The Christmas season always brings forth a wealth of new books for young readers and their parents. Some titles feature traditional stories, some feature familiar characters, and some buck tradition and throw readers a curveball. The Abilene Public Library offers many choices to satisfy all tastes.
Clement Moore's A Visit from Saint Nicholas (better known to most as The Night Before Christmas) has been popular since it first appeared in 1823. Illustrator Amanda Beck has brought the classic poem into the modern age with a new edition featuring LEGO bricks. Richard Watson provides a 50s retro version with an aviator Santa delivering gifts with the help of his multicultural elves. For a more traditional rendition of the poem, try the Charles Santore edition. The gentle illustrations in this version have a soft glow to them and make a perfect choice for pre-bedtime reading sessions.
Publishers and authors are always trying to keep up with the interests of kids by featuring popular characters or topics. It is not unusual to see Christmas stories featuring aliens, dinosaurs, superheroes and more. In Dinosaur vs. Santa by Bob Shea, a lively young dino is trying very hard to get ready for Christmas. He has written to Santa, made presents, and tried very hard to be extra good. Will he end up on the naughty list? Shea's red dino has been featured in several previous volumes battling bedtime, the potty, and the library. His Christmas battle is just as energetic.
Ninjas are also surging in popularity. In Samurai Santa by Rubin Pingk, Yukio wants nothing more than to have an epic snowball fight. Unfortunately, all the other ninja's want to avoid ending up on Santa's naughty list so they do their best to avoid the battle. Yukio decides to sabotage Santa. Things turn out for the best as we discover that the snowball fight was Santa's gift to Yukio.
Kids sometimes have a difficult time waiting for Christmas to finally arrive. This is the problem Little Pip has in Mark Sperring's How Many Sleeps 'til Christmas? Daddy Grizzle helps him get through the last four sleeps with some shopping, card writing, and snowman building. The illustrations by Sebastien Braun are warm and welcoming and the story has a satisfying ending.
For a heartwarming tale of Christmas, try The Last Christmas Tree by Stephen Krensky. If ever a scraggly little evergreen needed Charlie Brown to come to the rescue, it is the little one. Despite being overlooked by every shopper who passes, this scrawny sapling is filled with hope. Christmas miracles do happen, though. A certain red-clad fellow swoops down in his sleigh on Christmas Eve to find that special tree needed at the North Pole.
The Christmas list goes on and on. You can also find Christmas titles in eFormat. Check out OverDrive for titles such as How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Merry Christmas Caillou, Mickey's Christmas Carol, the Best Christmas Pageant Ever, and more. There are also many Christmas books and movies for kids available through our Hoopla services. Check with the library staff about accessing these features.
Article Contributed by Marie Noe, Customer Services Manager at the Main Branch of the Abilene Public Library