Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.
This week’s topic is Holiday reads– Yay!!!
There are a few classic books I grew up with and cannot imagine this season without and a few recent releases.
- Julia Donaldson ‘Stickman’
Stick Man lives in the family tree with his wife and three children. One day he gets carried away by a dog and his adventures begin. You see everybody thinks he’s just a stick and sticks are there for fetching, dropping in water, weaving into a nest, being a sandcastle mast or a sword, a pen or a bat…until he almost gets burnt in a fireplace on the Christmas night. Luckily, his old friend Santa saves him and delivers him to his loyal family.
2 Nikolaj Gogol ‘The night before Christmas’ – I know it might be a bit obscure, but it’s a cute love story.
One snowy night a witch steals the stars and the Devil takes the moon, leaving the people of Dikanka village in pitch darkness. The Devil has orchestrated this because he is upset with the town blacksmith, Vakula, who paints religious pictures as a pastime. A beautiful but very vain girl, Oksana, is the focus of young men of the village. The witch is in league with the Devil to cause mischief in the lives of Vakula, her son, and Choub, Oksana’s father, because she wants to marry Choub and gain his wealth. The Devil wants to cause hate between Vakula and Choub so that Choub will beat Vakula who would then be unable to paint religious pictures.
3 The Gift of the Magi by O.Henry (William Sydney Porter).
One dollar and eight-seven cents is all the money Della has in the world to buy her beloved husband a Christmas present. She has nothing to sell except her only treasure — her long, beautiful brown hair. Set in New York at the turn of the twentieth century, this classic piece of American literature tells the story of a young couple and the sacrifices each must make to buy the other a gift. (From Goodreads)
4 The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula Le Guin
Genly Ai is an emissary from the human galaxy to Winter, a lost, stray world. His mission is to bring the planet back into the fold of an evolving galactic civilization, but to do so he must bridge the gulf between his own culture and prejudices and those that he encounters .
5 Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens- no Christmas list is complete without this one!
Published by Chapman & Hall on 19 December 1843, Christmas Carol tells the story of a bitter old miser named Ebenezer Scrooge and his transformation resulting from a supernatural visit by the ghost of his former business partner Jacob Marley and the Ghosts of Christmases Past, Present and Yet to Come. The book was written and published in early Victorian era Britain, a period when there was strong nostalgia for old Christmas traditions together with the introduction of new customs, such as Christmas trees and greeting cards.
6 Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
As a New England mother struggles to support her family in the wake of her husband’s service in the Civil War, her four daughters struggle, too – caught between childhood dreams and the realities of burgeoning adulthood. For Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy March, raised in integrity and virtue, negotiating the right path in life means making choices that will either narrow or expand their destinies.
You might also want to read this modern re-telling:
Meg and Jo by Virginia Kantra
The March sisters—reliable Meg, independent Jo, stylish Amy, and shy Beth—have grown up to pursue their separate dreams. When Jo followed her ambitions to New York City, she never thought her career in journalism would come crashing down, leaving her struggling to stay afloat in a gig economy as a prep cook and secret food blogger.
Meg appears to have the life she always planned—the handsome husband, the adorable toddlers, the house in a charming subdivision. But sometimes getting everything you’ve ever wanted isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
When their mother’s illness forces the sisters home to North Carolina for the holidays, they’ll rediscover what really matters.
One thing’s for sure—they’ll need the strength of family and the power of sisterhood to remake their lives and reimagine their dreams. (From Goodreads)
7 How The Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr.Seuss
For 53 years, the Grinch has lived in a cave on the side of a mountain, looming above the Whos in Whoville. The noisy holiday preparations and infernal singing of the happy little citizens below annoy him to no end. The Grinch decides this frivolous merriment must stop. His “wonderful, awful” idea is to don a Santa outfit, strap heavy antlers on his poor, quivering dog Max, construct a makeshift sleigh, head down to Whoville, and strip the chafingly cheerful Whos of their Yuletide glee once and for all. (From Goodreads)
8 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by C.S.Lewis
Four adventurers step through a wardrobe door and into the land of Narnia — a land enslaved by the power of the White Witch. But when almost all hope is lost, the return of the Great Lion, Aslan, signals a great change … and a great sacrifice. (From Goodreads)
And two more recent releases:
9 Christmas Angels by Nancy Naigle
Growing up, Liz Westmoreland dreamed of taking over her grandparents inn located in the small mountain town of Angels Creek only for it to be sold before she ever got the chance. While browsing the internet, she stumbles upon a listing for what looks to be the picturesque inn and it’s set to go to auction. Liz places a bid, and by a miracle, wins the auction. But when she gets there she finds the property in significant disrepair.
When Matt Hardy narrowly lost the inn and property that butted his land, he just hoped it wasn’t another city slicker coming to make matters worse after the previous owners gutted the place for an art gallery. But the minute he recognized the sweet, freckle-faced girl from his childhood and heard her plans to reopen the inn, he jumps at the chance to help his childhood crush restore a place where he made so many fond memories.
While working on repairs, Liz and Matt discover her grandmother’s collection of angels in one of the cabins. When the angels start mysteriously showing up all over the inn, she begins to look at them as reassurance—that restoring the inn is what she’s meant to do. But when an accident leaves Liz feeling like she made a mistake, will Matt—and the residents of Angels Creek—be able to show Liz that she’s found a home? And possibly true love as well? (From Goodreads)
10 Lavender & Mistletoe by Donna Kauffman
This Christmas, small-town Blue Hollow Falls will work big holiday magic for two people who have researched everything but love . . .
Avery Kent needs a project. The busy brain that earned her two PhDs before the age of eighteen is fascinated by the home she’s created with her three friends in Blue Hollow Falls, but the farm and the tearoom are running like clockwork now. As the holiday season approaches, it’s time for Avery to dive into one of her last uncharted research topics: love. Not for herself, of course; for her friend, Chey! But a closer look at the handsome young veterinarian Avery has chosen for this romantic equation has her wishing for gifts she never thought she wanted . . .
Another former child prodigy, Ben Chandler is more like Avery than she ever imagined. His intellect is a perfect match for hers—and everything else about him attracts her in ways that send delicious tingles down her spine. But a relationship? That’s something Avery will need to analyze—unless her friends can help Ben convince her that romance is more magic than science, and that a good old-fashioned kiss under the mistletoe is the perfect way to open her heart to the possibility of the greatest gift of all . . . (From Goodreads)
What?!? That’s already ten? I could go on and on… What’s on your TTT Holiday reads?