Best Children's Books About Christmas

The Ultimate List of The Best Christmas Books

Updated Feb. 11, 2019

You better not pout, I'm telling you why: Bookroo's ultimate list of the best Christmas books ever is here to make your holiday season perfect. Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, and we've got the books to help make it even more special and festive! We've combed through the many Christmas books to find you the best of the best -- classics and hidden gems. Don't just take our word for it (or do, because we've read, rated, and tested!), we're sure you're going to rediscover old favorites and find magical new favorites. Whatever your style, just make sure to not wait until the night before Christmas to get reading, there are just too many good ones to read!

The Night Before Christmas book
#1
The Night Before Christmas
Written by Clement C Moore and illustrated by Antonio Javier Caparo
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm

This edition of the classic story has the most beautiful illustrations! A Christmas classic, this one's a must read of the season. I especially love the lift-the-flap pages that make the book extra fun.

The original tale of The Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore is now accompanied by enchanting illustrations from Antonio Caparo in this festive holiday picture book. ’Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse… Since it was first published nearly 200 years ago “The Night Before Christmas” has enchanted readers young and old with the story of St. Nicholas landing on a snowy roof, climbing down the chimney, and filling all the stockings with gifts before riding off in his sleigh, wishing “Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!” This classic poem is now accompanied by stunning, richly detailed illustrations from Antonio Caparo, illustrator of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Rudolph Shines Again. This beautiful picture book is the perfect Christmas gift.

Snowmen at Christmas book
#2
Snowmen at Christmas
Written by Caralyn Buehner and illustrated by Mark Buehner
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Thoughts from The Book Snob Mom

I LOVE the Snowmen books by the Buehners and this is no exception. Fantastic and super catchy rhymes make this super enjoyable to read aloud (and listen to!) and clever re-interpretions of everything Christmas into a snowman world give plenty of things for children to "I spy" as you go through the story.

On Christmas Eve, snowmen hold a party in the center of town and celebrate with food, music and dancing, and presents, in the companion title to Snowmen at Night.

The Day Santa Stopped Believing in Harold book
#3
The Day Santa Stopped Believing in Harold
Written by Maureen Fergus and illustrated by Cale Atkinson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Thoughts from The Book Snob Mom

This book is spunky, clever and delightful, and the perfect book for that tender age where the doubt begins to creep in. The illustrations are amazing (LOVE Cale Atkinson) and a perfect compliment to this story about the tandem doubts of Harold who doesn't believe in Santa... and Santa who doesn't believe in Harold.

Santa has a problem. This kid? Harold? Santa doesn't think he's real. He WANTS to believe in Harold--after all, Harold is one of the most magical parts of Christmas. Getting Harold's letters, eating the cookies he leaves out, feeding his carrots to the reindeer... what would Christmas be without that? But Santa's just not sure. Some of his friends are telling him they think Harold's not real. And the Harold that sat on his knee last Christmas looked AWFULLY different. Santa comes up with a plan to find out once and for all if Harold really exists... with hilarious consequences.

The Nativity book
#4
The Nativity
Written by and illustrated by Julie Vivas
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

Illustrates the story of the birth of Jesus and the arrival of the wise men and shepherds at the manger.

The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey book
#5
The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey
Written by Susan Wojciechowski and illustrated by P. J. Lynch
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm

This story was beautiful and I loved that it showed you the carvings at the bottom of the pages as they were being made. It was so sweet to learn about the nativity scene through the eyes of the young boy and see how it softened Jonathan Toomy's heart.

The spirit of Christmas heals a sorrowing woodcarver's heart in this splendid reissue of a Candlewick holiday classic, dressed in a radiant new cover. The spirit of Christmas heals a sorrowing woodcarver's heart in this splendid edition of a holiday classic, complete with a CD masterfully narrated by James Earl Jones.

Christmas Tapestry book
#6
Christmas Tapestry
Written by Patricia Polacco
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9
Thoughts from The Book Snob Mom

This is a beautiful story about the true meaning of Chrismas and seeing the beauty of the big things that matter in the midst of little stumbling blocks. Patricica Polacco's illustrations are always gorgeous, and heartwarming, and this story definitely brought tears to my eyes.

A tapestry that is being used to cover a hole in a church wall at Christmas brings together an elderly couple who were separated during World War II.

The Legend of the Poinsettia book
#7
The Legend of the Poinsettia
Written and illustrated by Tomie dePaola
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

When Lucida is unable to finish her gift for the Baby Jesus in time for the Christmas procession, a miracle enables her to offer the beautiful flower we now call the poinsettia.

Olive, the Other Reindeer book
#8
Olive, the Other Reindeer
Written by Vivian Walsh and illustrated by J.otto Seibold
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm

A very fun book about a dog who thinks he might be a reindeer. :) So cute and the story will make you smile. The illustrations in this book are absolutely beautiful and so colorful!

Thinking that "all of the other reindeer" she hears people singing about include her, Olive the dog reports to the North Pole to help Santa Claus on Christmas Eve.

The Tale of Three Trees book
#9
The Tale of Three Trees
Written by Angela Elwell Hunt and illustrated by Tim Jonke
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-4
Thoughts from The Goodfather

This is a very touching tale that is sure to become a holiday favorite. The beauty of the story is matched by the beauty of the illustrations. The story moves quickly enough to hold the attention of young readers while also having a depth that will inspire the heart of anyone reading.

Once upon a mountaintop, three little trees stood and dreamed of what they wanted to become when they grew up. Each of their dreams come true in an unexpected way in this lovely retelling of an old folk tale. This Lion classic, beloved by young and old, is now retold in simpler text for younger readers.

Auntie Claus Deluxe Edition book
#10
Auntie Claus Deluxe Edition
Written and illustrated by Elise Primavera
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

A deluxe gift edition of the modern Christmas classic, featuring an access code to a printable Christmas party kit, plus downloadable audio read by Academy Award-winning actress Ellen Burstyn! Auntie Claus is just another eccentric New Yorker—or is she? Young Sophie has often wondered about her unusual great-aunt, Auntie Claus. She lives in penthouse 25C at the Bing Cherry Hotel and is so curioso! After all, Auntie Claus serves Christmas cookies all year long and her tree is always the best-decorated in the city. And then there's her annual "business trip," right around the holidays. This year Sophie is determined to get to the bottom of Auntie Claus's mysterious ways. Put on your mittens and bundle up for an adventure beyond your wildest dreams. Ho, ho, ho!

Santa Calls book
#11
Santa Calls
Written and illustrated by William Joyce
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Three kids venture to the North Pole to help Santa defeat an army of evil elves in this holiday classic from the brilliant mind that brought you The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore. Art Atchinson Aimesworth—inventor, crime fighters, and all-around whiz kid—journeys north with his sister, Esther, and his pal Spaulding, by special invitation from Santa himself. Why did Santa call them to the North Pole? Art wants to know. But when Esther is taken by the Queen of the Dark Elves, Art must put his questions aside and save his sister. This reissue of William Joyce’s epic Christmas adventure now comes complete with lift-the-flap letters from Santa himself!

Santa Duck book
#12
Santa Duck
Written and illustrated by David Milgram
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-4
Thoughts from The Book Snob Mom

The message that helping others is more important (and even feels better!) than getting exactly what you want for Christmas is one worth remembering each holiday season, and this book does it in a silly way that won't make any child feel too self-conscious!

Nicholas Duck loves Christmas, and he is happy to try on the new Santa hat that's mysteriously delivered to his house. But when his friends see him and immediately launch into their Christmas lists, he doesn't know what to do . . . until he runs into Santa himself.

If Picasso Painted a Snowman book
#13
If Picasso Painted a Snowman
Written by Amy Newbold and illustrated by Greg Newbold
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-11
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm

Such a fun book showing how all artists have different styles. It walks through famous painters and what their snowmen might look like. I love this introduction to famous artists and their styles! It's also super fun that there's a blank canvas at the end for you to copy and create your own snowman with your own style.

-If someone asked you to paint a snowman, you would probably start with three white circles stacked one upon another. Then you would add black dots for eyes, an orange triangle for a nose, and a black dotted smile. But if Picasso painted a snowman....-

Seeking a Santa book
#14
Seeking a Santa
Written by Angela DiTerlizzi and illustrated by Allie Smith
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-4
Thoughts from The Book Snob Mom

Adorable rhymes, super bright and punchy illustrations and lots of references to Santa's myriad responsibilities and personality traits that make him beloved.

From bestselling author Angela DiTerlizzi comes a lighthearted and sweet Christmas board book perfect for little elves and Santa fans everywhere! I’m seeking a Santa And everyone knows… Your eyes must be bright With red cheeks and red nose Should have a fur hat Wear a warm, woolen suit Bring a big bag For all of the loot The search for Santa is on at the North Pole as elves, reindeer, and more share their Christmas spirit before finding the perfect St. Nick.

Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree book
#15
Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree
Written by Robert Barry
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm

This rhyming story of getting Christmas trees just right is both funny and sweet! I love the sharing that goes on and that every piece of the tree is used and cherished. The illustrations make you feel snuggly and warm, and this book really makes me want to read by the Christmas tree!

When Mr. Willowby's Christmas tree is so tall that he has to cut the top off, he unwittingly provides trees for various people and animals.

Room for a Little One: A Christmas Tale book
#16
Room for a Little One: A Christmas Tale
Written by Martin Waddell and illustrated by Jason Cockcroft
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-8

That cold winter's night, beneath the star's light... ...a Little One came for the world.

The Spirit of Christmas book
#17
The Spirit of Christmas
Written and illustrated by Nancy Tillman
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Bells jingle, sleds dash through the snow, trees are topped with sparkling stars, and children everywhere dream of candy canes and presents. But the best gift of all-the most magical gift of the season-is when we spend Christmas with those we love. Once again, this New York Times-bestselling author and artist has created a special, beautiful book that families will want to share year after year. (And readers will want to look for the Spirit of Christmas image that Nancy Tillman has hidden on every page!)

Wombat Divine book
#18
Wombat Divine
Written by Mem Fox and illustrated by Kerry Argent
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

Wombat auditions for the Nativity play, but has trouble finding the right part.

Christmas in the Manger Board Book book
#19
Christmas in the Manger Board Book
Written by Nola Buck and illustrated by Felicia Bond
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

The gentle beauty of the story of the first Christmas is now available as a board book. With a simple, lyrical text and radiant artwork, this book is perfect for the youngest child to be a part of the wonder of the Nativity.

The Littlest Elf book
#20
The Littlest Elf
Written by Brandi Dougherty and illustrated by Kirsten Richards
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

A sweet holiday story from a New York Times bestselling duo! From the New York Times bestselling team that brought us The Littlest Pilgrim comes a sweet new holiday follow-up filled with Christmas cheer and adorable stickers! Oliver may be the littlest elf in the North Pole, but he has a big desire to discover his very special job in Santa's workshop! But after getting lost in the toy shop, making a mess at the bookshop, and falling in the mixing machine at the bakery, is the littlest elf just too little? Perhaps he just needs the littlest reindeer to remind him what Christmas is all about!

The First Christmas Night book
#21
The First Christmas Night
Written by Keith Christopher and illustrated by Christine Kornacki
picture book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

A lyrical retelling of the birth of Christ, told as an adaptation of "'Twas the Night Before Christmas," follows the arrival of Mary and Joseph in Bethlehem, the birth of Jesus, the angels' appearance to the shepherds and the visit by the Wise Men.

Pick a Pine Tree book
#22
Pick a Pine Tree
Written by Patricia Toht and illustrated by Jarvis
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

"With warm joyful art and a rhythmic, read-aloud text, here is a celebration of every festive step in taking home and decorating a Christmas tree"--flyleaf.

Here Comes Santa Cat book
#23
Here Comes Santa Cat
Written by Deborah Underwood and illustrated by Claudia Rueda
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Just in time for the holidays—here comes Santa Cat! From the author of The Quiet Book and Here Comes the Easter Cat comes a hilarious holiday adventure! Cat took on a bunny in Here Comes the Easter Cat, but now Christmas is coming, and Cat has a hunch he’s not on Santa’s “nice” list. Which means? No presents for Cat. So he tries to be good, but children, it seems, aren’t wild for his brand of gift-giving. Still, Cat might surprise himself, and best of all, he may just get to meet the man in the red suit himself—and receive a holiday surprise of his own. Fans of Pete the Cat, Splat the Cat, and Bad Kitty will delight in this holiday treat.

Fancy Nancy: Splendiferous Christmas book
#24
Fancy Nancy: Splendiferous Christmas
Written by Jane O'Connor and illustrated by Robin Preiss Glasser
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Presents with elegant wrapping paper, festive decorations, Christmas cookies with sprinkles -- and who could forget the tree? After all, there is no such thing as too much tinsel. Ooh la la! This year, Nancy is especially excited about decorating the Christmas tree. She bought a brand-new sparkly tree topper with her own money and has been waiting for Christmas to come. But when things don't turn out the way Nancy planned, will Christmas still be splendiferous? In this merriest of stories from bestselling duo Jane O'Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser, Nanyc proves once again that a little fancying up can go a long, festive way!

Samurai Santa book
#25
Samurai Santa
Written and illustrated by Rubin Pingk
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm

The perfect Christmas book for all the little ninjas out there! The illustrations in this book are so cute and I love that it mostly uses black, white, and red. Plus, this book is sure to make you love Santa and his magic even more!

"Yukio wants to have a snowball fight but all the other ninjas want to stay good for Santa. So Yukio decides to sabotage Santa"--

Have a suggestion for a book to add to this list? Send an email to [email protected] with your book and list suggestion.