image of happy family of four on floor in front of the Christmas tree reading a book together

22 Fascinating Christmas Read Alouds The Entire Family Will Love {Seriously…}

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Spoiler Alert: This list is filled with some of our very favorite books to read aloud during the Christmas season. As soon as the Thanksgiving turkey is put away, I love finding delightful Christmas read alouds for the whole family. These Christmas chapter books will keep everyone entertained – from kindergarten up through early and late elementary and even middle and high school. Look no further for the most enthralling Christmas read alouds that you could ever want.

image of father with two young children reading a story - lights in the background suggest the holiday season and a Christmas family read aloud

My favorite part of the holiday season is getting to spend a bit more time with those that I love.

I’m not going to lie – some years ago, I would never have thought of reading aloud as “time together.” But now, we make time to read aloud everyday – holiday or not – and I wouldn’t give it up for anything.

Since we began homeschooling, I’ve learned the value of reading aloud. I’ve discovered the joy that we find in sharing extraordinary experiences with one another. What could be more extraordinary than traveling together to far off lands, meeting new and different people – all through stories?

Research is sort of my sweet spot at the intersection of genius and joy. So I love searching, scouring bookstores, booklists, and special secret sources for fabulous books to share with my boys.

Then I enjoy passing all my work and discovery along to you. It would be a shame to keep it to myself.

One note, all the books on this list are considered middle grade novels. In literary jargon, that means that the lead characters are middle school age. It doesn’t have anything to do with the age of the reader, or reflect upon the age of child or adult who would enjoy the story. A few of these skew younger and a few skew a bit older – but all are middle grade and appropriate for everyone from your kindergartner to your grandpa – and all family members in between!

grandfather and grandson in a warm embrace on the sofa while reading a story together - suggesting holiday or Christmas chapter books

But whichever books you decide upon, don’t forget the most important thing when kids are concerned: SNACKS!

Cozy Hygge Inspired Nom Noms!

I’ve collected over 20 super cozy recipes for you. Food always keeps everyone’s attention while you read and they are eating! There’s something for every taste bud – rigatoni, beef stew, homemade fig and proscuitto pizzas, and on and on.

enjoy!
  1. Winterhouse (Winterhouse, 1)

    Orphan Elizabeth Somers’s malevolent aunt and uncle ship her off to the ominous Winterhouse Hotel, owned by the peculiar Norbridge Falls. Upon arrival, Elizabeth quickly discovers that Winterhouse has many charms―most notably its massive library. It’s not long before she locates a magical book of puzzles that will unlock a mystery involving Norbridge and his sinister family. But the deeper she delves into the hotel’s secrets, the more Elizabeth starts to realize that she is somehow connected to Winterhouse. As fate would have it, Elizabeth is the only person who can break the hotel’s curse and solve the mystery.

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  2. Greenglass House

    It’s wintertime at Greenglass House. The creaky smuggler’s inn is always quiet during this season, and twelve-year-old Milo, the innkeepers’ adopted son, plans to spend his holidays relaxing.

    But on the first icy night of vacation, out of nowhere, the guest bell rings. Then rings again. And again...

    Soon Milo’s home is bursting with odd, secretive guests, each one bearing a strange story that is somehow connected to the rambling old house. As objects go missing and tempers flare, Milo and Meddy, the cook’s daughter, must decipher clues and untangle the web of deepening mysteries to discover the truth about Greenglass House—and themselves.

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  3. Breadcrumbs

    Once upon a time, Hazel and Jack were best friends. But that was before he stopped talking to her and disappeared into a forest with a mysterious woman made of ice. Now it's up to Hazel to go in after him. Inspired by Hans Christian Andersen's "The Snow Queen," Breadcrumbs is a stunningly original fairy tale of modern-day America, a dazzling ode to the power of fantasy, and a heartbreaking meditation on how growing up is as much a choice as it is something that happens to us.

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  4. Running on the Roof of the World

    Tash lives in Tibet, where as a practicing Buddhist she must follow many rules to avoid the wrath of the occupying Chinese soldiers. Life remains peaceful as long as Tash, her family, and their community hide their religion and don’t mention its leader, the Dalai Lama.

     

    The quiet is ruptured when a man publicly sets himself on fire to protest the occupation. In the crackdown that follows, soldiers break into Tash’s house and seize her parents. Tash barely escapes, and soon she and her best friend, Sam, along with two borrowed yaks, flee across the mountains, where they face blizzards, hunger, a treacherous landscape, and the constant threat of capture.

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  5. Voyage of the Frostheart

    In a snow-covered land where monsters rule the icy tundra, only song weavers hold the power to control these vicious giants. But for centuries song weavers have been the subject of suspicion--how can those who hold so much power be trusted?


    Ever since his parents were lost on a pathfinding expedition, Ash has spent his life as an outcast. As a budding song weaver, his village marked him as a potential threat, even though all he wants to do is protect them. Eager to find his place in the world, he and his cantankerous yeti caretaker seek passage on the Frostheart: a ship-like sleigh whose mission is to explore faraway lands.


    There he meets a fast-talking, spunky navigator, a walrus captain with a peg leg who runs a tight sleigh, and a mysterious traveler who encourages him to hone his song. But can Ash's song weaving save the Frostheart from the monsters hiding under the ice? Or will his untamed powers put his newfound friends in jeopardy?

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  6. Snow Treasure

    In the bleak winter of 1940, Nazi troops parachuted into Peter Lundstrom's tiny Norwegian village and held it captive. Nobody thought the Nazis could be defeated—until Uncle Victor told Peter how the children could fool the enemy. It was a dangerous plan. They had to slip past Nazi guards with nine million dollars in gold hidden on their sleds. It meant risking their country's treasure—and their lives.

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  7. Dickens at Christmas

    It is said that Charles Dickens invented Christmas, and within these pages you'll certainly find all the elements of a quintessential traditional Christmas brought to vivid life: snowy rooftops, gleaming shop windows, steaming bowls of punch, plum puddings like speckled cannon balls, sage and onion stuffing, miracles, magic, charity and goodwill.

    This beautifully produced Vintage Classics edition gathers together not only Dickens' Christmas Books ('A Christmas Carol', 'The Chimes', 'The Battle of Life', 'The Cricket on the Hearth' and 'The Haunted Man') but also stories that Dickens wrote for the special seasonal editions of his periodicals

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  8. Shiver

    For years, Grace has watched the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf--her wolf--is a chilling presence she can't seem to live without. Meanwhile, Sam has lived two lives: In winter, the frozen woods, the protection of the pack, and the silent company of a fearless girl. In summer, a few precious months of being human . . . until the cold makes him shift back again. Now, Grace meets a yellow-eyed boy whose familiarity takes her breath away. It's her wolf. It has to be. But as winter nears, Sam must fight to stay human--or risk losing himself, and Grace, forever.

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  9. East of the Sun, West of the Moon

    From the moment she saw him, the girl knew the bear had come for her. How many times had she dreamed of him? Now, here he was, as if spelled from her dreams. This encounter marks the beginning of a long and extraordinary journey. At the bear’s secret palace in faraway mountains, she is treated courteously but troubled by the bear’s unfathomable sadness. As the bear's secret unravels, another adventure unfolds, which takes her to the homes of the four winds and beyond, to the castle east of the sun, west of the moon. 

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  10. Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow

    Blessed―or cursed―with an ability to understand animals, the Lass (as she's known to her family) has always been an oddball. And when an isbjorn (polar bear) seeks her out, and promises that her family will become rich if only the Lass will accompany him to his castle, she doesn't hesitate. But the bear is not what he seems, nor is his castle, which is made of ice and inhabited by a silent staff of servents. Only a grueling journey on the backs of the four winds will reveal the truth: the bear is really a prince who's been enchanted by a troll queen, and the Lass must come up with a way to free him before he's forced to marry a troll princess.

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  11. Ice

    When Cassie was little she thought her mother had been taken prisoner by trolls because of a deal she’d made with the Polar Bear King. Just a fairy tale to soothe a child whose mother had died. But on her eighteenth birthday, the “fairy tale” comes true when the Polar Bear King comes to take Cassie for his bride. Realizing she has the power to save her mother, Cassie makes her own deal with the bear and finds herself on a journey against time, traveling across the brutal Arctic to the land east of the sun and west of the moon. It is a journey that will teach Cassie the true meaning of love and family—and what it means to become an adult.

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  12. The Family Under the Bridge

    Armand, an old man living on the streets of Paris, relishes his solitary life in the beautiful city. He is happy with his carefree existence, begging and doing odd jobs to keep himself warm and fed. With simple pleasures and no cares, what more could he need?

    Then one day just before Christmas, Armand returns to his favorite spot beneath the bridge to find three cold and hungry children. Although he has no interest in children, Armand soon finds himself caring for the small family. It does not take Armand very long to realize that he must do whatever it takes to get them a real home. 

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  13. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

    Ralph, Imogene, Leroy, Claude, Ollie, and Gladys Herdman are an awful bunch. They set fire to Fred Shoemaker’s toolshed, blackmailed Wanda Pierce to get her charm bracelet, and smacked Alice Wendelken across the head. And that’s just the start!

    When the Herdmans show up at church for the free snacks and suddenly take over the Christmas pageant, the other kids are shocked. The takeover results in this hilarious yet heartwarming tale involving the Three Wise Men, a ham, scared shepherds, and six rowdy kids.

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  14. A Boy Called Christmas

    Eleven-year-old Nikolas–nicknamed "Christmas"–has received only one toy in his life: a doll carved out of a turnip. But he's happy with his turnip doll, because it came from his parents, who love him. Then one day his father goes missing, and Nikolas must travel to the North Pole to save him.


    Along the way, Nikolas befriends a surly reindeer, bests a troublesome troll, and discovers a hidden world of enchantment in the frozen village of Elfhelm. But the elves of Elfhelm have troubles of their own: Christmas spirit and goodwill are at an all-time low, and Nikolas may be the only person who can fix things-if only he can reach his father before it's too late. . . .

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  15. Letters From Father Christmas, Centenary Edition

    Every December, an envelope bearing a stamp from the North Pole would arrive for J.R.R. Tolkien’s children. Inside would be a letter in strange spidery handwriting and a beautiful colored drawing or some sketches. The letters were from Father Christmas.

    They told wonderful tales of life at the North Pole: how all the reindeer got loose and scattered presents all over the place; how the accident-prone Polar Bear climbed the North Pole and fell through the roof of Father Christmas’s house into the dining room; how he broke the Moon into four pieces and made the Man in it fall into the back garden; how there were wars with the troublesome horde of goblins who lived in the caves beneath the house!

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  16. A Treasury of Christmas Stories and Songs (Treasury to Share)

    A Treasury of Christmas Stories and Songs has Christmas favorites for the family! Bring everyone together to enjoy this collection of traditional tales, classic rhymes, and cherished songs and carols. Each one is beautifully illustrated to conjure up the wonder and the joy of Christmas.

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  17. The Way Past Winter

    Mila, her sisters, and her brother, Oskar, live in a small forest cabin, surviving in a world gripped by frost and snow.

    When a mysterious man shows up on her doorstep, Mila and her family grant him shelter for the night. But in the morning, the man is gone—and he's taken Oskar with them.

    Determined to save their brother, Mila and her sisters set out on a mission to rescue him. But challenges await them at every turn: wolves with the speed of demons, tempestuous gold, an untrustworthy mage—and always the relentless, stinging freeze of winter.

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  18. Otto Tattercoat and the Forest of Lost Things

    In the city of Hodorf, the Tattercoats live by a strict code. Only steal what you need, don't leave a trace of yourself behind, and if another Tattercoat is in trouble, you must always help them out. These are the rules that guide Nim's life as she and her rat, Nibbles, live on the streets and the rooftops of the only place she's ever called home. So when a new boy named Otto comes to town and gets caught up in the devious plottings of a former Tattercoat who's fallen from grace, Nim takes it upon herself to come to Otto's rescue.


    But Otto isn't the only one who needs help: The days in Hodorf have been growing progressively shorter and darker since the legendary sundragons went extinct. The air is getting colder, hope is waning, and it won't be long until the freeze grows so bone-deep that the chimneys the Tattercoats use for warmth at night will no longer suffice. With things growing more dire, Nim sets off into the murky woods surrounding the city, searching for Otto--and for answers.

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  19. Stone Fox (Harper Trophy Book)

    Based on a Rocky Mountain legend, Stone Fox tells the story of Little Willy, who lives with his grandfather in Wyoming. When Grandfather falls ill, he is no longer able to work the farm, which is in danger of foreclosure. Little Willy is determined to win the National Dogsled Race—the prize money would save the farm and his grandfather. But he isn't the only one who desperately wants to win. Willy and his brave dog Searchlight must face off against experienced racers, including a Native American man named Stone Fox, who has never lost a race.

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  20. A Winter’s Promise: Book One of The Mirror Visitor Quartet (The Mirror Visitor Quartet, 1)

    Plain-spoken, headstrong Ophelia cares little about appearances. Her ability to read the past of objects is unmatched in all of Anima and, what’s more, she possesses the ability to travel through mirrors, a skill passed down to her from previous generations. Her idyllic life is disrupted, however, when she is promised in marriage to Thorn, a taciturn and influential member of a distant clan. Ophelia must leave all she knows behind and follow her fiancé to Citaceleste, the capital of a cold, icy ark known as the Pole, where danger lurks around every corner and nobody can be trusted. There, in the presence of her inscrutable future husband, Ophelia slowly realizes that she is a pawn in a political game that will have far-reaching ramifications not only for her but for her entire world.


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  21. A Child's Christmas in Wales: Gift Edition

    This nostalgic recollection of Christmas past by celebrated Welsh poet Dylan Thomas evokes the beauty and tradition of the season at every turn: the warmth of a family gathering; the loveliness of a mistletoe-decked home; the predictability of cats by the fire; the mischief and fun of children left to their own devices; and the sheer delight of gifts--be they Useful or Useless.

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  22. The Tailor of Gloucester

    The Tailor of Gloucester was first published in 1903 and tells the story of a poor tailor trying to survive in his freezing workshop over a hard winter. He has a terribly important commission to complete for the Mayor of Gloucester's wedding on Christmas Day but is ill and tired, and before long is running out of food and thread, as well as time! How will he possibly complete the beautiful coat and embroidered waistcoat? 

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If you want to nurture a family reading habit, there’s no better time to start than with Christmas books! Be they about the true meaning of Christmas, hijinks aimed at saving Christmas, or the night before Christmas, I’m sure you will find something just perfect for you and yours this season!

We’ve celebrated Christmas with holiday themed reading for several years now and we all enjoy this special time together. From our family to yours –

Merry Christmas!!!!

pin this so you can come back each time you need a new book!

a collage of Christmas chapter books for the whole family