It’s that time of year again. Christmas books abound, but what about books from the past? Consider giving a book that cannot be found on the high street or in a supermarket, and has nothing to do with a reality TV show. This selection of vintage Christmas books stretches from 1928 to 1984, includes a carol and some poetry, and combines Dylan Thomas and Charlie Brown on the same list.
Silent Night: The Story of a Song by Hertha Pauli
Published in 1943, this story also includes the Christmas carol and numerous beautiful illustrations. Prices from £12.
Nutcracker by E.T.A. Hoffmann
Printed in 1984 and signed by illustrator Maurice Sendak. Hoffmann’s famous story of toys on Christmas Eve was written in 1816. Prices from £79.
The Night Before Christmas by Clement Clarke Moore
Signed by illustrator Tasha Tudor. The author of this poem has never been clearly identified but Clement Clarke Moore is commonly listed as the poet. Prices from 79 pounds.
Village Christmas by Miss Read
Published in 1966, this forgotten novel focuses on a birth at Christmas in this portrayal of village life. Prices from £8.
A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas
Published in 1954, first editions of this Christmas classic start at £46. The book was published after the poet’s death.
A Charlie Brown Christmas by Charles M. Schulz
Charlie Brown searches for the true meaning of Christmas in this book from 1965 that has become quite rare. Prices from £9.
London Snow: A Christmas Story by Paul Theroux
A 1979 edition signed by Theroux and illustrator John Lawrence. Only 450 copies were printed. Prices from £24.
Alias Santa Claus by Percival Wilde
A very rare play for children from 1928. Prices from £31.
The Christmas Book by Enid Blyton
Pre-1950 copies can be found for as little as £20. Stories from Blyton and others. A memorable dust jacket by Treyer Evans
Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm and Other Stories by Stella Gibbons
A collection of 16 short stories first published in magazines. Published in 1940. Very rare now. Prices from £875.