Jessica Day George

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

It's time for Christmas reading!

Every year I look forward to watching Christmas movies, listening to Christmas music, and most of all, reading my Christmas books. I try to add to all these things each year, and I love to recommend them to others!

So I proudly present to you my list of things not to be missed this Christmas season!

To Listen:

The Barenaked Ladies, Barenaked for the Holidays!
Includes Hanukkah songs, by the way, a mix of traditional and new tunes that is great for car listening and singing along.

Sarah McLachlan, Wintersong
She has such an amazing voice! This is a beautiful and soothing collection.

David Sedaris, Six to Eight Black Men
I'm not sure which of his audio collections you can find this in, but his story of learning about Dutch Christmas traditions has me in tears (of laughter) every time.

Mannheim Steamroller, Christmas in the Aire
Great for dancing around, baking cookies, decorating.

To Watch:


Just when you thought there couldn't be a new holiday classic, Jon Favreau made the world's most perfect Christmas movie. I loved it that he didn't have to give up his innocence and become cynical and worldly to survive, instead, his joy and love of Christmas changed everyone else.

A Christmas Story
You'll shoot your eye out, kid! Ho! Ho! Ho!

The Muppet Christmas Carol
A remarkably faithful version of Dickens' classic, with music and singing vegetables!

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Always delightful.

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians
Better with Mystery Science Theater 3000 commentary, but still so bad it's good!

A Charlie Brown Christmas
Simply a must-watch. (Memo to Linus: you're a smart kid, people would take you more seriously if you lost the blanket.)

And now, to READ:

Miracle and Other Christmas Stories
, by Connie Willis
A stellar collection of Christmas stories, some tender, some funny, some even a little bit scary, in Willis' superb style. The last story, Epiphany, is to be read AFTER Christmas, and is my favorite.

Let it Snow! by Maureen Johnson, John Green, and Lauren Myracle
New last year, this is three interwoven stories by some of the best contemporary YA writers on the scene right now.

The Legend of Holly Claus, by Brittney Ryan
A beautiful fairy tale about Santa's daughter, a gifted dollmaker cursed to have a heart of snow.

Skipping Christmas, by John Grisham
I beg you: ignore the dreadful movie version, Christmas with the Kranks. This is the tale of a modern day Scrooge, by turns frustrating (in a good way), funny, and at the last moving.

A Highland Christmas, by M.C. Beaton
I actually haven't read this yet, but a Hamish MacBeth Christmas mystery? Sign me right up!

Don't Bite Me, I'm Santa Claus! by Tom Plummer
A hilarious collection of essays and anecdotes about Tom, a German professor, his writer wife, and their children.

Miss Davenport's Christmas, by Marion Chesney
For those who love Regency-anything, a lighthearted romance about two repressed young misses celebrating their first real Christmas and meeting two dashing young lords!

Picture books:
Snowmen at Night, Snowmen at Christmas
Auntie Claus
Santa Calls
A Small Miracle
Robert Sabuda's Twelve Days of Christams and The Christmas Alphabet
Bob the Little Reindeer and Six More
(by Sandra Boynton)
Olive, the Other Reindeer
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
A Wish for Wings That Work
Red Ranger Came Calling
The Dinosaurs' Night Before Christmas
The Christmas Tapestry

My gift to you! Enjoy them all!

Merry Christmas!


SandyKay said...

Just pulled out Dinosaurs' Night Before Christmas for the season, and I don't know if I should thank you or not, as I have been hounded nonstop by my child for the past 4 days to read "Dinosaur Bismas" AND we listened to the CD no less than 50 times today. I love you, Al Roker, but enough's enough. You know how to pick 'em, Jessica!

Alice said...

Thanks for the great suggestions. I'll have to try some of them. ANother hilarious Christmas movie that's one of my family's favorites is Jingle all the Way.

Gayla said...

Oh, you are missing some wonderful Christmas Books! There's Christmas By the Book by Beverly King and Twas the Night Before by Jerry B. Jenkins and my all time favorite Christmas Jars by Jason F. Wright!!!

edith said...

May I recommend a lovely book illustrated by my father-in-law--"The Santa Claus Book" (It is written and illustrated by "Alden Perkes" who is a construct. The real author and illustrator are written in fine print on the library of congress page.)
BUT--it's out of print. You can buy it but only as a spendy collector's item. Try your library. It's worth it, believe me.

Mad Hadder said...

What??? No Harvey Schlumpfenberger's Christmas Present???????

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