Books for Christmas

A a stocking filler, a present wrapped and ribboned under the tree, a ‘snuggledown’ bedtime read, a story for the car, plane or train or to read to the class, a book makes a wonderful gift. There are so many seasonal classics to choose from but here are a few to add to Santa’s list. Jan Homden


Click on the book covers to follow a link to Amazon

Baby’s First Cloth Book: Christmas Rag Book – 11 Sep 2018 by Nosy Crow (Author), Lisa Jones (Illustrator), Edward Underwood (Illustrator)

One in a series of soft, cloth books with a cloth-and-Velcro handle that can be strapped on to a stroller and pages that are just right for tiny hands. These appealing books combine vibrant images of faces and animals, high-contrast patterns, first words, and the simplest of stories, making them ideal gifts for babies.

Lisa Jones began designing and hand-printing her own line of greeting cards with the help of her partner, Edward Underwood, in their London studio in 2000. Drawing on their backgrounds in art and fashion, they’ve since stocked the world’s finest galleries, museums, boutiques, and department stores with stylish wares. Lisa Jones and Edward Underwood live in the South Downs, in England.


Kipper’s Christmas Eve Board Book Hardcover – 6 Oct 2016 by Mick Inkpen (Author)

Age Range: 3 – 5 years

Another Kipper musing: ‘Which is best, Kipper wonders, Christmas Day or Christmas Eve? Presents, or expecting presents?” It’s Christmas Eve and Kipper and his friends are preparing for the big day. Decorating the tree, exchanging presents and sharing in all the excitement together.’

Full of festive cheer, this charming story is perfect for reading together at Christmas time. A classic Kipper story in a chunky board book, perfect for little hands to hold.’


“Kipper has touched a chord with children and parents alike” – Practical Parenting 

“The charmingly comical Inkpen, as always, hits the spot” – Guardian


Winnie-the-Pooh: Pooh’s Snowy Day Paperback – 27 Aug 2015  by Egmont Publishing UK (Author), Andrew Grey (Illustrator)

Snow is falling in the Hundred Acre Wood, and Winnie-the-Pooh and Piglet have a light-bulb moment  – why not build a house for Eeyore? This heartwarming story is one of three festive stories and a perfect stocking filler for Pooh fans aged 2 and up. With beautiful illustrations by Andrew Grey in the style of the original artwork by E. H. Shepard.


Winnie-the-Pooh: Pooh’s Christmas Adventure by Egmont Publishing UK Paperback

Winnie-the-Pooh: Pooh’s Christmas Letters by A. A. Milne Paperback


Snow (Four Seasons of Walter de la Mare) Board book – Abridged, 2 Nov 2017 by Walter de la Mare (Author), Carolina Rabei  (Illustrator) Age Range: 4 – 5 years

‘No breath of wind,
No gleam of sun
Still the white snow
Whirls softly down’

A magical book that is beautifully illustrated by Carolina Rabei whose artwork reveals ‘a unique mix of practices as she explores the use of traditional as well as digital techniques in her illustrations.’

‘Snow’ is depicted in a palette of restricted muted tones that contrast with the warm pops of red to highlight the cosy indoors where the family are preparing for Christmas, and the crisp, snowy outdoors that is home to woodland creatures and a forest playground where the children go sleighing and build snowmen. With lots of lovely detail for young readers to notice and include in their enjoyment of retelling the story from the pictures.

For a taster watch 46 seconds of magic!


Once Upon a Snowstorm – Paperback 1 Nov 2018 by Richard Johnson (Author). Age range: 3 – 6 years

This book was shortlisted for the World Illustration Awards 2018, Professional Children’s Books Category.

‘I quickly decided to remove any words from the book and concentrated on trying to tell the story purely through imagery, developing the characters and sequencing the sections together. The silent picture-book format also encourages a more personal interpretation of its story, perhaps determined by discussions between parent and child. It is my hope that children will enjoy the story as a magical winter adventure, a tale of friendship and discovery.’ Richard Johnson

Join a boy on his memorable and atmospheric journey as he tries to find his way home through a snowy, forested, mountainous landscape to Dad and the cabin where they live. Although waylaid by forest creatures who befriend him and include him in their fun he still misses Dad and wants to go back home. Bear escorts him home where the boy and his Dad, thanks to the animals, no longer continue to live a lonely, isolated existence but enjoy the companionship of new friends. A story as magical as the enchanting snowflakes.


Coming Home – Hardcover – 23 Oct 2018 by Michael Morpurgo M B E (Author), Kerry Hyndman (Illustrator) Age range: 5 – 8 years

A determined little robin, sets out on a lonely, epic journey from Scandinavia to return to his mate in England in time for Christmas and to share Christmas bird cake. The urgency of the robin’s longing to return home is portrayed in Morpurgo’s beautifully poetic narrative.

I must be on my way, on my way.

Safe in the shadows. Safe among trees.

Darting, flitting, swooping and soaring.

Onwards, upwards. Long way to go. Get there I must. Get there I will.

Coming Home reminds us of a relatively unknown natural phenomenon; while some robins do, of course, live in our gardens all year long, some migrate hundreds of miles just to winter in our gardens.

“Like them, so many of us make the long journey home for Christmas. So this Christmas, look out for a robin.  We have more in common than we realise” – Michael Morpurgo

Listen to this beautiful story read by Michael Morpurgo


Christmas Truce: A True Story of World War 1 – Hardcover – May 2, 2017 by Aaron Shepard  (Author), Wendy Edelson (Illustrator) Age Range: 9 – 12 years

One night of peace in a world of war. 

‘In this fictional letter – illustrated in authentic detail by Wendy Edelson – award-winning author Aaron Shepard draws from firsthand accounts of soldiers at the front to portray the truce in its true nature and spirit.



Christmas Day, 1914

My dear sister Janet,

It is 2:00 in the morning and most of our men are asleep in their dugouts – yet I could not sleep myself before writing to you of the wonderful events of Christmas Eve. In truth, what happened seems almost like a fairy tale, and if I hadn’t been through it myself, I would scarce believe it. Just imagine: While you and the family sang carols before the fire there in London, I did the same with enemy soldiers here on the battlefields of France!

The Christmas Truce of 1914 is one of the most extraordinary incidents not only of World War I but of all military history. Providing inspiration for songs, books, plays, and movies, it has endured as an archetypal image of peace. Yet much about the historic event remains shrouded in myth and legend.’

Listen to the story being read by The Chamber Readers.


Emily Brown and Father Christmas – Hardcover – 4 Oct 2018 by Cressida Cowell  (Author), Neal Layton (Illustrator) Age Range: 3 – 5 years

It was Christmas Eve. Emily Brown and Stanley, her grey haired rabbit, were tucked up in bed reading each other a story, when from outside their bedroom window came the cry ‘Ho-Ho-Help’! Father Christmas was hanging by a rope from the roof! It’s Emily and Stanley to the rescue in more ways than one! The story line will appeal greatly to a young audience while award winning Neal Layton’s cartoon-style characters just reinforce the fun of this festive tale.



Jan Homden, Consilium Education

An early years teaching specialist and designer, Jan has taught in international schools around the world. She has also worked with a leading architectural practice in Istanbul and is now responsible for design and research at Consilium Education.







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