I found this festive Chrsitmas tag on Here Be Dragons and thought it might be fun to do.  This tag is all about the most well known aspects of Christmas and can I pair a book to them?  Well it was fun to see what I could come up with and I hope you enjoy my answers below.  If you want to do this tag then just go ahead, but do please let me know where you’ve posted, and tag me too so we can compare answers, or just let me know what you would answer to these questions in the comments box below. 🙂

Father Christmas: Name a book you received as a child and treasure to this day

There are quite a few books I really teasure from my childhood.  One of them is the Brambly Hedge collection by Jill Barklem featuring all four of the season stories: Spring Story, Summer Story, Autumn Story, Winter Story.  Another is a small Beatrix Potter collection of books.  I still have them, still look at them, and…they still look like new! 😮

The Ghost of Christmas Past: is there a book or series you like to revisit each year at Christmas time?

Though sometimes it’s through television or films, I do like to think of, read or watch different versions of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens every year! 🙂  There’s just something so special about the story, it just never gets old for me no matter how many adaptations and versions there are made/written.

Christmas Tree: name a series that reaches new heights with every entry.

I haven’t read that many book series, instead I’ve mainly only ever read standalones, but I guess I’d say one children’s book series which I absolutely love is the Julius Zebra books by Gary Northfield.     I don’t know if there’s going to be any more sequels (even though there was a hint of one in the ending of the last book) but this series never failed to make me laugh and with every continuing book adding to the group of talking animals’ silly misfit adventures around ancient Europe (Rome, Briton, Egypt, Greece, etc.) it really was so funny.  I especially loved it when Julius’s brother finally joins the group, and of course the countless times I’ve seen the words ‘holibobs’ and ‘cor’ in the book, which for some reason cracks me up! 🤪😂

Friends and Family: name a book with fantastic characters.

I do love the diversity of characters found in The Crystal Palace Chronicles: Star of Nimrod by Graham Whitlock.  When Joe travels back in time to the Crystal Palace of the 1800s he encounters a young H.G Wells (called Bertie), Arthur Conan Doyle, Blondin and many others.  Each of the characters is so unique both in their actions and the way they speak that it really felt like a brilliant set of vibrant individuals.  The adventure is also so good and is just a brilliant time-travelling story.

Decorations: name a book with a gorgeous cover you would proudly display on your shelves.

There are lots of covers I absolutely adore.  I usually prefer fantasy covers though with lots of details, and bonuses for any shiny foil bits!  But I also love some very bold designs with interesting bright colours and patterning like the cover for Cecily by Annie Garthwaite.  Here it is, just look at the lovely colours and how bold it looks!  (Also I’m suddenly reminded that I don’t think I’ve posted the review for Cecily yet – I know it’s soooo late, but I’m catching up over the Christmas break – hopefully😬).

Cecily book cover
Cecily book cover

Christmas Cards: name a book that carries a great message.

Earthlings: The Beginning by Ray Star is a great book that shows the state of our planet today.  Set in a sort of fantasy future where animals can talk in a world which has been treated badly by humans this book really does have a great mesage about the way humanity treats the planet and animals.  It doesn’t ram the message down your throat, but slowly shows you the way the world now is after all that’s happened, and why.  I just love the interesting twist on what has happened to all the animals and people, I can’t give it away but it’s brilliant!

Ice and Snow: name a book that you were hoping to love but which ultimately left you feeling cold.

The Forevers by Chris Whitaker.  I don’t know why but something about this book was just off for me.  The idea of the story was brilliant, the world is coming to an end within a month and lots of things happening with the teens in the build up to that, but despite the high praise the author gets for his adult thrillers, I just felt like this was missing something and it made it harder to read and harder to want to pick up than maybe it was for other people.  A shame as I really like the end-of-the-world/dystopian vibes in books.

Christmas Lunch: name a book that was big and intimidating but oh so worth it in the end.

A Clockwork River by J S Emery, the world’s first hydropunk novel, was quite the challenging read at 726 pages!  But I really enjoyed every moment of the interesting and slightly madcap adventure of Samuel Locke and his sister Briony, and others.  It’s such a long tale with so much happening so I think it’s better if you just click the link in the title to find out more about it rather than me explaining here.  But oh, was it good and I feel pretty proud of myself for reading it, especially as I’ve spent much of my life as a reluctant reader.

Mince Pies: name a book you found sweet and satisfying.

Baby It’s Cold Outside by Emily Bell was just the perfect winter/Christmas read.  Norah finds herself alone for Christmas after her mum backs out of their plans to spend the day together.  With nobody else to spend it with and memories of an old love resurfacing, Norah decides to travel to Dublin to meet the man she was in love with years ago, after the two decided that if life got in the way they’d meet under a certain clock at a certain cafe this Christmas Eve.  I just love how this story goes.  It flowed so well and the way it ends for Norah and the other characters is just perfect!

Presents: what book do you wish you could give everyone to read?

I’m always a bit stumped with answering this question because I know that different people like different books and not everybody will like or even understand the book I might recommend.  But from the books I’ve read this year I might suggest one of my favourites which is The Plague Letters by V. L. Valentine.  It’s just a brilliant historical mystery with quite a lot of humour thrown in and some very funny eccentric characters.  It’s just a brilliant story and I’ve wanted to re-read it the second I put it down, it is that good! 😀

 

So I hope you lliked my answers and will want to do the tag, or at least answer some of the questions yourself.  I will be posting two more Christmas book reviews for Christmas Eve (so either a double post tomorrow or one on Christms Eve and one for Christmas Day – I haven’t decided yet).  I hope you’ll enjoy those while I take some time off for the holiday.  In case I don’t get to say it in a seperate post later…Have a very Happy Christmas everyone!🎄 🙂


What do you think of this tag?  What would your answers be to the questions above?  Let me know what you think in the comments below 🙂