Did you have a happy Thanksgiving? My family and I certainly did. Good food, a movie marathon, a friend popped in… it was a grand ol’ time! Tell me about yours in the comments, if you like.
December is nearly upon us; can you believe it?! It’s so hard to imagine how quickly this year has flown by. Before the year is out, we’ve got one more reading challenge to go.
For this challenge, any book that has at least one Christmas scene works.
The reason I’ll leave this pretty wide open is because I can only read so many Christmas-themed books before I get burned out. I actually prefer books like Dear Mr. Knightley (by Katherine Reay) or A Season to Love (by Nicole Deese) that have one or two Christmas scenes but are otherwise not overtly holiday-oriented.
Yet, I have many friends on Goodreads who absolutely love Christmas books and read them throughout November and December. Nothing wrong with that approach. To each their own, and I’m happy for them. They may have the lion’s share of Christmas books this season.
For me, I’ll stick to small doses.
Please don’t misunderstand this.
I love Christmas.
I love that it’s the celebration of my Savior’s birth into the world, the beginning of His coming to save me and anyone willing to surrender to Him. I love that thinking on Him especially during this season creates a more giving and compassionate heart within me. I love that spreading God’s love with a friendly smile and a “Merry Christmas!” from the day after Thanksgiving all the way through Christmas (and sometimes a few days afterward) can make such a positive impact on people’s lives.
What drives me up a wall about Christmas books is the commercialism, the outpouring of sales tactics, and overly-sappy romances that tend to be presented along with the Christmas theme in and around these books. It seems to me like everyone and their goats are trying to make a few big bucks at the expense of a sacred event. Perhaps that isn't what's going on. Maybe I've misunderstood all the flashy graphics and "only ninety-nine cents!" gimmicks that create a monumental flurry of social media activity for "Christmas in July" and again leading up to Christmas (in December). For the most part, Christmas books remind me of all that, and that instantly makes me hesitate to read them.
Even though I've thoroughly enjoyed a few of them.
Mostly, those I've enjoyed I didn't actually read at Christmastime. I read Colors of Christmas this past summer. Where Treetops Glisten was read in a previous January. If I'm going to read a Christmas book and actually enjoy it, typically it won't be when I'm seeing an overload of holiday-themed ads on TV or all across the internet.
Other people may love piling up on Christmas stories during December. Maybe seeing all the ads and smiling faces and decorations and snow gets you in the mood to read cozy Christmas tales. Perhaps reading a dozen (or more) of them in a row doesn't make them all run together for you. If that's the case, please enjoy! I'm truly happy for you.
Whether you're one of those "It's Black Friday; bring on the Christmas books!" people or an "I'd rather wait till summer for this genre" person (like me), this is the reading challenge for you. The books may have a blatant, obvious Christmas theme, or they may have only one Christmas scene in the midst of a very not-Christmasy-at-all storyline.
We may disagree on our approaches to Christmas books.
But perhaps on this one thing we may agree:
Which Christmas books are you looking forward to reading this month?
What is your favorite Christmastime book?
What is your favorite Christmas movie?
(Mine’s a tie between White Christmas and It’s a Wonderful Life.)
Last call! November was all about Family Ties.