24 great Christmas books for kids I recommend
Looking for things to read with the kids this Christmas? Here are some of my favourite Christmas books for kids. I love kids books - they are great little gifts, they are fantastic learning tools and they are fun, and in the best books, the stories and illustrations are a delight to adults too. I love children's Christmas books, they always get me in a Christmas mood and I love reading them to my kids over December. So if you are looking for some Christmas book ideas for kids - here is some inspiration for a book advent calendar, or a Christmas gift, or just a special Christmas-time bedtime story.
I've started with picture books and books for slightly older kids, and at the bottom included my favourite baby and toddler Christmas books. I've added links to the book recommendations as well. These are affiliate links, which means if you buy through these links I get a few pennies at no extra cost to you.
If you need a fast delivery... I've got Amazon Prime, and you can get a free 30-day trial through this link if you live in UK and this link if you live in US! I've had it two years now and love it for quick free deliveries, and the added benefit of streaming films, TV shows and music.
Chapter books for Christmas
1. How Winston delivered Christmas: A Christmas Story in Twenty-Four-and-a-Half Chapters. (Amazon UK / Amazon US)
This is a really sweet story of a mouse who finds a letter to Santa and sets out to deliver it. The book is meant to be read one chapter at a time, and there is on chapter until Christmas. Every chapter includes a Christmassy craft/bake/task, so gives you ideas for Christmas activities too. Cute illustrations.
I'd recommend this to kids aged 5-9, especially craft-loving kids. Great book to include as the 1st book in a book advent due to the format.
The stories are inspired by Beatrix Potter's original stories. Similar format as the Winston book - so 24 short stories to be read each day, and an activity to do, so perfect to have from the beginning of December. Adorable stories and illustrations, and the activities are simple to do with kids, so shouldn't take long to set up.
I love anything by Katherine Rundell, one of my favourite children's authors. This book has somewhat Nutcracker vibes, and gorgeous illustrations. More of a bigger book to read, so would work well for young readers starting with chapter books.
Picture books and shorter stories
This is such a funny book - it is about panty-obsessed aliens who foil Santa's delivery of gifts and insist on giving pants as gifts and decorating everything with kids. It is surreal and silly, definitely kiddy-type of humour. I think it appeals well to kids potty-training and upwards, up to the age of 7.
Again, this is a type of book that appeal to kids because they are just so silly. And talk about poop which is even sillier.
Mog is such a Christmas classic - the illustrations are beautiful and it has that old-fashioned feel many of us parents remember from our own childhoods. The book I have is the 2015 charity version made for Sainsburys, and difficult to find now, but you can buy the original Mog's Christmas (to which I've provided links to) in any major bookstore and it is just as charming a story. My kids love it, and it does have a great appeal to young kids who love animals. I'd recommend this for kids 2-6 years of age.
I like that this isn't about Santa or elves, but about picking a Christmas tree and decorating it. Perfect book to introduce before you are going to get a tree! Illustrations are gorgeous and very detailed. There is also a beautiful glittering pop-up of a decorated Christmas tree on the last page. It is American English so may grate some British readers - although I doubt kids would notice. The rhyming for the most part is snappy and well done, but a couple of rhymes are a bit odd - like bow with robes. Overall I would recommend this for ages 3-8.
You might also like: How to do a Christmas book advent calendar
It is a cute story and illustrations. We have the London-specific book and Santa flies across London and all the major landmarks are shown - really nice when you love here. The story includes the Santa delivering the presents and then hiding in the house as the kid wakes up at night and goes downstairs - it is quite funny! You can get this book as a generic copy or specifying some cities - surprisingly many actually! Up to 120, in US, Canada, and UK. Well worth a short Google session or check the links I provided.
Such a classic. What more can I say? I love the illustrations and the story is such a great narrative about finding your Christmas spirit.
Oliver Jeffers' books are just delightful. If you have read his previous Crayon books, this one continues the same stories, which is a nice touch. This books stands alone, but if you are a fan of his work, this is a nice little connection between books. There are lots of activities, pop-up Christmas tree and it is a very fun and exciting book.
Supersweet story about one of the reindeers. We all know about Rudolph, but how about the others? This is about Dasher and how he came to be with Santa.
Richard Curtis's story, illustrated by Rebecca Cobb - love both. The story is about twins, one is naughty and the other nice, and what happens when Santa leaves one an empty stocking... Great story, and perfect for siblings!
The illustrations are stunning and the story magical with pages with doors that open - and the story would be helpful for any child that doesn't get to spend the Christmas together with loved ones.
Another classic story, of a boy whisked to Christmas magic on Christmas Eve. It has also been made into an animated film.
I really like this book and my kids love it too. It is about a hedgehog who gets a Christmas gift, but it doesn't quite fit him so he tries to give it to his friends - a lovely story about friendship and kindness. Kids also love to feel the felted hat on each page.
Fantastic and a classic activity book, with folder letters and games. You would probably have to supervise your kids with this so they don't lose the letters, as those are the ones that really make this. Adorable illustrations.
Adorable illustrations, of a robin that gives his vests away. A great story about kindness and gift giving.
Another classic classic book of Christmas. There are so many versions of this book, I prefer the slightly old-fashioned illustrations as I think they add to the character of the book. Perfect one to read on Christmas Eve, as it is about Santa arriving to your house...
Babies and toddlers
I find for toddlers and babies, they get really into some characters and love them more than others. Spot seems to be one of the ones that all kids love - it is a cute little puppy dog. This is a short flap book that toddlers will love.
Who doesn't love these touchy feely books That's Not My... by Usborne for the little ones! We have the reindeer one but I know there are ones with a Santa, a snowman and a penguin too if you would prefer one of those. The final page reveals 'your' reindeer, after many others with touchy-feely fuzzy coats or shiny noses and so on.
21. Peppa' Christmas Jumper Day (Amazon UK)
I am not sure if Christmas Jumper Day is a specifically English tradition - but this book is a great introduction to the idea for little ones, and how your jumper can be home-crafted as well. Peppa's old jumper fits George, but since she hasn't got one and they don't have time to go to the shop, Daddy Pig fashions Peppa a Christmas jumper himself.
Cute story and great for little Peppa Pig fans! Peppa and George spot Santa on Christmas Night - great one to read on Christmas Eve to get kids excited!
A traditional flap book from the creator of Dear Zoo - it is exactly the same format but with Santa! My toddler loves this one, just as much as she loves Dear Zoo.
I love Usborne books - they are always really well made with plenty of areas of interest for kids. This is a board book and includes plenty of peep holes showing the next page scenes, there is also one flap. The Nutcraker is such a great Christmas classic as well and great to see at ballet with kids. As it's a board book great for babies and toddlers, but the story and illustrations are suitable for pre-schoolers too.
So plenty of books to choose from - I hope these gave you some ideas! Most of the links are for Amazon so if you need a fast delivery, Amazon Prime is great. You can get a free 30-day trial through this link if you live in UK and this link if you live in US!
I'd love to hear if you have any Christmas book recommendations for kids too! What is your favourite one?