If you’re anything like me, then you love to snuggle up with a book over the Christmas holidays. In those quiet moments before dinner or bed, or in that weird limbo between boxing day and new year, I love to grab a book – and extra points if it was a gift! I wanted to share some of my recommended holiday reads so that you can feel the joy this year.
A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
What a classic! Though it may not seem like a page-turner, if you can commit to it, the story is worth your while. Though you may have read it at school, I say give it another try! There’s a reason the Muppets made a movie of it. The fantastical travels through time in Scrooge’s life really transport you, and the roast turkey at the end makes me so happy every time. This book reminds me of the importance of selflessness, and giving at Christmas time; to charity, to family, to strangers and always with love!
Northern Lights/The Golden Compass – Phillip Pullman
Though written for children, Northern Lights can bring out the adventure in all of us. Strange things are happening in Oxford, and in her quest to find out what is going on, Lyra finds herself wound up in far more nefarious matters. This book, the first entry in Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, will pull on your heartstrings and take you to strange snowy lands. It is an enthralling tale, and one of my favourite stories of all time – which makes it a perfect candidate for Christmas reading!! The nostalgia and awe of these books are what puts them on this list.
The Greatest Store in the World – Alex Shearer
As a young child, this was one of the first books I read all the way through… and then read again, and again! The magic and whimsy of the story of Geraldine, Livvie and Angel, told through Livvie’s perspective totally enraptured me. As a child, what could be better than living in a department store! It has since been made into a film, which I haven’t tried (I don’t want to ruin the fun!), but I was given this book second-hand by an Aunt, which makes me love it even more. My copy at home is bent and folded and well-thumbed – it shan’t be leaving me anytime soon! My love of this story was definitely helped by the fact it was a gift, so perhaps I will regift it one day.
The Hunting Party: Lucy Foley
Having a quiet New Years’ Eve? Foley’s characters certainly aren’t! This book is one of my favourite kinds of stories – closed community murder mysteries (yes, I also love Cluedo). The twists and turns to the plot are ENDLESS! The story is told through a rotation of the main characters’ perspectives so I promise you’ll never guess the ending! The snowy, isolating setting of the Scottish Highlands definitely helped this book make it to the list because from the 27th-30th of December, we all feel rather disconnected from reality!
I hope that at least one of these books makes it into your holiday reading roster this year and that you thoroughly enjoy it!