Read All About It: It’s the Holidays!
Below is a selection of books and movies reflecting some of the Library’s suggestions for the winter holidays. If your favorite holiday isn’t represented, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org, and the Librarians can help.
Happy Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanzaa to all, and to all a good night!
For Adult Readers
Curated by the Literature and Fiction Dept.
American Christmas Stories
Edited by Connie Willis
This volume includes 59 stories referencing how Christmas is celebrated and written about in America. The themes in the stories pay homage to the sacred and the secular aspects of the holiday, and reflect the diversity of America, beginning with the Civil War up to modern times.
A Child’s Christmas in Wales
The hardcopy is lovely and wonderful. However, it is the recorded version with Dylan Thomas reading that is the absolute gem, with his beautiful phrasing and sonorous voice. This version is available on E-Audio (A Child’s Christmas in Wales and Five Poems)
A Christmas Memory; One Christmas; The Thanksgiving Visitor
Truman Capote’s loving memories about living in rural Alabama with relatives, one of whom was as much an outsider as the young Truman, portrayed as Buddy. These stories capture the spirit of love and gratitude that should be part of the holiday season.
For Young Adult Readers
Curated by Librarians Llyr Heller and Amanda Charles
Recommended for You
Shoshanna Greenberg loves working at Once Upon, her favorite local bookstore. With her moms fighting at home, the store has become an escape. When her boss announces a holiday bonus to the person who sells the most books, Shoshanna sees an opportunity to get her car fixed. The only person standing in her way? New hire Jake Kaplan. He doesn’t even read! But somehow his sales start to rival hers. As the competition intensifies, Jake and Shoshanna might be more on the same page than either expects. (Adapted from jacket.)
All I Want for Christmas Is the Girl Next Door
Graham Wallace has been in love with the girl next door for a decade. Unfortunately, she’s been dating his best friend for the past two years. Out of sheer desperation, Graham makes a wish on a shooting star – all he wants for Christmas is Sarah Clarke. When Graham wakes up the next morning, everything has changed, and he’s the one who’s been dating Sarah for the past two years, not his best friend. Graham assumes the wish would have come true only if he and Sarah were meant to be together, but as it becomes clear that he and Sarah bring out the worst in each other, not the best, and as he starts to fall for the new girl in town, Graham wonders if some wishes come true to show us what’s not meant to be. (Adapted from jacket.)
Four Latinx teens make New Year’s resolutions for one another – and a whirlwind of a year follows. (Adapted from jacket.)
How to Excavate a Heart
Jake Maia Arlow
Queer, Jewish Shani’s winter break is derailed by unexpected romance in this frothy enemies-to-lovers holiday rom-com. Shani is intent on leaving her disastrous first semester at college behind her. Determined not to think about how her girlfriend broke her heart, she plans to focus solely on her internship at the Smithsonian. That gets off to a rough start when, trying to navigate snow-laden streets, she and her mother almost run over a pedestrian with their car. Despite the hiccup, Shani dives headfirst into her internship until a dog-walking gig puts her face-to-face with Jewish May, the girl she almost ran over. Their relationship is civil at best, but when they’re snowed in together on Christmas Eve, their antagonism thaws. May and Shani’s clever banter, coupled with their myriad relationship ups and downs, make for a cozy and sharply funny confection. Main characters cue as white. (Adapted from a review.)
So, This Is Christmas
Christmas Ornaments: 27 Charming Decorations to Make, From Wreaths and Garlands to Baubles and Table Centerpieces
Christine Bellstedt Myers
Knitted Gifts for All Seasons: Easy Projects to Make and Share
For Young Readers
Curated by the Librarians of the Children’s Literature Dept.
May Your Life Be Deliciosa
Michael Genhart; illustrated by Loris Lora
A grandmother shares her wisdom along with the Christmas Eve tradition of making tamales.
Life is Good
This early chapter book tells the story of a farm dog experiencing snow for the first time. A cozy read for cold weather days.
Red and Green and Blue and White: Inspired by a True Story
Lee Wind, illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky
A community’s beautiful response to an act of hate brings together people of different religious traditions during the holiday season.
Susan Edwards Richmond, illustrated by Stephanie Fizer Coleman
Narrator Ava shares her experience of participating in the National Audubon Society’s annual Christmas Bird Count. She and the members of her Count Circle spend one Sunday in December documenting every bird they see in their neighborhood. An afterward includes additional information about more than 20 bird species, as well as an Author’s Note with more information about how the reader can become a citizen scientist just like Ava!
Creating Winter Crafts
Dana Meachen Rau, illustrated by Kathleen Petelinsek
A brief overview of the major winter holidays (Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year’s) precedes instructions for making eight fun crafts to enhance celebrations and create lasting memories. Includes a glossary, index, and links to additional information.
Jeron Ashford, illustrated by Stacey Schuett
The heartwarming story of a stubby candle that provides light just when it is needed, as it is shared by the diverse community living in an apartment building. Backmatter provides brief information about Havdalah, Saint Lucia Day and Kwanzaa.
Lynne Rae Perkins
Thomas and Lucy make a new friend and start an annual holiday tradition after a series of mistakes involving the ingredients for wintercake, in this picture book by Newbery Award Medalist Perkins.
Twinkle, Twinkle, Winter Night
A cozy bedtime story tells about all the lights that twinkle on a cold December night, including those celebrating a variety of winter holidays.