20 Books to Celebrate the Holiday Season

Tis the season to be jolly—and thankful and caring and together. Those qualities, and of course the glorious Christmas music, cause us to look forward to the holiday season with blissful anticipation. For many African Americans, this time of the year include celebrations not only for Christmas but Kwanzaa as well, observing religious beliefs and honoring culture. But even if you commemorate one and not the other, family, friendship, sharing, and community are characteristics of both holidays and the themes of the books selected. Parents and educators often look for holiday books with Black characters that contain universal themes but are also culturally relevant and authentic. The titles included are picture and middle grade reads. Check our “Genres, Themes, and…” page for more holiday titles. Happy Holidays!

Everett Anderson’s Christmas Coming - Lucille Clifton

Everett Anderson’s Christmas Coming - Lucille Clifton

Christmas Soup - Alice Faye Duncan

Christmas Soup - Alice Faye Duncan

Under the Christmas Tree - Nikki Grimes

Under the Christmas Tree - Nikki Grimes

An Island Christmas - Lynn Joseph

An Island Christmas - Lynn Joseph

Poppa's Itchy Christmas - Angela Shelf Medearis

Poppa's Itchy Christmas - Angela Shelf Medearis

Christmas Makes Me Think - Tony Medina

Christmas Makes Me Think - Tony Medina

Baby Jesus Like My Brother - Margery W. Brown

Baby Jesus Like My Brother - Margery W. Brown

Shanté Keys and the New Year’s Peas - Gail Piernas-Davenport

Shanté Keys and the New Year’s Peas - Gail Piernas-Davenport

A Joyful Christmas: A Treasury of New and Classic Songs, Poems, and Stories for the Holiday - James E. Ransome

A Joyful Christmas: A Treasury of New and Classic Songs, Poems, and Stories for the Holiday - James E. Ransome

Li’l Rabbit’s Kwanzaa - Donna L. Washington

Li’l Rabbit’s Kwanzaa - Donna L. Washington

My First Kwanzaa Book - Deborah M. Newton Chocolate

My First Kwanzaa Book - Deborah M. Newton Chocolate

Together for Kwanzaa - Juwanda Ford

Together for Kwanzaa - Juwanda Ford

Hold Christmas in Your Heart - Cheryl Willis Hudson

Hold Christmas in Your Heart - Cheryl Willis Hudson

The Gifts of Kwanzaa - Synthia Saint James

The Gifts of Kwanzaa - Synthia Saint James

An African Christmas - Ifeoma Onyefulu

An African Christmas - Ifeoma Onyefulu

Snowflake Kisses and Gingerbread Smiles - Toni Trent Parker

Snowflake Kisses and Gingerbread Smiles - Toni Trent Parker

Grandma’s Gift - Eric Velasquez

Grandma’s Gift - Eric Velasquez

Too Many Holidays? - Angela Shelf Medearis

Too Many Holidays? - Angela Shelf Medearis

Addy’s Surprise: A Christmas Story (An American Girl) - Connie Rose Porter

Addy’s Surprise: A Christmas Story (An American Girl) - Connie Rose Porter

Christmas in the Big House, Christmas in the Quarters

Christmas in the Big House, Christmas in the Quarters

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