12 Days of Thrift-hearted Christmas: Day 11 – the Joy of Books

This beautiful pop-up book of the 12 Days of Christmas is exquisite

I have a fairly massive collection of Christmas books – mostly children’s books. I have a soft spot for the amazing illustrations that so many of these books have. Nearly all of them were purchased thrift, at used book stores or on incredible sales after Christmas.

Chapters often has great books in their sale/damaged book section. That’s where I got this incredible pop-up book on the 12 Days of Christmas for just $5.

6 geese a laying


9 ladies dancing and 10 lords a'leaping

This amazing copy of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is illustrated by Roberto Innocenti. I sometimes wish I could rip out the pictures and frame them; they are exquisite in their detail. This book was purchased at a used bookstore in Vancouver.

just look at the detail in this centre-fold illustration!

One of my very favourite Christmas books is the Mousehole Cat, by Antonia Barber, illustrated by Nicola Bayley. Again, it was the illustrations that sold me but the story truly won my heart. The whole story is told from the perspective of the cat and tells how she and her pet, Tom, save their village from starvation one cold, harsh Christmas. I dare you not to cry at the end.

even the text pages have beautiful, detailed illustrations

And yes, I have How the Grinch Stole Christmas in Latin. I got it for $4 at Save-On-Foods if you can believe that. No, it doesn’t rhyme.

postquam cibos per fumariolum deportandos curavit, ad ipsam arborem nataliciam surripiendam accessit: that lovely line about taking the tree and stuffing it up the chimney - that would be the fumariolum.

The problem with owning so many books is storage, of course, but I can’t help myself. How can you turn away something so lovely? This is why I’ll probably never go digital with books.

If you have limited space or income, then the library is your obvious choice for enjoying Christmas books. Even if you don’t have young children, visit that section of your local library and explore the beautiful books there. They’ll warm your heart.

What’s your favourite Christmas story?

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2 Responses to 12 Days of Thrift-hearted Christmas: Day 11 – the Joy of Books

  1. Denise says:

    I agree that there are many great books, some that you have listed here also live at my house (I am however jealous of the Grinch in Latin *sigh). A few years ago I discovered a book called ‘Humphrey’s First Christmas’, wonderful illustrations with a great story about a camel who is a tad annoyed at carrying the heavy boxes of gifts for a king….LOVE IT!! Also ‘The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey’ will always rank pretty high on my list. Thanks for sharing ♥

    • angelika says:

      yes, yes, yes – i also have the Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey – so great. the illustrations in that one are beautiful too. I”m going to have to check out Humphrey, i’ve never read that one!

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