• It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Winter: Our 7 Favorite Books to Cozy Up to this Holiday Season

    It’s getting to be that time of year again.  The weather is getting cooler; the nights are longer and peppermint flavored everything has officially replaced pumpkin-spiced madness at your local coffee shop.  This also means that winter vacation for your kids is just around the corner ushering in a host of boredom induced shenanigans, sure to drive any parent a bit batty during this busy time of year.

    Instead of succumbing to endless worry on how to keep your children occupied without plopping them in front of a television or mindless video games, may we suggest a good book?  With a selection from our handy list of winter and holiday classics, your child will be too enthralled to ask for their fifth piece of candy and Fluffy the cat will have peace of mind that last year’s food dye on fur experiments won’t be a yearly pastime.  So snuggle up by the fire and grab your peppermint cocoa, we’ve got a list of 7 spiritually and ethnically diverse favorite winter and holiday books ready to entertain children and adults alike. All are available for sale on our Aer.io site here and every purchase goes towards our charity give-back.


    1. The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg

    Celebrating 30 years of making true believers out of children and adults alike, the Polar Express is a classic story of childhood innocence and the magic of Christmas.  The detailed illustrations and calm, relaxing storyline has won numerous awards for best illustrated children’s book, making this classic a must-have addition to your winter reading shelf.


    2. The Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore

    Nothing says Christmas quite like the enchanting holiday poem about stockings hung with care and childhood visions of St. Nicholas.  The classic story gets a modern update with accompanying illustrations by award-winning artist, Tom Browning.  For an exotic twist, how about a version set in Africa and beautifully presented against the rich and vibrant backdrop of illustrations by Rachel Isadora.


    3. The Dreidel that Wouldn't Spin: A Toyshop Tale of Hanukkah by Martha Seif Simpson

    A beautiful dreidel that will only spin for a child who carried the true spirit of Hanukkah in his heart, The Dreidel that Wouldn’t Spin is a classic holiday tale.  An appendix explaining the traditions of Hanukkah and an explanation on how to play the dreidel game will keep your child, and you, learning and entertained for hours.


    4. The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats

    An award-winning tale of childhood delight over the first snowfall of the season sets the perfect backdrop for an engrossing read.  Younger readers will delight over the beautiful illustrations and even adults will appreciate the brilliant simplicity of storytelling that has kept this on the list of winter best sellers since its publication in 1963.


    5. Owl Moon by Jane Yolen, illustrated by John Schoenherr

    A father and daughter journey out one snowy night in search of the mysterious nocturnal owl, allowing readers to re-discover the joys of that special parental bond and the beauty of nature along the way.  The poetic story of winter is matched only by the beautiful water color illustrations and will leave both you and your child mesmerized and enchanted.


    6. Caravan by Lawrence McKay Jr., illustrated by Darryl Ligasan

    Readers will be transported to a far different winter wonderland in this snowy tale of a son’s first caravan journey with his father through the mountain passes of Afghanistan.  Rich drawings compliment the cultural details of the Kirghiz people provided by the author, making this an educational cultural book as well as a beautiful winter read.   


    7. Sky Sisters by Jan Bourdeau Waboose, illustrated by Brian Deines   

    Stunning oil on canvas illustrations create a tranquil backdrop to this heartwarming story of two Ojibway sisters as they set off across the frozen North Country together to watch the SkySpirits (Northern Lights).  The tale of sisterly love combines with Native American lore to create a powerful message, perfect for a quiet read with your own children.

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    Honorable Mentions

    Because having too many choices can’t be a bad thing, here’s a few more tales to warm your heart this season.

    Amadi's Snowman: A Story of Reading by Latia Novet Saint-Lot, illustrated by Dimetrea Tokunbo   

    A young Nigerian boy wanders off in a market only to happen across a storybook featuring a strange white creature with a carrot for a nose.  Winter magic combines with the joys of reading in this modern classic.

    The Story of the Snow Children by Sibylle von Olfers

    Beautiful art nouveau illustrations perfectly capture the spirit of this winter themed fairytale.  The imagination of a little girl transports her to a world where snowflakes are snow children and the Snow Queen rules over a winter wonderland.

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