Holiday and Winter Fun Book Discussion

For December 2017, we will be reading Holiday/Winter Fun books
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hsimone
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Holiday and Winter Fun Book Discussion

Post by hsimone » 01 Dec 2017, 08:20

Happy December everyone! :occasion-snowman:

Since this is a very holiday-based time of year, we thought it would be fun to discuss both holiday-based books and books that share in winter fun!

Let's start our book discussion with some of these questions:
  • What book did you read?
  • Was it more winter-themed or holiday-based? How could you tell?
  • Did you enjoy it?
  • Would you recommend this read to others?
"Love is patient, love is kind." -1 Corinthians 13:4

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kandscreeley
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Post by kandscreeley » 01 Dec 2017, 09:30

This year, I've had the privilege of reading the Magi Charter series. This is a series all about the North Pole. The first book is The Elf Brief. It's not JUST a Christmas story, but it does encompass one of the big Christmas beliefs - Santa Claus. This is, so far, one of my favorite Holiday reads. I would definitely recommend the whole series to others.
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Post by Steph K » 01 Dec 2017, 12:57

I read a book recently that isn't holiday themed, but is very wintry. It was the Bear and the Nightingale, by Katherine Arden. It's set in a medieval fantasy Russia, and rooted in Russian folklore. Most of the story takes place during a very harsh winter. It's very atmospheric. All the descriptions of the cold and snow made me cold, even though it's unseasonably warm where I live. The main character even battles a frost demon. It was a great book for people who enjoy fantasy, and book two is coming out very soon.

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hsimone
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Post by hsimone » 05 Dec 2017, 04:08

kandscreeley wrote:
01 Dec 2017, 09:30
This year, I've had the privilege of reading the Magi Charter series. This is a series all about the North Pole. The first book is The Elf Brief. It's not JUST a Christmas story, but it does encompass one of the big Christmas beliefs - Santa Claus. This is, so far, one of my favorite Holiday reads. I would definitely recommend the whole series to others.
I've seen this series on the Volunteer Review section, but wasn't sure about them. I'm glad that you were able to enjoy these books!
"Love is patient, love is kind." -1 Corinthians 13:4

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hsimone
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Post by hsimone » 05 Dec 2017, 04:10

Steph K wrote:
01 Dec 2017, 12:57
I read a book recently that isn't holiday themed, but is very wintry. It was the Bear and the Nightingale, by Katherine Arden. It's set in a medieval fantasy Russia, and rooted in Russian folklore. Most of the story takes place during a very harsh winter. It's very atmospheric. All the descriptions of the cold and snow made me cold, even though it's unseasonably warm where I live. The main character even battles a frost demon. It was a great book for people who enjoy fantasy, and book two is coming out very soon.
What a great description of the book! I know there are other seasons in Russia, but I always seem to picture it as a winter wonderland anyway, lol. This one has caught my eye too, but I haven't had the chance to read/pick it up yet. I do love a good fantasy, so I'll have to keep this one in mind! Thank you. :)
"Love is patient, love is kind." -1 Corinthians 13:4

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hsimone
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Post by hsimone » 05 Dec 2017, 04:14

I actually just read a short children's picture book, My Snowman, Paul by Yossi Lapid. The author had another book as part of the Book of the Day program recently. The one I read happens to be free and so adorable!

It was definitely more winter-based more than holiday-related. It quickly follows a young boy who befriends a magical snowman he made. It's written in a rhyming pattern and the illustrations are simply adorable. I would definitely recommend it to children and to parents/teachers to read with children to read during this chilly time of year!
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Post by Lincolnshirelass » 05 Dec 2017, 06:12

I love 'classic' Christmas books like 'The Chimes' and 'The Gift of the Magi' (though a cynical part of me wonders how that story would have worked out if either partner HADN'T bought the relevant gift!) but am also a sucker for sentimental romance set round Christmas like Debbie Macomber's Christmas novels.
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hsimone
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Post by hsimone » 17 Dec 2017, 09:54

Aw...I should revisit The Gift of the Magi! It's been a while since I read it (maybe high school?), and I remember enjoying the book.

I was going through some of the freebie books I got from here that are Christmas-based. I recently read Rocky: The Rockefeller Christmas Tree by Jennie E. Nicassio. It's a children's picture book that talks about how Rocky, a tree, wants to be the next Rockefeller Christmas Tree in New York.

Unfortunately, I was disappointed with this read as it shows children sort of a wrong message - wish for something, perhaps a physical change? Once the physical change happens, then you will be known as the prettiest in order to be chosen and fulfill your dream. Spoilers - Rocky does a whole physical change by sure will and he is chosen. What? Why is this the message we want to share with children? Why couldn't Rocky be chosen because of confidence and not having his changed outward appearance be the determining factor?

Needless to say, I don't recommend reading this children unless the child is at an age where he/she won't be able to pick out this aspect of the story. Maybe a child less than two years old. Older than that, I would steer clear. There's already enough media to show that supposedly body image matters.

Oh well. I'm currently reading The Nutcracker and the Mouse King by E.T.A. Hoffmann, so I'm excited for this one!
"Love is patient, love is kind." -1 Corinthians 13:4

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Post by Lincolnshirelass » 18 Dec 2017, 05:23

I love ETA Hoffmann as well, though some, like the Sand Man, are pretty scary! I don't know the book you mention, @hsimone, but I take your point completely. Though I love the tales of Hans Christian Andersen, something about the 'Ugly Duckling' makes me uneasy.
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Post by Insightsintobooks729 » 18 Dec 2017, 12:48

I haven't read any holiday themed books, unless you count the one I read to my son called Bear at Christmas time. I also read him The Eighth Menorah.
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