Rudy’s Windy Christmas by: Helen Baugh and Ben Mantle was by far one of the most original Christmas books I have EVER read. This is NOT your grandmother’s ‘little golden books’ version of Rudolph the red nosed reindeer. The story revolves primarily around brussel sprouts and every little boy’s (yes, my son picked this book) favorite word to laugh at- FARTS. Even Mrs. Claus gets in on the action at the end. A hilariously flatulent family read!
Dinosaur VS. Santa by: Bob Shea contains short and sweet sentences which makes it a great book for my daughter who is just learning to read. Don’t let the lack of words fool you though- the illustrations will have you and your kids rolling on the floor.
Turkey Claus by: Wendi Silvano is a great book to read during the transition from Thanksgiving to Christmas. A poor turkey has just escaped Thanksgiving dinner and is about to breathe a little turkey sigh of relief when he overhears the farmer’s wife planning him as the main course for Christmas dinner! Taking matters into his own wings, he hitch-hikes to the north pole to ask the jolly man himself for a favor. After trying on several silly disguises to get past Santa’s ‘elf bouncers’ good old St. Nick saves the day with pizza for all!
A Piñata in a Pine Tree by: Pat Mora puts a fun Latino twist on the classic ’12 Days of Christmas’ song. I enjoyed the originality of the story as well as the educational aspect. Your kids will learn counting in both English and Spanish as well as some basic Spanish vocabulary. Don’t speak a lick of Spanish? Don’t sweat it, there’s a translation table in the back of the book and the illustrations give you plenty of clues as to the meaning of the words.
I loved Too Many Tamales by: Gary Soto and Ed Martinez. I could so easily transcribe my own child hood misadventures with my hordes of cousins with Maria’s. Maria is at that stage where she is no longer really a child, but that doesn’t mean she can resist all of child hood’s mischevious curiosity. While helping her mother make tamales for her family’s holiday celebration she believes that she accidentally dropped her mother’s ring into the filling. She makes her poor cousins secretly eat all of them in an attempt to find the ring before her mother notices. When she finally comes clean to her mother about both the ring and the missing dinner she is forgiven as only one’s family can forgive and they all come together to re-make the tamales.
I will admit that Narwhal’s True Christmas Wish by: Lisa Ann Scott made me squirt out a few of those ‘good tears’. I didn’t think a book about a narwhal could almost bring me to tears, but here we are. Nigel Narwhal is a very selfless little ocean dwelling fellow that, after being told he couldn’t possibly have his one true Christmas wish, see’s Santa accidentally drop someone else’s true Christmas wish in the ocean. He becomes a great role model for children as he takes on the difficult task of returning the gift. Along the way he is scared, but he doesn’t give up. He needs help so he asks for it. He needs guidance so he finds it. And in the act of returning the other gift he gets his one true wish as well- to become one of Santa’s helpers!
Merry Christmas, Splat by: Rob Scotton caught my attention right away with the title and cover art. Anyone with kids can appreciate the story of a young kitten trying to be extra good for Christmas but winds up inadvertently ‘unhelping’ his mom by washing dishes that are already clean and knocking down the Christmas tree by ‘redecorating it’. At the end Splat discovers he really was a good enough kitten and that sometimes it’s really the thought that truly counts!
As always, don’t forget to enjoy all these books for FREE at your local library!! Happy holiday reading!!