Light Up the Holidays With These Festive Picture Books

'Tis the season to gift the love of reading!

By Candlewick Press December 7, 2021

And just like that, the holidays are upon us once again! Carols are playing on the radio, colorful Christmas lights are going up around the neighborhood, and everyone is starting to get that enchanted holiday feeling.

It’s also officially gifting season, and what better gift for a child than a picture book? With their ability to inspire, entertain, and educate – not to mention give a welcome break from screen time – books always make an ideal gift.

There’s nothing better than sitting down to a giant pile of Christmas books together as a family, and these beautifully illustrated modern classics are a sure bet to create a Merry Christmas for all readers, year after year.

Happy giving (and happy reading)!

by Matt Tavares

Move over, Rudolph! Get to know the story of another reindeer on Santa’s original team: Dasher!

Dasher is an adventurous young reindeer with a wish in her heart. One day, when the opportunity arises, Dasher seizes her destiny and takes off in pursuit of the life she wants to live. It’s not long before she meets a certain jolly man in a red suit with a horse-drawn sleigh — a man named Santa, of course! And soon, with the help of a powerful Christmas wish, nothing will be the same.

Twenty Big Trucks in the Middle of Christmas
by Mark Lee, illustrated by Kurt Cyrus

Add a big dose of Christmas cheer to an array of trucks for counting and you have the components of read-aloud holiday magic. 

The snowy town is filling up with a procession of trucks of all shapes and sizes, including a snowplow, a crane, a digger, a semitrailer transporting the town’s majestic Christmas tree, and even a flatbed carrying Santa’s sleigh. But when the star being hoisted to the top of the Christmas tree wobbles and crashes to the ground, what could possibly be used to replace it? Thankfully, a pair of siblings scan the scene and come up with the perfect solution. 

Pick a Pine Tree
by Patricia Toht, illustrated by Jarvis

A full-page pop-up tree on the last page!

You can’t get much merrier than Pick a Pine Tree. This book joyously celebrates every festive step in the annual Christmas tree ritual: from picking out the pine tree, digging out boxes jam-packed with ornaments and tree trimmings, stringing tinsel, and, at long last, turning on those twinkling lights and waiting for Christmas morning.

So get cozy this season: Pour yourself some cocoa, grab a fuzzy blanket, and share the most magical time of the year with these festive books and the ones you love most.

Find them wherever you buy your books.