counting down five nights of sleep (or “five more sleeps”) until the holiday arrives. In the meantime, he and his sister do activities like decorating the Christmas tree, watching snowflakes fall, and putting out milk and cookies for Santa and his reindeer. Will Christmas morning ever come?!
2. “All the Colors of Christmas” by Matthew Paul Turner
Beautifully written with charming rhymes and vivid pictures, this book describes all the colors of Christmas and can help kids recognize and name their colors. Besides the traditional red and green items, as one would expect, the book highlights everything that’s gold, blue, white, and brown during the holidays. It describes many colorful Christmas items, from gold stars and blue wreaths to white snowstorms and brown pine cones.
3. “The Animals’ Santa” by Jan Brett
It’s not just humans who receive visits from Santa Claus; animals also have their own Santa! Little Snow (a young rabbit) is celebrating his first Christmas Eve, during which his older brother, Big Snowshoe, and the other forest animals discuss the gifts they’ve received from Santa in years past. Although the other animals believe in Santa, Little Snow is skeptical, but maybe this will be the year they all meet the elusive gift-giver.
4. “As Cool as It Gets” by Jory John
This Christmas book comes with over 150 stickers for kids! In “As Cool as It Gets,” the Cool Bean is worried about his town’s annual holiday gift exchange. This year, he must find a gift for Beanadette J., one of the coolest beans in town, who’s likely expecting an expensive gift! The Cool Bean doesn’t have the means to buy Beanadette something fancy, so he decides to make her an awesome picture instead. When he arrives at the party, the Cool Bean sees all the other lavish presents and worries his handmade gift isn’t enough. But what does Beanadette think?
5. “Bear Stays Up for Christmas” by Karma Wilson
In this story, a group of forest animals are determined to help their friend, Bear, stay up for Christmas. Bear is very sleepy, so his friends (Mouse, Hare, Gopher, Badger, Mole, Raven, and Wren) must find ways to keep him awake! They take Bear to Pine Grove Glen to cut down a Christmas tree, prepare delicious food and drinks, decorate Bear’s cave, and sing holiday tunes together. By the end of the night, Bear is the one who’s awake, and his friends are sleeping! While his companions slumber, Bear prepares a Christmas surprise for them.
6. “The Berenstain Bears and the Joy of Giving” by Jan and Mike Berenstain
Sister and Brother Bear learn the true meaning of Christmas in “The Berenstain Bears and the Joy of Giving.” With Christmas around the corner, everyone in Bear Country is getting ready for the festivities, including Sister and Brother, who are participating in the Christmas Eve play. When the Bear family goes Christmas shopping, Sister and Brother spend little money on others and seem to care more about gifts for themselves. During the play, however, the siblings are touched by the story of the first-ever Christmas and learn that it’s far better to give than receive.
7. “The Berenstain Bears’ Merry Christmas” by Stan and Jan Berenstain
Here’s another Christmas book from the Berenstain Bears series that features two stories, “The Mad, Mad, Mad Toy Craze” and “Meet Santa Bear.” In the first story, Sister and Brother Bear (and later Papa Bear) get caught up in the craze of buying more and more Beary Bubbies, a line of unique plushies, but the family eventually learns that fads always fade. In the second story, Sister learns about Santa and discovers an important lesson about gift-giving and greediness. The Santa Bear one is perfect for families with little kids with questions about Santa Claus!
8. “The Biggest Little Boy: A Christmas Story” by Poppy Harlow
This picture book is about a little boy named Luca who LOVES big things — big trucks, big toys, big dogs, you name it! He especially loves big trees and wants his parents to get the biggest Christmas tree possible to decorate for their home. But while visiting the Christmas tree market with his mom, Luca finds a tiny, crooked, almost barren tree amidst all the tall ones. Realizing it’s the right tree for him, Luca discovers that extraordinary things can come in small sizes, too.
9. “The Biggest Snowman Ever” by Steven Kroll
In “The Biggest Snowman Ever,” a pair of country mice learn a lesson about working together. The town of Mouseville is holding a snowman contest, and Clayton and Desmond argue over who can make the biggest snowman. The two mice each create one, unknowingly using the same techniques and receiving the same building advice as each other. After completing their masterpieces, they realize everyone’s snowpeople are the same size! Clayton and Desmond have an idea: they can combine their snowmen to make the biggest one ever!
10. “Biscuit’s Christmas Eve” by Alyssa Satin Capucilli
Biscuit, the puppy from the popular children’s book series, is getting ready for Christmas Eve with his owner, a little girl. They have many fun activities to do before the night ends, such as decorating the tree, hanging stockings over the fireplace, and making Christmas gifts for their friends and family members. Biscuit and the little girl also sing with Christmas carolers at their door and put out cookies and milk for Santa — and Biscuit gets a treat, too!
11. “Charlie and the Christmas Kitty” by Ree Drummond
Charlie, a ranch dog, is the proud “King of the Ranch” who enjoys his life of cattle wrangling, critter chasing, fish catching, etc. But he’s in for a shock this Christmas when his family adopts a new kitty! Charlie can’t believe his eyes and isn’t happy with another set of paws on his ranch. He tries minding his business in hopes that the problem will disappear, but the sweet kitty ignores Charlie’s rebuffs, and the ranch dog learns to accept his new feline friend. This book also comes with a yummy recipe for Christmas cookies from Food Network star Ree Drummond.
12. “A Charlie Brown Christmas” by Charles M. Schulz (Adapted by Maggie Testa)
This book is an adaption of the beloved television special, “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” Charlie Brown is feeling depressed about Christmas — he just doesn’t understand the holiday and struggles with the “commercial” aspects of it. Lucy invites Charlie Brown to direct the Christmas play to lift his spirits, but he’s not too effective in this role. Charlie Brown decides they need a Christmas tree and chooses a sparse, itty bitty tree. The others aren’t happy about this, but Linus steps in and reminds everyone what Christmas is all about.
13. “The Christmas Blessing” by Erin Guendelsberger
This rhyming nativity book imagines the preparations for Mary and Joseph made by the animals in the stable. In “The Christmas Blessing,” Mama Star tells the barn animals to clean the stable for visitors coming that night. The animals aren’t thrilled about this task and claim they’re too different to work together, and they quickly begin bickering. Mama Star reminds them they’re not so different because they all have love for their children, families, and friends. The animals embrace one another and work harmoniously to clean up and create a manger for the baby.
14. “Christmas in the Manger” by Nola Buck
“Christmas in the Manger” is another nativity story with simpler text, making this book an excellent option for families with smaller kids. This short board book introduces the characters in the Christmas story: the star, the stable animals, the shepherds, the wise men, Mary, and the baby Jesus. It briefly describes their roles in the story and features cute illustrations.
15. “The Christmas Owl” by Gideon Sterer and Ellen Kalish
This kids’ book is based on the actual story of an owl rescued from the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree. In winter, a little owl from a small town is intrigued by the mysterious Christmas festivities around her. One day, when flying home, the owl sees workers taking down her home tree for Christmas! Accidentally stuck in the tree, the owl is transported to New York City, a place with unfamiliar sights and sounds. When the owl is finally discovered, she’s taken to a wildlife center, is nursed back to health, and learns what Christmas means.
16. “Christmas Parade” by Sandra Boynton
Little Pookie is delighted to hear the sounds of a loud Christmas parade passing by. The piggy excitedly watches from the window and sees various animals making music, such as chickens with bassoons, many drumming hippos, cows playing saxophones, and a tiny bird with a loud tuba. As the parade ends, it begins to snow, and Pookie hears a knock on the door. Standing outside are all the animals from the parade with a musical message for Pookie!
17. “The Christmas Pine” by Julia Donaldson
Here’s a sweet Christmas book about growth and the passage of time. It follows the life of a small pine tree growing in the woods. Eventually, the tree grows tall and high and is cut down and brought to a city to be a beautiful Christmas tree. The tree loves its life in the city square, watching the people pass by, but it especially loves when all the children come together and sing Christmas carols near it. The tree knows another will take its spot next year, but it hopes it will be remembered and wishes for the children to grow and shine as it did.
18. “Christmas Songs” by Holly Berry-Byrd
This interactive sound book is a great option for toddlers, as it features 10 sing-along Christmas carols for them to learn, including “Jingle Bells,” “Deck the Halls,” and “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.” Kids can read the lyrics and push the buttons to hear the songs; plus, a bonus Santa button says, “Ho, ho ho!” The book also has adorable pictures that help bring these songs to life.
19. “The Christmas Story” by Jane Werner Watson
This Little Golden Book shares a detailed retelling of the Christmas story. Mary, a girl from Galilee, is visited by an angel, who tells her she will have a son named Jesus. Mary and her husband, Joseph, travel to Bethlehem looking for a place to rest, but the town is crowded, so every inn turns the couple away. Finally, one innkeeper lets the couple stay in a stable, where Mary gives birth to her son and lays him in a manger.
20. “Clifford’s Christmas” by Norman Bridwell
Emily Elizabeth and her dog, Clifford, celebrate Christmas together in this delightful storybook. During the holiday season, they build snowmen with friends, play ice hockey, and buy a giant Christmas tree, which is the perfect size for Clifford’s big doghouse. Emily Elizabeth also sews a giant stocking for her dog, and Clifford even gets a visit from Santa Claus and his reindeer!
21. “Clifford’s First Christmas” by Norman Bridwell
In this book, Emily Elizabeth tells the story of Clifford’s first Christmas with her family. A puppy at the time, Clifford had helped decorate the tree, played with colorful ornaments, and assisted with gift wrapping on Christmas Eve. That night, Clifford hadn’t been able to sleep, and as he was exploring, he accidentally fell into a stocking! Luckily, Santa dropped by and found the puppy, returning him to Emily Elizabeth. In the morning, they awoke to many gifts and enjoyed playing with all their new toys.
22. “Construction Site on Christmas Night” by Sherri Duskey Rinker
This is a cute Christmas book for kids interested in construction equipment, like bulldozers and dump trucks. It’s about a team of machines and vehicles with a building project to finish on Christmas night. Each has a unique purpose for the project; for instance, Excavator digs up the foundation, while Cement Mixer pours concrete and makes a road. Each team member also receives a thoughtful Christmas gift for their hard work!
23. “Construction Site: Merry and Bright” by Sherri Duskey Rinker
Here’s another Christmas book for kids from the Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site series. This is a lift-the-flap book about the construction crew’s Christmas Eve celebration. Kids can open the flaps to reveal a holiday surprise from each crew member, including Crane Truck, Bulldozer, and Dump Truck, as they decorate the construction site with lights, stockings, and more!
24. “Corduroy’s Christmas Surprise” by Don Freeman
The adorable teddy bear Corduroy celebrates Christmas with his friends in this heartwarming book. Corduroy writes a letter to Santa listing all the presents he wants: ice skates, a warm sweater, a train set, and a new ball. Later, Corduroy discovers that his friends asked Santa for the same things! Corduroy worries there won’t be enough gifts for everyone, so he rewrites his letter and selflessly asks Santa only to bring presents for his friends. However, there’s still a surprise in store for Corduroy on Christmas morning!
25. “The Crayons’ Christmas” by Drew Daywalt
“The Crayons’ Christmas” follows a group of crayons as they celebrate Christmas by decorating the tree, putting on a play, going caroling, and doing other festive activities. The crayons are also excited to receive so many letters in the mail, but Duncan, the little boy who owns the crayons, is sad that no one seems to have remembered him. But the crayons show Duncan they are grateful for him (with a pop-up Christmas tree!). Bonus: The book includes punch-out ornaments, cards, activities, and other fun items.
26. “Dasher: How a Brave Little Doe Changed Christmas Forever” by Matt Tavares
This book shares the touching tale of how Santa began using reindeer to guide his sleigh. It starts rather sad as we read about reindeer in a traveling circus living in captivity. But Dasher, a young doe, lives with her family here, and her mother recalls fond memories of roaming free in the snow under the North Star. One day, when the opportunity arises, Dasher escapes her pen and runs away! While traveling through the woods, she meets Santa, struggling to get his sleigh off the ground with only a horse to pull it. Dasher bravely steps in to save the day — and her family!
27. “Dear Santa” by Rod Campbell
“Dear Santa” is a lift-the-flap Christmas book for young kids. Santa Claus is debating what gift to give the narrator, who writes him a letter asking for something “special.” Santa wraps all kinds of gifts, but they’re either too big, too small, too scary, and so on. Your little reader can guess what’s inside each box and open the flaps to see the gifts Santa is wrapping! Finally, Santa finds the perfect gift (hint: it’s fluffy), which kids can touch and feel at the end.
28. “The Deep and Snowy Wood” by Elwyn Tate
In “The Deep and Snowy Wood,” one deer races through the snow, one squirrel quickly hops across tree branches, and one mole hurriedly digs an underground hole, all headed in the same direction. But where could they be going? And what are they looking for? None of the other woodland animals know, so they follow the deer, squirrel, and mole to the edge of the woods. There, they all catch a glimpse of a legendary Christmas figure!
29. “Disney Baby: My First Christmas” by Disney Books
This touch-and-feel board book features Disney characters celebrating Christmas, including Mickey Mouse and his dog Pluto, Olaf from “Frozen,” and Snow White and the seven dwarfs. This is an excellent book for your baby’s first Christmas, as it features simple language, cute pictures, and fun textures for them to touch. Follow along as the characters sing Christmas carols, share kisses under the mistletoe, exchange gifts, and more.
30. “Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Sleigh!” by Mo Willems
If your kids like “Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!” they’ll love the Christmas version of the book. In this story, the pigeon spies Santa’s sleigh and REALLY wants to drive it. He has many reasons you should let him do it; for instance, it would be a Christmas miracle, and he hasn’t been too naughty this year! Plus, he believes he could easily do Santa’s job — eating cookies, wrapping presents, etc. But don’t be fooled, and don’t let him drive the sleigh!
31. “Dr. Seuss’s Winter Things” by Dr. Seuss
This Dr. Seuss book features Thing One and Thing Two from “The Cat in the Hat” as they enjoy the winter season. Read along as the pair make snow angels, go ice skating, ride on a sled, and later enjoy the warm indoors. With easy-to-read rhyming text, “Winter Things” would make a great Christmas gift for babies or toddlers.
32. “Elmo’s Countdown to Christmas” by Naomi Kleinberg
Elmo and his friends are getting ready for Christmas in this Sesame Street board book, which has over 30 flaps for kids to lift! From playing in the snow to helping Oscar the Grouch decorate and get into the holiday spirit, Elmo and his pals have many fun things to do. And they all sing Christmas carols on Christmas Eve, which is Elmo’s favorite activity!
33. “Fancy Nancy: Splendiferous Christmas” by Jane O’Connor
This fabulous entry in the Fancy Nancy series is a great Christmas book for kids. We love that it explains big words to young readers — words like “aroma,” “heirloom,” and “delectable.” It follows Nancy as she and her family prepare for Christmas; Nancy even reveals a beautiful tree topper she bought months in advance! But when an accident happens, Nancy’s grandpa teaches her how to go with the flow.
34. “Frosty the Snowman” by Diane Muldrow
“Frosty the Snowman” is a timeless Christmas tale your children will love. This version is based on the classic animated TV special and has illustrations to match. In this story, a group of kids build a snowman named Frosty, who comes to life with a magical hat. Knowing that the friendly snowman has to live somewhere cold, one of the children, Karen, and a rabbit named Hocus Pocus journey with Frosty to the North Pole. But a greedy magician is following their every move, seeking Frosty’s magical hat!
35. “The Gingerbread Man” by Gail Yerrill
This classic story is perfect for Christmastime and features a silly refrain that kids will have fun reading aloud. In this fairytale, a gingerbread man evades being eaten by the little old woman who bakes him, a pig, a cow, and more — until he encounters a clever fox. This story has multiple retellings, but this padded version with large text is a great option.
36. “Gingerbread Mouse” by Katy Bratun
Mouse is enjoying a cozy night in her little house when, suddenly, a branch crashes down and ruins her home. With no place to stay, Mouse travels through the harsh weather conditions and eventually stumbles upon a new place to live: a gingerbread house! It sits within a family’s home, and Mouse quickly settles in and enjoys her new abode. On Christmas Eve, Santa visits the family’s house and greets Mouse, then offers her an even lovelier (and more permanent) place to live.
37. “The Giving Snowman” by Julia Zheng
This book is similar to “The Giving Tree” by Shel Silverstein but is more cheerful, making it a great children’s read for the holidays. In “The Giving Snowman,” several characters (Bird, Rabbit, Farmer, and Traveler) come across a kind snowman one night. Each needs something that the snowman happily provides. For instance, Rabbit seeks food for her family, and the snowman offers his carrot nose to feed her little ones. The next day, the snowman is almost melted! Bird, Rabbit, Farmer, and Traveler work together to rebuild their new friend.
38. “Goodnight Santa” by Michelle Robinson
If you’re looking for a Christmas-themed bedtime story, this book is an excellent choice for kids. In this story, a sister and brother are heading to bed on Christmas Eve. But first, they say goodnight to everyone — the snowman, the carolers, the Christmas tree, their stockings, etc. The siblings even see Santa Claus! They follow him to his workshop and hitch a ride in the sleigh as Santa delivers gifts. Finally, the children head off to bed for a peaceful night of sleep.
39. “Grandma’s Christmas Wishes” by Holly Berry-Byrd
Here’s a Christmas book that grandmas can give their grandchildren for the holidays. In “Grandma’s Christmas Wishes,” a grandmother owl shares her hopes and dreams for her little owl grandchild. This magical, rhyming board book expresses how much grandmas love and care for their grandchildren and would make an excellent grandparent gift (plus, it’s padded for easier grip!).
40. “The Gruffalo’s Child” by Julia Donaldson
The sequel to “The Gruffalo” is a terrific book for wintertime, and it can make a great Christmas gift that kids will enjoy! In this story, the Gruffalo tells his daughter about the Big Bad Mouse he once encountered, warning her not to enter the scary woods. But one night, while her father sleeps, the Gruffalo’s child visits the snowy woods searching for the mouse. She meets several not-so-scary animals and eventually finds a tiny mouse with a big trick up his sleeve!
41. “Ho Ho Ho! (Peek-a-Flap)” by Holly Berry-Byrd
This lift-the-flap board book illustrates various Christmas activities, such as decorating the tree, wrapping gifts, baking cookies, and meeting Santa. It features bright illustrations and 12 flaps with holiday surprises for children to discover. We also like that this book displays the names of several objects on each page, so kids can practice identifying everyday and Christmas items.
42. “How Do Dinosaurs Say Merry Christmas?” by Jane Yolen
Dino lovers will eat this book up! As part of the “How Do Dinosaurs?” series, this hilarious book is about dinosaurs celebrating Christmas in a modern setting (and with human families). It shows the destructive behaviors little dinos shouldn’t do on Christmas Eve (sneaking out of bed, licking all the candy canes, opening presents early, etc.) and what well-behaved dinos should do on Christmas (carefully trim the tree, clean the dishes, and stay tucked in bed!).
43. “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” by Dr. Seuss
Dr. Seuss’s “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” is a holiday must-read for children. This book is about the Grinch, who despises everything about Christmas. He lives near Whoville, where the Whos are preparing for the holiday. The Grinch suddenly gets a sinister idea: he will steal Christmas! On the night of Christmas Eve, he rides into town with his dog, Max, and takes all the decorations and presents from the homes in Whoville. But the Grinch learns that he can’t truly stop Christmas from coming.
44. “How Santa Got His Job” by Stephen Krensky
Here’s a funny book that explains how Santa found the right job for him! Years before taking that gig at the North Pole, Santa worked as a mail delivery person, but since he only delivered packages at night, the post office received complaints about him. Santa also worked a night job at a diner, but he tasted too much of the food and gained a lot of weight. Santa’s other past occupations included a chimney cleaning job, a zoo job, and a circus job. Finally, Santa found the perfect position that would fit his lifestyle and allow him to use all his skills.
45. “How to Catch an Elf” by Adam Wallace
We also had to include some holiday books from the entertaining “How to Catch” series. This one is narrated by a tiny elf trying to help Santa Claus deliver gifts without being caught by any children. The elf tries to dodge all the clever traps that have been set, including a tinsel net and a bonbon bomb! But the traps get even trickier and more complicated as the book continues! Will anyone catch the elf and Santa, or will they complete their Christmas duties?
46. “How to Catch a Gingerbread Man” by Adam Wallace
This is a fun Christmas book that older kids will enjoy. During storytime at a bookstore, the Gingerbread Man escapes from his story! The children try to catch him to put him back, but the Gingerbread Man and his other fairytale friends (including Peter Pan, Sherlock Holmes, Robin Hood, and Alice in Wonderland) are too smart to fall for the kids’ tricks. They wreak havoc all over the bookstore until, finally, the Gingerbread Man returns to his book to make the kids happy again.
47. “How to Catch a Snowman” by Adam Wallace
This story puts a twist on “Frosty the Snowman” with a snowman who comes alive — but isn’t so warm and friendly! In “How to Catch a Snowman,” a group of kids enter a snowman competition, and one of their creations magically comes to life and runs away. In a frenzy of snow and chaos, the freed snowman escapes all the children’s traps, including a net of scarves, a snow globe container, and an igloo. Read it to find out who wins before sundown!
48. “I Am Max” by Astrid Holm
This book is a fun continuation of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” for younger children. It’s told from the point of view of Max, the Grinch’s dog. Max recounts how the Grinch hated the Christmas season and once tried to steal it — unsuccessfully. The Grinch’s heart has since grown “three sizes,” and the pair enjoy their life on Mt. Crumpit. They walk in the snow, eat breakfast together, and even celebrate Christmas!
49. “I Got the Christmas Spirit” by Connie Schofield-Morrison
This is a great book to read to get your kids in the Christmas spirit! In this story, a little girl wakes up with “the spirit of the season” and finds it everywhere. She sings with it in her heart, tastes it in some yummy chestnuts, feels it in the cold winter air, and spreads it around the city with love. This book has beautiful illustrations and fun sounds to read aloud with your children, like “jingle jingle” for the bells ringing and “swish swish” for the sound of ice skates.
50. “I Love You Through and Through at Christmas, Too!” by Bernadette Rossetti-Shustak
You can use this book to remind your baby or toddler that you love them all year, including Christmastime. It shows all the fun things parents love to do with their children during the holiday season, such as shopping, baking, eating, and cuddling. There’s also an adorable teddy bear friend on every page who joins the festivities!
51. “If You Take a Mouse to the Movies” by Laura Numeroff
The “If You Give” series written by Laura Numeroff has a great set of books for kids, including this Christmas-themed story. The lovable, spontaneous, and dynamic mouse from “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” returns for holiday fun in this book. While going to the movies, the mouse decides he wants some popcorn, then wants to string it together for his Christmas tree, and the series of holiday activities keeps growing!
52. “It’s Christmas, David!” by David Shannon
“It’s Christmas, David!” will have little ones giggling at all of David’s usual antics. This funny book is about the mischievous David who’s disciplined for doing many naughty things at Christmas time, such as peeking at his presents, asking Santa for too many gifts, and running around without clothes! David even makes it on Santa’s naughty list! Well, not really. Turns out all that scolding, troublemaking, and mayhem was just a bad dream, and David gets to enjoy a merry Christmas.
53. “The Jolly Christmas Postman” by Allan Ahlberg
This rhyming, interactive book follows the Jolly Postman as he delivers mail on Christmas Eve. Along the way, he encounters many fairytale and nursery rhyme characters, such as Red Riding Hood (who gets a letter from Mr. Wolf) and Humpty Dumpty (who receives a jigsaw puzzle from all the king’s horses and all the king’s men). The Jolly Postman also delivers a book to the Gingerbread Boy and children’s letters to Santa Claus. What we love about this Christmas book is that with each mail stop, there’s a letter or activity that kids can open up and explore!
54. “Little Blue Truck’s Christmas” by Alice Schertle
Here’s a Christmas book from the “Little Blue Truck” series that many kids adore. In this story, Little Blue Truck is excited about his delivery job every Christmas — giving out Christmas trees! His friend Toad puts five trees in Little Blue and comes along for the ride as they bring the trees to their animal friends (and save one for Little Blue!). This book can help kids practice counting and adding/subtracting as the trees are picked up and given out.
55. “Little Red” by Will Hillenbrand
If you’re looking for a brand-new Christmas story, “Little Red” is a heartwarming picture book that came out in 2023. It’s about a pickup truck named Little Red that must save several people and vehicles stuck in a snowstorm, threatening to ruin the town’s annual Christmas tree lighting. Our Editor-in-Chief read this Christmas story with her kids and said it’s a sweet book!
56. “Little Red Sleigh” by Erin Guendelsberger
A little red sleigh dreams of becoming Santa’s sleigh one day. The problem? Everyone says she’s too small, slow, and young; plus, she can’t fly! Little Red is willing to beat the odds and prove herself, so she decides to go to the North Pole to see Santa. On her journey, she hitches a ride on a train and then a yellow truck, who both remind her that growth takes time. Before the little sleigh can make it to Santa, a young girl finds her in the snow and uses Little Red to ride down the snowy hills, and soon, more kids join in to play. As Little Red reflects on her exciting day with the children, she realizes her true purpose — with some help from Santa Claus.
57. “The Littlest Christmas Tree” by R. A. Herman
“The Littlest Christmas Tree” is about a tiny evergreen tree with a big wish. It dreams of someone taking it home for Christmas, decorating it, and singing its favorite Christmas carol (“O Christmas Tree,” of course!). As Christmas approaches, many animals visit the stand searching for a tree, including a fox family and a pair of twin bunnies. Sadly, everyone overlooks the Littlest Tree, and it begins to worry no one will choose it. But on the night of Christmas Eve, the tree stand owner and his family finally make the Littlest Tree’s wish come true.
58. “The Littlest Elf” by Brandi Dougherty
Oliver is the littlest elf in the North Pole, and it’s time for him to find a job at one of Santa’s workshops. He visits his family members at work to see which place he should choose. At the toy workshop, Oliver tries to make teddy bears but gets lost in the stuffing, and at the bike workshop, Oliver discovers his hands are too small for the tools. Oliver then falls into the mixing bowl at the bakery and spills ink all over the bookmakers’ shop. Feeling discouraged by his size, Oliver wanders around town and finds a stable, where he meets a little reindeer named Dot. Together, the new friends end up finding the perfect job.
59. “The Littlest Reindeer” by Brandi Dougherty
If you liked “The Littlest Elf,” you’ll love this follow-up book about Dot, the littlest reindeer in Santa’s Village. Dot and her elf friend (Oliver, you’ll recall) are Santa’s special helpers. But Dot wants an additional job: to help fly Santa’s sleigh! She decides to get lessons from her family members, who demonstrate how to run, jump, and fly, but Dot is too little for the task. On Christmas Eve, Dot and the rest of the town watch as Santa and his reindeer begin to fly away to deliver presents. When Dot sees a tiny present fall from the sleigh, she must use all her might to fly and return the gift to Santa.
60. “Llama Llama Holiday Drama” by Anna Dewdney
In this book, Llama Llama feels anxious for Christmas to arrive. Even with activities like Christmas shopping, baking cookies for school, and decorating the house in preparation for the big day, the waiting is unbearable! Llama Llama grows increasingly restless and finally snaps from all the waiting. Mama Llama sits him down and shares some words of wisdom, reminding Llama Llama that in the waiting, they have a chance to rest and hold each other close, which is the best gift of all.
61. “Llama Llama Jingle Bells” by Anna Dewdney
Here’s another Llama Llama book with colorful illustrations, short sentences, and less text than the previous one, making it a better choice for younger readers. “Llama Llama Jingle Bells” showcases the magic of Christmastime for little ones. Follow Llama Llama as he looks at Christmas trees, sings songs with friends, decorates cookies with Mama Llama, puts out snacks for Santa, and more.
62. “Merry Christmas Mom and Dad” by Mercer Mayer
In “Merry Christmas Mom and Dad,” Little Critter is eager to make Christmas a great time for his parents. Although he has good intentions, things don’t always work out; for instance, Little Critter wants to help his mother decorate cookies, but he ends up tasting them instead! This book shows how hard it can be for kids to contain their excitement around Christmas, and it’s sure to get some laughs from your little one.
63. “Merry Christmas, Curious George” by H. A. Rey
Curious George fans will love this Christmas book, which comes with stickers! The story follows George and the Man with the Yellow Hat as they visit a tree farm. While there, George climbs on top of the tallest tree in the lot, which is cut down and taken to the children’s hospital — with George still in it! The curious monkey explores the building and decorates the tree with hospital items. Before a nurse can kick George out, the sick children are cheered up by the silly decorations and plead to let their new friend stay for the Christmas festivities.
64. “Merry Christmas, Little Critter!” by Mercer Mayer
This Christmas book is also from the Little Critter series. In this one, Little Critter shares all the fun activities his family does during the holidays. He and his sister write letters to Santa, go sledding at their grandparents’ farm, and help their parents decorate the house for Christmas. Little Critter also spies Santa flying on his sleigh from his bedroom window! Finally, he enjoys opening gifts and eating dinner with his family on Christmas Day.
65. “Merry Christmas, Little Pookie” by Sandra Boynton
If your kids can’t get enough of Pookie, here’s another Christmas book featuring this lovable character. In “Merry Christmas, Little Pookie,” Mom and Pookie watch as the snow falls on Christmas Eve. Pookie puts on a snowsuit, and the pair take a fun (but cold!) walk outside. Next, they decorate their house, bake cookies, and sing songs with family and friends. Finally, Mom and Pookie hang their stockings and head to bed to get some shut-eye before Christmas morning.
66. “Merry Christmas, Mouse!” by Laura Numeroff
This sturdy board book would make a great stocking stuffer for kids this Christmas! “Merry Christmas, Mouse!” is a counting book for toddlers that helps them practice their numbers. While you read it aloud, they can count along as Mouse puts a star on the Christmas tree and adds more and more ornaments to decorate it.
67. “Merry Christmas, Stinky Face” by Lisa McCourt
Stinky Face has lots of questions about Christmas! What if the snow falls so much that it blocks the doorway? What if the wind blows their Christmas tree away? And what if Santa’s toy sack rips?! Luckily, Mama has lots of answers and solutions, and she lovingly addresses each of Stinky Face’s questions. This Christmas book has a great message to reassure little kids that parents care about their concerns and will look out for them.
68. “Merry Christmas, Woody” by Kristen L. Depken
The characters from Pixar’s “Toy Story” are featured in this delightful Christmas book for kids. All the toys excitedly decorate Andy’s room for their Christmas party — except for Woody, who’s stressed out because he can’t decide what presents to get his friends! But with some holiday magic, Buzz Lightyear and the other toys show Woody that Christmas isn’t about gifts.
69. “Moo, Baa, Fa La La La La!” by Sandra Boynton
This board book was written to the tune of the popular Christmas carol, “Deck the Halls,” so you and your kids can sing it aloud together! It’s fitting for the holidays and lets younger children practice their animal sounds, like “quack” for ducks and “bow wow” for dogs. And it features Sandra Boynton’s signature illustration style with a Christmas twist.
70. “Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree” by Robert Barry
This is a sweet book about a giant Christmas tree that, piece by piece, finds its way to many different homes. It all starts with Mr. Willowby, who discovers that his tree is too tall for his ceiling. The butler chops the top off to make it fit, but instead of throwing away the extra piece, he gives it to the maid, Miss Adelaide. She loves her new tree, but it’s too tall for her space, so she snips off the top and throws it away. The pattern continues with more people and animals getting a piece, including a mouse family that uses the last and smallest part to light up their home.
71. “The Night Before Christmas: The Classic Edition” by Clement C. Moore
The holidays wouldn’t be complete without reading “The Night Before Christmas” with your family! This timeless poem will make an excellent bedtime story for Christmas Eve as kids read about how Santa Claus visits homes to deliver toys. This classic edition is hardcover and features beautiful, detailed illustrations that help make the story more engaging. (The Little Golden Book version is also a great option if you want something a little cheaper.)
72. “The Not Very Merry Pout-Pout Fish” by Deborah Diesen
Mr. Fish wants to choose the PERFECT gifts for his friends this Christmas — each must be big and bright, bring delight, have meaning, etc. He visits several stores with fantastic choices, but with all his requirements, he can’t seem to find the right gifts. When all the stores close, Mr. Fish is out of luck because there’s no more time to buy presents! Fortunately, Miss Shimmer helps him and reminds him that the best gifts can’t be purchased.
73. “The Nutcracker” by New York City Ballet
If your little one is into ballet or dance, this will make a great Christmas gift for them! Based on the famous ballet, “The Nutcracker” tells the story of a girl (Marie, rather than Clara in this version) who’s given a beautiful Nutcracker for Christmas, which her jealous brother breaks. That night, Marie’s grandfather repairs the gift, and she magically shrinks to the size of her Nutcracker! Your child will love reading how Marie and the Nutcracker take on the Mouse King and visit the Land of Sweets with the Sugarplum Fairy. We love that this version illustrates the elegant dance movements of the ballet, which makes you feel like you’re watching the actual show!
74. “Olaf’s Night Before Christmas” by Jessica Julius
If you’re a Disney family, you’ll love this version of “The Night Before Christmas” with characters from “Frozen.” It even comes with an audio narration read by Olaf himself! In this story, Olaf is lying in bed on Christmas Eve when he hears a startling sound. He goes to the window and spies Santa Claus and his reindeer flying through the air. When Santa comes down the chimney, Olaf greets him: “My name is Olaf, and I love warm hugs!”
75. “Olive, the Other Reindeer” by J. Otto Seibold and Vivian Walsh
In this book, a little dog named Olive thinks she’s a reindeer! So, naturally, she heads to the North Pole to help Santa Claus deliver gifts. Although he knows Olive is a dog, Santa lets her tag along with the other reindeer. Olive is a valuable helper, fetching flutes that have fallen from the sleigh and chewing their way out of a huge tree. After successfully delivering all the gifts, Santa and his team get caught in a terrible fog, so it’s up to Olive to sniff their way back to the North Pole!
76. “Olivia Helps with Christmas” by Ian Falconer
This funny book follows the amusing little piggy from the Olivia series as she and her family celebrate the holidays. On Christmas Eve, Olivia untangles a string of lights (but gets a little tangled herself), sets the dinner table for Mom, and sings Christmas carols — all while keeping an eye out for Santa with her younger brothers. When Christmas finally arrives, Olivia opens her gifts, plays in the snow, and goes to bed with wonderful Christmas dreams.
77. “Pete the Cat Saves Christmas” by Eric Litwin
In “Pete the Cat Saves Christmas,” Santa has a cold and can’t deliver gifts, so he asks Pete to step in for him so that all the good children can still get their toys. Even though he’s small, Pete readily agrees to help Santa and uses his minibus as a sleigh! This book from the Pete the Cat series features a cute song refrain about “giving your all” that you can sing aloud. And kids will love reading about Pete’s Christmas adventure!
78. “A Peter Rabbit Tale: A Christmas Wish” by Beatrix Potter
This Peter Rabit tale captures the excitement of children waiting for Santa to visit their home. In this board book, Peter and his siblings are eager to receive a gift from Father Christmas, and they each settle into their beds for the night. Mrs. Rabbit says Father Christmas only comes once every bunny is asleep, but Peter is too excited and can’t sleep! Every time he hears a sound, Peter thinks it might be Father Christmas, but he hasn’t come yet. Will Peter fall asleep in time for Father Christmas to arrive?
79. “Pick a Pine Tree” by Patricia Toht
“Pick a Pine Tree” explores the holiday tradition of decorating a Christmas tree. The book illustrates all the necessary steps, from choosing a tree that you’ll bring home to finding the perfect place to display it. You’ll also need to find all your decorations stored away, then add lots of lights and unique ornaments to your tree. Add some tinsel, a tree skirt, presents, and the tree topper — finally, you have a glorious Christmas tree!
80. “Pig the Elf” by Aaron Blabey
Pig the Pug is very naughty in this Christmas story! It’s Christmas Eve, and Pig (in his elf costume) is bouncing off the walls in excitement for all the presents he’ll receive. While his dachshund friend Trevor sleeps peacefully, Pig says, “Sleep is for losers!” and waits all night for Santa. But what happens when Pig doesn’t get all the gifts he wants? Readers will get a kick out of Pig’s antics and learn an important lesson about not being greedy.
81. “Pinkalicious: Merry Pinkmas” by Victoria Kann
In this story, Pinkalicious and her family are preparing for Christmas when she comes up with a fantastic idea: getting a pink Christmas tree! However, everyone else in her family isn’t so sure about this suggestion and would prefer a real pine tree. Pinkalicious has many great reasons to get a pink tree from the store and does her best to convince her family. Will she sway them into having a pinkerrific Christmas?!
82. “A Piñata in a Pine Tree: A Latino Twelve Days of Christmas” by Pat Mora
“A Piñata in a Pine Tree” is a fun twist on the Christmas carol, “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” that’ll be fun for families to read aloud! Each day showcases a different Christmas item written in Spanish and its pronunciation. The book also shows children how to count in Spanish. (There’s a helpful glossary and pronunciation guide in the back as well.) This is an excellent choice for bilingual households with kids learning English and Spanish!
83. “The Polar Express” by Chris Van Allsburg
This beloved children’s book is a Christmas must-read and a relaxing story for bedtime. “The Polar Express” is about a little boy who climbs aboard a magnificent train that takes him and other children to the North Pole. They eat delicious holiday treats and enjoy the sights as they travel to see Santa Claus, who will give one lucky child “the first gift of Christmas.” (There’s also a movie adaptation that you can watch with your kids!)
84. “Red and Lulu” by Matt Tavares
This book is similar to “The Christmas Owl” but focuses on a love story between two birds. Red and Lulu, two happy cardinals, live in a grand evergreen tree and enjoy their beautiful home. One day, Red flies off to get breakfast, but when he returns, he finds that their tree has been cut down with Lulu in it! A truck hauls the tree off, and Red tells Lulu he will find her. Red follows the truck but loses it and finds himself in New York City, where, for days, he searches for Lulu. Will he ever reunite with his love?
85. “Richard Scarry’s Christmas Mice” by Richard Scarry
On early Christmas morning, two little mice awaken before everyone else in the house. They look under the tree and explore all the marvelous gifts that Santa has brought for the family. They find many decorations and presents, such as a picture book, a dollhouse, cookies and gingerbread, and even a new puppy! But did Santa remember to bring something for the little mice?
86. “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” by Rick Bunsen
Based on the holiday special we all know and love, this book tells the story of how Rudolph saves Christmas. In “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” Rudolph struggles to be accepted because of his glowing, red nose. But after meeting other misfits, battling the Abominable Snow Monster, and lighting Santa’s way through a foggy night, Santa and the other Christmastown residents finally realize Rudolph’s value.
87. “Santa’s Workshop” by Holly Berry-Byrd
This lift-the-flap board book gives young readers a special tour of Santa’s workshop! Led by an adorable penguin guide (who’s dressed in a cozy scarf and fluffy earmuffs), readers can peek into Mrs. Claus’ Cookie Kitchen, the elves’ workshop, the reindeer playground, and more. Kids will love lifting the flaps to reveal different characters and surprises throughout this Christmas book.
88. “Santa and the Goodnight Train” by June Sobel
If you’re looking for a Polar Express-type story for younger kids, this book is a great way to go! Snuggle up with your little one and read along as the children and animals ride on the goodnight train to see Santa Claus. The train takes them through a yummy gingerbread town, Gumdrop Crossing, the snowy woods, and more. Your kids will enjoy looking at the bold (and silly!) illustrations that make you feel like you’re really at the North Pole.
89. “Sneezy the Snowman” by Maureen Wright
Who knew snowmen could get colds?! “Sneezy the Snowman” is a funny book about a sick snowman who can’t seem to warm up right. Sneezy tries several ways to get warm (drinking cocoa, making a fire, etc.) but melts each time! Throughout the story, a group of children take care of Sneezy, offering him their warm clothes and rebuilding him every time he melts. Ultimately, Sneezy finds that eating ice cream and bundling up can help him feel “just right.”
90. “The Snowman’s Song: A Christmas Story” by Marilee Joy Mayfield
In this book, a little snowman with a song in his heart dreams of having a voice. Sadly, snow people don’t have voices and can only send thoughts with their minds. However, a red cardinal encourages the little snowman and says that he must believe in himself to be able to sing. Despite his doubts, the snowman wishes and prays for a voice, but with no results. All that changes when he meets a thoughtful young girl who believes in him and decides to help.
91. “Snowmen at Christmas” by Caralyn Buehner
This creative book explores what one little boy thinks snowmen do to celebrate Christmas. The boy imagines that, when he’s sleeping, all the snowmen sneak off and gather at the town square to throw a big Christmas party! They greet all their friends and family, put up twinkling decorations, and make delicious cold treats. There’s singing, dancing, and playing, and snowman Kris Kringle even gives out presents made of snow!
92. “Stick Man” by Julia Donaldson
Stick Man lives in the family tree with his Stick Lady Love and three kids. One day, while he’s outside jogging, a dog picks him up, beginning a chain of events that takes Stick Man further and further away from his family! Stick Man is taken by a child, a swan, and others before ending up in a precarious situation in a fireplace. Luckily, Santa comes down the chimney and brings Stick Man along to deliver gifts, then safely returns him to his family tree.
93. “The Sweet Smell of Christmas” by Patricia M. Scarry
In this scratch-and-sniff book, kids can actually “smell” Christmas! The story follows Little Bear as he and his family celebrate Christmas with activities like baking, decorating a tree, and opening gifts. Kids can smell six wonderful scents: a baked apple pie, a pine tree, a candy cane, a gingerbread boy, hot chocolate, and an orange!
94. “There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bell!” by Lucille Colandro
This book tells a Christmas version of the children’s song, “There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly.” In this story, a little old lady gulps down several holiday items: a small golden bell, green bows, some gifts, a big toy sack, a shiny red sleigh, and some flying reindeer. This wacky book will surely entertain young readers!
95. “There’s an Elf in Your Book” by Tom Fletcher
If you want Santa to bring you gifts this Christmas, you must pass the Nice List test! For this challenge, Elf will ask readers to do some nice things (blowing a kiss, singing a song, etc.) and some naughty things (burping, for instance). Make sure to only do the nice things, and don’t be fooled by Elf’s silly tricks. This one will be a hoot for older kids!
96. “Too Many Tamales” by Gary Soto
Maria feels very grown-up as she helps her mother make tamales for Christmas. While kneading the masa, she admires her mother’s ring on the table and decides to wear it. But without Maria noticing, the ring comes off in the masa! Hours later, all the family members arrive for the Christmas party, and Maria realizes she’s no longer wearing the ring. Maria and her cousins must eat through 24 tamales to find it — with hilarious consequences! (This Christmas book is also available in Spanish.)
97. “The Twelve Days of Christmas” by Jan Brett
This Jan Brett book brings the traditional Christmas carol, “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” to life. Read along (or, even better, sing along!) with the words and enjoy the elegant, rustic-looking illustrations throughout. Like the book’s cover (see above), the main picture on each page is framed by realistic images of snowy animals and winter greenery. There are also illustrations of two people who fall in love and a family decorating their home for Christmas.
98. “The Very Hungry Caterpillar’s Snowy Hide & Seek” by Eric Carle
This is a new-ish holiday board book that features the Very Hungry Caterpillar. (He’s tiny, so you’ll have to look closely to see him on each page!) Readers can play hide and seek by guessing who’s under each flap and then lifting it to reveal the winter or holiday character hiding underneath. Kids can also follow the trail on each page by moving their fingers along the paths, making this Christmas book even more interactive.
99. “The Wild Christmas Reindeer” by Jan Brett
Here’s another Jan Brett Christmas book with lovely illustrations. In the story, Santa asks a young girl named Teeka to prepare his reindeer to fly on Christmas Eve. But the wild reindeer aren’t easy to train, and Teeka isn’t very gentle in her approach; she brushes them too hard, scolds them loudly, etc. After lots of trial and error, Teeka has a change of heart and learns to be patient and kind to the reindeer. Finally, they all learn how to work together just in time for Christmas Eve.
100. “A World of Cookies for Santa” by M.E. Furman
“A World of Cookies for Santa” shows how children around the globe prepare treats for Santa Claus. This vibrant, multicultural book summarizes the Christmas cookie traditions of over 30 countries, including the Philippines, Russia, South Africa, France, Brazil, Egypt, and the United States. Plus, Christmas cookie recipes are in the back (including coconut macaroons from Christmas Island and Anzac biscuits from New Zealand), so you and your kids can make holiday treats and discover new recipes!
101. “You’re My Little Christmas Cookie” by Nicola Edwards
Last on our list is the adorable board book, “You’re My Little Christmas Cookie.” It features different parents — a gingerbread cookie, a star, a snowman, a snowflake, and a reindeer — each telling their babies how much they mean to them. Short and sweet, this book is a festive way to remind your little ones that you love them, and it has the cutest illustrations!
That wraps up our list of the best Christmas books for kids! Have you or your children read any of these stories? Are there books you would add to our list? Let us know! And we hope your family has a very Merry Christmas!