The idea of reading books over Christmas might seem unfittingly antisocial, but perhaps that’s the point – especially if parties are cancelled anyway. Maybe you’re a particularly introverted bibliophile. Maybe you’ve exhausted our Christmas film list. Maybe you want an excuse to escape your support bubble. Whatever your situation, books may well be the solution. Besides, Christmas books can also serve to put you in what is commonly known as the ‘festive mood’. In turn, you’ll feel a resurgence of love towards your friends and family that simply cannot exist alongside any angst – it’ll be a Christmas miracle!
In need of a Christmas reading list? We recommend these:
Any respectable Christmas reading list would be incomplete without this novella by Charles Dickens – an utter classic and perhaps the ultimate tale of Christmas redemption.
A festive fairy tale that partly inspired Disney’s Frozen, Hans Christian Andersen’s The Snow Queen is pure escapism for your inner child.
Truman Capote didn’t only give us the masterful non-fiction novel In Cold Blood and the celebrated novella Breakfast at Tiffany’s. A Christmas Memory is a largely autobiographical short story that recounts his early experiences of Christmas with the utmost sweetness.
Any book that's as family-focussed as Louisa May Alcott's Little Women is bound to depict its fair share of festive goodwill.
We know that this is a children’s book, but it’s still as wonderful as when we first read it (or – to be precise – had it read to us). To be the first person to introduce younger relatives to it would be a privilege.
In both the real world and that of Agatha Christie, violent crime happens throughout the year. It’s fortunate, then, that Hercule Poirot did not request to have Christmas off at any point during Hercule Poirot’s Christmas.
If you’re bored of fiction, Maya Angelou’s collection of poetry might be a welcome alternative to your more typical Christmas books. She recited ‘Amazing Peace’ at the 2005 National Christmas Tree lighting event, having written it specifically for the occasion.
You’d be forgiven for forgetting that Less Than Zero – the debut novel by Brett Easton Ellis – is set during Christmas. But it is! And we love it.
Originally published in 1972, James Kirkwood’s novel isn’t necessarily the most wholesome piece of festive fiction. But with Nora Ephron describing it as ‘absolutely marvellous’, maybe that’s a good thing.
Nancy Mitford's novel tells the story of a Christmas spent in the Cotswolds during an outbreak of FMD. This is not a complete synopsis of the plot, so we guess you'll have to read it for yourself.