Sunday, December 18, 2011
Christmas Stories New & Old
Though there's no snow falling here yet (and that's more than fine with me!), books are always calling! This time of year, it's time to dig out the old Christmas favorites and find some new favorites, too.
Some Christmas stories are standards based on songs or poems, such as "Rudolph" and "Frosty." Some are classics, such as Dickens' A Christmas Carol and Clement Moore's A Visit From St. Nicholas.
Two new Christmas books for children (which really means "all ages," don't you think?) popular in my region reflect the heritages of many of my area's residents. Virginia Driving Hawk Sneve, a South Dakota author, brings us a memory from her childhood on the Rosebud Reservation. The Christmas Coat: Memories of My Sioux Childhood takes us into the not-so-distant past on the plains. Virginia really needs a new winter coat, but so do the other kids she knows. When charity boxes arrive (called "Theast boxes" because they come from "The East"), a beautiful fur coat tempts her. But Virginia knows that, as the minister's daughter, she won't get first choice. Read the book to see how things work out for Christmas joy. The illustrations by Ellen Beier provide accurate detail of the times and situations to complement the story.
Jan Brett's new Christmas book, Home for Christmas features Rollo, the runaway Swedish troll. Brett's signature border art and depiction of the action make this a fun story for young and old. Rollo has adventures with many different animals before he finds that home may be best after all.
For more Christmas book ideas, see this list from Horn Book magazine.
We love stories of Santa, elves, trolls, and other magical creatures, but for me, Christmas magic is best told in the original Christmas story from the book of Luke. See Linus, of "Peanuts" fame, recite it in this 2 minute clip:
What stories are you delighting in this season?