New Christmas Books – Buy or Borrow?

New Christmas Books – buy or borrow?  Today I am looking at two books that were pitched to me at BookExpo this year and one that was re-released.  Should you invest in these soon to be holiday classics or are they better checked out at the library because they may not have the staying power of say Jan Brett’s Christmas Treasury (which all Christmas celebrating homes should own!)?

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new Christmas books Dasher

Dasher by Matt Tavares

The illustrations in this book floored me.  They are gorgeous and as a parent, you will pull this one out of the pile immediately just to see the stunning artwork.  The story was not bad, but also not as timeless as the illustrations, which was a disappointment for me.  I liked that it focused on a “lesser reindeer” Dasher instead of the predictable Rudolph and the narrative of a reindeer finding freedom and valuing family had all the makings of a charming story.  But somehow it just never took off for me.  I would check this one out of library and then decide if the illustrations are enough to make it a keeper.

new Christmas books Great Santa Stakeout

The Great Santa Stakeout by Betsy Bird, illustrations by Dan Santat

Ok this is the dream team of author/illustrator.  Betsy Bird is a master librarian and her book reviews are as insightful as they are clever.  Dan Santat is a Caldecott winner whose artwork is charming in every way.  The story focuses on a boy who loves Santa and is determined to get a selfie with his hero.  All his steps are outlined in the story in case kids want to recreate the plans.  I wanted to love this, and it was cute, but purchase worthy?  Not quite.  Again I would check this one out of the library.  It’s a fun book but not quite one that will have staying power year after year.

new Christmas books Santa Mouse

Santa Mouse by Michael Brown

This one was re-released this year and it is as heartwarming today as it was in the 1960s when it was originally released.  I think I still have my original copy from when I was little.  A little mouse lives a lonely life in a big house but he loves Christmas.  He decides that perhaps Santa needs a present this year, and the rest, shall we say, is history.  Buy this one and enjoy reading it and passing it down.  You could check it out of the library, but you’ll end up buying it anyway so save yourself the trouble!