Friday, December 5, 2014

Carrie Turansky | Spread the Christmas Joy

Read Me a Christmas Story

One of my special Christmas memories is reading Christmas stories aloud to my five children. We’d get cozy on the couch and loveseat in the living room and choose a story from the basket. And even though they are all grown now and I have four grandchildren, I still bring down that basket of Christmas books to enjoy again each December. Reading aloud is such a wonderful way to bring family and friends closer and share a special experience together. Here are some of our favorite books in our Christmas book collection:


The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechoski

"Christmas is pish-posh," grumbles Jonathan Toomey, the best wood carver in the valley. He's a Scrooge-like recluse; but he is a gentle grouch, and it turns out that he hides a sad secret. And when an eager seven-year-old boy and his widowed mother ask him to make carve a Christmas crèche, the transformation begin. The spirit of Christmas heals a sorrowing woodcarver's heart in this splendid edition of a holiday classic. Lynch's beautiful illustrations, in shades of wood grain, are both realistic and gloriously romantic, focusing on faces and hands at work before the fire and in the lamplight. This is wonderful read-aloud story that even young children will enjoy. Amazon link.

Christmas on Jane Street by Billy Romp 
The warm, wonderful, real-life tale of the family that brings the Christmas spirit to life on a street corner in Manhattan. Every holiday season for nearly twenty years, Billy Romp, his wife, and their three children have spent nearly a month living in a tiny camper and selling Christmas trees on Jane Street in New York City. They arrive from Vermont the day after Thanksgiving and leave just in time to make it home for Christmas morning—and for a few weeks they transform a corner of the Big Apple into a Frank Capra-esque small town alive with heartwarming holiday spirit.

Christmas on Jane Street is about the transformative power of love—love of parent and child, of merchant and customer, of stranger and neighbor. The ideal Christmas story, it is about the lasting and profound difference that one person can make to a family and one family can make to a community. Amazon link. 

An Edwardian Christmas by John L. Goodall

This small book is a treasure! It is all illustrations with no text, but each page follows the story of a family visiting wealthy relatives in a large country house during Edwardian times. Depicted in loving detail, is Christmas as it was at the beginning of the twentieth century, indoors and out, above stairs and below, as seen through the eyes of a boy and girl. My favorite illustrations are of the family walking to church by starlight, and everyone gathered to play games on Christmas Day. It was first published in 1978, so you may want to look for a used copy online.

Peter Spires Christmas!

This is also a wordless picture book by the Caldecott Medal-winning artist of Noah's Ark, and it contains more than ninety full-color paintings capturing the spirit and joy of Christmas through the delights of three young children. My children all loved this when they were young, and it can be enjoyed by preschoolers through adults. First published in 1996, you will want to look for a used copy online.

Some of the other books in our collection include: 
Esther's Gift by Jan Karon
A Cup of Christmas Tea by Tom Hegg
The Christmas Cross by Max Lucado
A Little House Christmas by Laura Ingles Wilder
A Child's Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas
Mary's First Christmas by Walter Wagerin Jr.
Christmas at Long Pond by William T. George
The Crippled Lamb by Max Lucado
Christmas by Jan Pienkowski
Santa Are You For Real by Harold Myra
The Nutcracker, A Three Dimensional Story Book Illustrated by Michael Welply
The Christmas Stories of George MacDonald
Mele Kalikimaka ~ Christmas in Hawaii by Julie Mehta
The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg

Do you enjoy reading aloud? Can you add a favorite Christmas story to our list?

Leave a comment below for a chance to win one of these amazing novels! 

{Carrie is graciously giving a copy of each away!}

Book Blurb: “In The Daughter of Highland Hall, Carrie Turansky sweeps readers back into the early nineteen hundreds, to the glamour of London society as well as the desperate world of those struggling to survive in London’s East End. This beautiful story is filled with endearing characters who will steal your heart and surprises that will keep you engrossed until the very end.”
—Melanie Dobson, award-winning author of Chateau of Secrets and The Courier of Caswell Hall

Carrie Turansky is the award-winning author of more than a dozen novels and novellas including The Governess of Highland Hall, Surrendered Hearts, and Where Two Hearts Meet. She loves to travel for research and ministry trips with her husband Scott who is a pastor, author, and speaker. She enjoys connecting with reading friends on Facebook, Pinterest, and her website:

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