1. The Christmas Books by Charles Dickens
The only reason to shout “Bah! Humbug!” at this collection is when you’re trying to decide which book to read first! The entire first edition set of Charles Dickens’ Christmas Books include A Christmas Carol (first issue), The Chimes, The Battle of Life, Cricket on the Hearth, and The Haunted Man and the Ghost’s Bargain. Generally considered the “Bible of Christmas,” A Christmas Carol tells the heartwarming story of bitter, penny-pinching Scrooge as he travels through time with the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Yet to Come, renewing his faith in the spirit of the holiday along the way. These famous novellas by Dickens make for a fantastic celebration of both the English language and the holiday season.
2. How The Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
Another non-believer redeemed in the end, the Grinch is easily the best Christmas villain since Scrooge. Surprisingly, Theodore Seuss Geisel revealed that he wrote the book because he identified with its main character:
I was brushing my teeth on the morning of the 26th of last December [said Seuss] when I noted a very Grinch-ish countenance in the mirror. It was Seuss! So I wrote a story about my sour friend, the Grinch, to see if I could rediscover something about Christmas that obviously I’d lost.
Who would have thought that the lively Dr. Seuss could be considered a Grinch? But we suppose all authors relate to their characters somehow. Choose a holiday book the whole family will treasure with the very rare first edition of How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
3. A Charlie Brown Christmas by Charles M. Schulz
The best holiday books are those that we grew up reading, such is A Charlie Brown Christmas by Charles M. Schulz. Similar to the anti-Christmas villains in the previously mentioned books, the story starts out with Charlie Brown in a not-so-joyful mood. Of course, we all relate to the holiday blues that Charlie feels in lieu of the over-commercialization of Christmas, and find our hearts warmed as the young boy’s friends come together to revive his little tree in the end. Signed by Charles Schulz, this very special first edition of A Charlie Brown Christmas is easily a top 5 pick for rare holiday books.
4. Poems by Clement C. Moore
‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all thro’ the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
In the beautifully bound first edition of Poems by Clement C. Moore lies the famous holiday poem, “’Twas the Night Before Christmas.” This rare book was the first appearance of Moore’s poem, which was originally titled, “A Visit from St. Nicholas.” The author originally wrote the poem in 1822 for his children, after a snowy winter’s day during which he went sleigh shopping. Moore did not claim authorship of the poem for over 20 years, and instead published it anonymously. Moore’s reason for this was that he was a professor and intellectual, and did not want the unscholarly poem attached to his name. Today, the famous poem is what Clement C. Moore is most remembered by, and it serves as a holiday classic for children and poetry lovers across the world.
5. A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas
One of the most popular works of acclaimed poet, Dylan Thomas, A Child’s Christmas in Wales evokes all of the emotional nostalgia many of us feel about experiencing Christmas as a child. The prose was originally written for BBC radio and recorded by Thomas in the early 1950s. Within the verses, Thomas describes a simpler time when the snow of the holidays seemed much brighter and more exciting. The story has since been adapted into theatrical, film, and animated versions. Inspiring laughter and idyllic memories of Christmas by all who know it, the first edition of book is a wonderful fit for our list of top 5 rare holiday books.