Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Christmas Books

We don’t always start collections; sometimes they start themselves. That is what happened when I first found a Christmas book on sale after the holidays. It then became a practice to add a Christmas book to my “collection” every year. Like collections do, this one got unruly, and I had to weed. But still, I kept some very special Christmas books on hand. I often use a beautiful Christmas book even as décor during the season.

One of my favorites is Truman Capote’s A Christmas Memory. No matter how many times I read it, it brings a lump to my throat at the end. Then there is that wonderful book The Polar Express. Don’t kid yourself, this is not a child’s story but actually an adult book. Only adults can truly grasp the pathos of not hearing the Christmas bell! No disrespect to William Hurt or Tom Hanks, but famous actors reading the book aloud almost spoiled it for me. Hearing the voices in my head was so much better than anyone else’s interpretation!

If you like westerns, the great writer (Shane) Jack Schaffer wrote a Christmas story called Stubby Pringle’s Christmas. When the school librarian was weeding old books from the shelves, I literally begged to have the copy she was tossing. Mari Sandoz wrote The Christmas of the Phonograph Record, and then there is the Louis May Alcott’s Christmas Treasury. Oh, and another goodie is the Walton’s Christmas story of Pa getting home in the snowstorm during the Great Depression.

This year I was the lucky winner of a new Christmas book from Donna’s Book Pub (www.donnasbookpub.blogspot.com).The Christmas Village by Melissa Ann Goodwin is a delightful and imaginative story of a 12 year old boy who does some time travel on Christmas Eve. His own life is saddled with worries, and while looking at his grandma’s Christmas village laid out in the living room, he wishes he could live in the old time village where people seemed happier. Jamie falls into the 1932 village where the people celebrate the Christmas season with a Depression backdrop with problems of their own.
Author Melissa Ann Goodwin tells a good old fashioned story here despite the modern element of time travel. The characters fight good and evil along with love and loss in a story bound to become another Christmas classic for readers of all ages. She ties all the ends up in a charming finale that is magical and charming, the delicious elements of any good Christmas!

So what about you? What are your favorite Christmas stories or books?


Linda O'Connell said...

Have you ever read the book The Christmas pageant? It is about family of juvenile delinquent kids. Great little book.

Bookie said...

Oh yes, I forgot that one! I have read it a few times and seen it done as a play. I think I read it the first time in one of the women's magazine. It is a classic too!

Lynn said...

I think I'm going to have to start reading more Christmas stories.

BECKY said...

I can't think of any at the moment...but I know I've read some!! Great post, Claudia!

irishoma said...

Hi Claudia,
The short story "The Gift of the Magi" is one of my favorite Christmas stories.
And I'm glad you enjoyed Melissa's book.

Susan said...

Hi Claudia....Oh, I love Polar Express, too. I used to read it to my kids and one year gave them fat gold bells of their own.

Another Christmas book I read and loved, and would REALLY love to own is "Becky's Christmas" by Tasha Tudor. Oh wow, I look in used bookstores all the time for that one. But much of her work is very expensive now...coveted, I guess.

I just saw that Santa Fe book you pictured and thumbed through it in a bookstore.

Oh, don't you just LOVE books? Take care, Claudia. Thanks for all the lovely posts. I'm finally catching up . Susan