22 Children’s Christmas Books for 2022

I look forward to my festive post each year, and this time I am sharing 22 Christmas books for 2022. It includes 14 new children’s books out this year and some of our family favourites published in recent years.

A Family Christmas by Alana Washington and Emily Nash

I want to start off this post with a heart-warming rhyming picture book that celebrates all the wonderful things about sharing Christmas Day with your family.

I love that this book shows a multi-cultural family, including the extended family of cousins and grandparents. Alana and Emily have been sensitive in their depiction of the family, trying to help as many children as possible see themselves reflected within its pages. A Family Christmas is a lovely picture book that leaves you with that warm Christmassy feel.

Published by UCLan Publishing, 27 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-1912979950

The BIG Christmas Bake by Fiona Barker and Pippa Curnick

My three-year-old sings the 12 days of Christmas all year round and so I was so excited to discover that Fiona had written a cake version! Illustrated by Pippa, The Big Christmas Bake is a funny, lively romp through the twelve days of Christmas, taking the elements of the popular carol, and weaving them cleverly into the ingredients for a Twelfth Night Cake.

Starting with the partridge and its gift of dried fruit, this rhyming story includes all of the familiar characters from the song as they all contribute to the baking of the magnificent Twelfth Night cake including five huge gold rings of candied orange peel and ten froggy lords. At the end of the story, is the original carol as well as a recipe to bake your own twelfth night cake at home and start a new tradition to a family. This is an absolute must-buy to be read each Christmas. It is one of my top picks for 2022!

Published by Happy Yak, 4 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-0711268128

The Very Hungry Caterpillar’s Christmas Eve by Eric Carle

I had to include this lift-the-flap Christmassy board book spin-off of the classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar. My girls have asked to read this every bedtime in December.

Set on a silent, snowy Christmas Eve, the Very Hungry Caterpillar is hoping for a very special visitor. Children can lift the flaps to discover who’s at home – a cat, a dog and a mouse and maybe someone else too… The Very Hungry Caterpillar’s Christmas Eve is a lovely gift for toddlers.

Published by Puffin, 3 October 2019

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ISBN: 978-0241350249

The Christmas Department Store by Maudie Powell-Tuck and Hoang Giang

Christmas time for Benji has lost its magic because his family can’t afford a tree, or even a turkey. But then he stumbles upon the most extraordinary department store, where polar bears talk and the presents are out of this world. But maybe the real magic of Christmas is waiting for him at home…

The cost-of-living crisis will be impacting many families this Christmas and I was so pleased to discover this magical Christmas tale. It celebrates the joy of giving and the importance of love and family at Christmas. The Christmas Department Store is beautifully illustrated and holds a powerful message that is more important than ever this year.

Published by Little Tiger Press, 13 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-1801040129

The Night Before Christmas in Wonderland by Carys Bexington and Kate Hindley

When St Nick receives a very late letter from the Princess of Hearts, he gets Rudolph to set a course to Wonderland. Though Dancer and Prancer warn him about Alice and the smiley cat, they set off without delay (“It’s a quick trip by rabbit hole, AGES by sleigh”). St Nick and his reindeer soon discover that the Princess is now Queen and she HATES Christmas. Is there anything that can convince the Queen that the true meaning of Christmas is to be kind?

Kate’s illustrations in this book are spectacular and combined with Carys’ wonderful words. The Night Before Christmas in Wonderland is a fabulous modern mash-up of The Night Before Christmas and Alice in Wonderland. Not a single detail has been overlooked and all the iconic moments of both, from the names of the reindeer to Rabbit being late, make this book a pure delight to read. I cannot praise this book highly enough.

Published by Macmillan, 3 October 2019

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Father Christmas and the Three Bears by Lou Peacock and Margarita Kukhtina

It’s Christmas Eve and Father Christmas has fallen asleep at the Three Bears’ cottage but NOTHING will wake him. It’s up to Baby Bear and the Fairy-Tale Rescue Rangers to deliver the last presents so EVERY child gets a gift. But how will they cross the Roaring Rushing River, navigate the Deepest Darkest Wood and get past the Most Monstrous Mountain before the children wake up on Christmas morning?

If you read my blog regularly, you’ll know I am a huge fan of twisted fairy tales. Well, Father Christmas and the Three Bears blew us away! This fun, festive tale combines all your fairy tale favourites in a brand-new adventure the whole family will love. This is one of my top picks for 2022!

Published by Nosy Crow Ltd, 6 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-1839945700

The Grumpus by Alex T. Smith

Alex’s Christmas books have become firm favourites in our home, and so I was over the moon to discover his latest festive Christmas adventure about a very grumpy character. Inspired by The Krampus and with a hint of The Grinch, The Grumpus is a heartwarming story that celebrates the true meaning of Christmas.

As always, Alex’s illustrations are fantastic and my children loved reading this together as a family. I don’t know how he does it, but Alex’s Christmas books have that classic feel about them. This will be a story we will come back to year-after-year each Christmas.

Published by Macmillan, 29 September 2022

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ISBN: 978-1529041613

Santa Post by Emma Yarlett

It’s almost Christmas, when Santa receives Amy’s letter. She is on the “good list” and he wants to give her the perfect present, except… the letter has a piece missing where she wrote what she wants! Santa enlists all of his friends to help come up with the right gift for Amy but their ideas are questionable. Surely Amy doesn’t want coal?? Will Santa be able to come up with the perfect gift?

The Jolly Christmas Postman was my favourite Christmas book as a child and I couldn’t wait to read Santa Post with my daughters. My daughters loved lifting the flaps of all the letters and parcels. Emma’s illustrations are so detailed and the letters are filled with humour. We absolutely loved the ending!

Published by Walker Books, 5 November 2020

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ISBN: 978-1406392197

The Woodcutter and The Snow Prince by Ian Eagleton and Davide Ortu

Representation is important all year around, and I was delighted to discover Ian had written a re-imagined, inclusive festive fairy tale.

Every Christmas Eve, a lonely woodcutter named Kai carves statues for anyone who might pass by. But one magical night his loneliness is soothed by a visit from the snow prince. Feared by many, Kai sees hope in the prince’s eyes, but as the prince freezes once more, imprisoned in his ice-palace, can Kai break the curse? The Woodcutter and The Snow Prince is a stunning illustrated, beautiful story to share with the whole family.

Published by Owlet Press, 3 November 2022

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ISBN: 978-1913339494

The Night Before the Night Before Christmas by Kes Gray & Claire Powell (Hachette)

If you’re looking for a glitzy, jolly, rhyming, festive read that will have you grinning from ear to ear as you watch Santa preparing for Christmas – look no further! This book has it all. And oh my goodness, it is so beautiful. Claire’s illustrations feel like a warm festive hug and I LOVE Mrs Santa. Santa is rushing around, but he’s sure he’s forgotten something. Will he remember in time?

My daughters gasped when they saw the huge sack of presents and delighted telling me about how they go in Santa’s polished sleigh. You won’t find a more Christmassy book!

Published by Hodder, 4 October 2018

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ISBN: 978-1444939231

The Night After Christmas by Kes Gray & Claire Powell

There is only one thing that makes The Night Before the Night Before Christmas even better and that’s the fact there is a sequel for Boxing Day. So, the presents have been delivered and Christmas is over. But the party is only just beginning for Santa and his elves! And believe me, it’s a party like you’ve never seen before, including with a GIANT cracker full of sweets!

I think I actually love The Night After Christmas even more than The Night Before the Night Before Christmas. There is a beautiful harmony between the two books. In the first, I loved watching Santa looking out at the stars, and in the sequel we see the same scene with the light show. For me, these two books are the perfect Christmas package, one to read during advent, and the other to read after Christmas. Now the fun never has to end!

Published by Hodder, 15 October 2020

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ISBN: 978-1444954661

What the Ladybird Heard at Christmas by Julia Donaldson and Lydia Monks

This latest instalment in one of my five-year-old’s favourite picture book series did not disappoint. Packed full of fun, What the Ladybird Heard at Christmas is a fantastically lively rhyming adventure from the bestselling picture book partnership of Julia Donaldson and Lydia Monks.

Ladybird is visiting her friend Spider for the festive season. But Hefty Hugh and Lanky Len, are up to no good again and are planning to steal the children’s Christmas presents from their stockings! Thankfully the clever little ladybird has overheard their awful plotting. Can she and the others save Christmas? What the Ladybird Heard at Christmas is a fabulous, festive picture book children will love this Christmas!

Published by Macmillan Children’s Books, 13 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-1529087055

Kid Christmas: of the Claus Brothers Toy Shop by David Litchfield

David is one of our favourite storytellers and I was so excited to read his Christmas tale of little Nicky Claus, his version of the Father Christmas origin legend. As always, David’s illustrations are spectacular and the story left us with a warm fuzzy festive glow.

Little Nicky Claus works with his three uncles in the Claus Brothers Toy Emporium. Each toy is made with a special sparkle that means it will find the child it is perfect for. But one day, Nicky discovers a young girl living on the streets who can’t afford a toy. Nicky vows to make every child happy, at least for one night… Kid Christmas is a truly magical and heart-warming story about the importance of kindness, generosity and looking after each other. We loved it!

Published by Quarto, 4 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-0711262935

Meerkat Christmas by Emily Gravett
Sunny the meerkat has got his Christmas check list at the ready but Christmas at home in the Kalahari desert is just not up to the mark, so Sunny travels the globe in search of the perfect Christmas. He writes back to his family with updates at every location he tries, but nowhere seems quite right. Can Sunny work out where the perfect Christmas is before it’s too late?

My daughters love reading this book every year. What I particularly like about this book, is that it explores all the different ways to celebrate Christmas around the globe. It reminds us that no matter where you are, and how you celebrate the day, it’s being with the people you love that makes it so special.

Published by Macmillan, 17 October 2019

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We Disagree About This Tree by Ross Collins

My daughters love this series and I was so excited to discover a festive story about Bear and Mouse who ALWAYS disagree about everything! This time it’s over the Christmas tree…

Bear wants dazzling lights, while mouse prefers gigantic baubles, and, wait a minute, did mouse just put a manatee on the top?! A topsy-turvy tree is definitely the last straw, and it looks as if Christmas is ruined. But maybe, just maybe, bear and mouse can reach a compromise in time? We disagree about this tree had us all laughing out loud and is a great addition to our Christmas book collection.

Published by Nosy Crow Ltd, 6 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-1839944994

Crazy Stickers: Christmas Fun by Danielle McLean and Julie Clough

What could get you more in the Christmas mindset than transforming everyday objects into festive Christmas friends?

There are over 300 stickers for children to use to create their own Christmassy characters. I enjoyed making a few myself! My daughters adore this series of activity books, and it would make a perfect stocking filler.

Published by Little Tiger Press, 13 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-1801043267

Colour with Stickers Christmas by Jonny Marx

Another Festive activity book we’ve loved this year has been created by Jonny Marx. It features ten Christmas scenes for children to create and decorate with stickers!

Both my three- and five- year-old loved matching the numbered stickers to each picture to create their own festive scene. There are also fun facts on each page so children can learn all different Christmas traditions. This small but mighty festive activity book provided hours of entertainment!

Published by Caterpillar Books, 13 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-1838914332

A Christmas Carol, illustrated by Jean Claude

This board book version of Charles Dicken’s A Christmas Carol has been a staple Christmas book in our home for a few years now. The clever push, pull and turn mechanisms really bring the story of Scrooge to life, making it perfect for toddlers.

Jean’s illustrations are bright and joyful and fit Charles Dicken’s entire A Christmas Carol into just five spreads. The push, pull and turn mechanisms really add to the story telling and will have little ones entertained for (maybe not hours but…) a long time!

Published by Campbell Books, Macmillan, 3 October 2019

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I Love You More Than Christmas by Ellie Hattie and Tim Warnes

Little Bear LOVES Christmas. So do Mummy Bear and Daddy Bear. It’s so magical. It’s so heartwarming. It’s so wonderful! Could there be anything in the world that they all love more?

My girls loved this adorable board book. This is the perfect gift for toddlers and a special book to read together in the run up to Christmas.

Published by Little Tiger Press, 13 October 2022

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ISBN: 978-1801043274

Santa Jaws by Mark Sperring & Sophie Corrigan

A sneaky shark named Shelly dresses up as Santa on Christmas Eve, inviting fishy folk into her “grotto”. Now, most of the savvy fishes don’t fall for her trap. But a squid called Sid is thrilled by the idea of meeting Santa. When Sid goes into the dark, dark grotto, and spots some big, sharp teeth, will Sid realise what’s going on in time?

Santa Jaws is a brilliant, original Christmas picture book and I must admit, I didn’t see the final twist coming! Mark’s rhymes are lovely and roll off the tongue. Sophie’s illustrations are charming and we love coral town! Santa Jaws is fins down, one of our all-time favourite Christmas books!

Published by Bloomsbury, 15 October 2020

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ISBN: 978-1408897829

Little Elf’s Christmas Surprise by Helen Baugh and Nick East

This brilliant duo are back with another great seasonal picture book. This time we meet Little Elf who accidentally slips and drops a letter sent to Santa. Little Elf gives chase but can he catch the letter, and if he does, has Santa got time to grant the child’s Christmas wish?

This series always has a catchy refrain that children will want to read along to. I really loved the message of this book of sharing and putting others first. This is a lovely book for the family to enjoy together over the festive season.

Published by HarperCollins, 10 November 2022

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ISBN: 978-0007542864

Oh, Christmas Tree! by Sue Hendra and Paul Linnet

Last but definitely not least, is Oh, Christmas Tree. This isn’t just one of our favourite Christmas books, it’s one of our favourite picture books of all time!

Through the window of every house on Sidney Street, you can see the perfect Christmas scene – except for one. Inside one house is a rather rebellious tree that can imagine nothing worse than wearing glittery decorations, stuck in a pot. Tree wants adventure and excitement this Christmas. But Bauble, Belle and Tinsel Snake are in no mood for Tree’s antics and will stop at nothing to have the perfect tree this Christmas. But can they learn to love Tree for who it is? This book is a Christmas rhyming delight! It has the perfect balance between sparkly, seasonal fun and a message of gold: be true to who you are. The ending will have the whole family in hysterics! Oh, Christmas Tree! is a great addition to any Christmas picture book collection.

Published by Macmillan, 3 October 2019

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Happy Christmas everyone, I hope you all have a lovely festive season!

I am very grateful to the publishers for providing me with complimentary copies of these books. This voluntary feature contains my honest opinion.

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