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8 Quality “Santa Free” Christmas Storybooks

8 Quality "Santa Free" Christmas Storybooks

This post contains affiliate links.

We are in the middle of our Christmas bedtime story tradition.  Reading a Christmas themed book every night before bed is a fun and easy way to get excited about the holiday.

We don’t completely avoid Santa themed books in our house, but I try my best to be sure he isn’t taking over the show.  My favorite books from our collection are ones that focus on Christ, giving, or family.  We want our children to look forward to Christmas for those reasons above all else.

Here are 8 of my favorite Christmas storybooks from our personal collection that are Santa Claus free:

1. A Christmas Prayer – by Amy Parker – A little girl says a prayer of thanks for all of the Christmas gifts God has given us; the star, angle, Mary, Joseph, etc.

As a parent: The final page of the book says, “God, I know that Christmas is more than toys or lists.  Thank You for loving me so much and for these Christmas gifts.”  Any book that ends with that message is a winner!

2. The Animals’ Christmas Eve by Gale Wiersum – Farm animals retell the story of Christmas including; the star, angles, wise men, shepherds, and of course the birth of Jesus.

As a parent: The Christmas story told from the perspective of barn animals is fairly common, but that is because it is such a good way for kids to hear the story!  I also really love the illustrations in this book.

3. Hurry!  Hurry!  Have You Heard? – by Laura Krauss Melmed – Instead of focusing on the barn animals, this book tells the story of Jesus’s birth being shared with animals across the countryside.  Each of these animals travels the distance to see the precious baby.

As a parent: This book is a nice twist on the typical barn animal themed Christmas book.  Plus all of the animals traveling to see the baby stresses the importance of Jesus.

4. Who is Coming To Our House? – by Joseph Slate – All of the animals in the barn scurry to clean and prepare for Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus.

As a parent: At the end of the book the animals respond in awe of Mary, Joseph, and Jesus.  It is a great demonstration of how important and special they all are.

5. The Sweetest Christmas – by Ann Braybrooks – Pooh has an awful time trying to find the perfect gift for his friends.  Finally he decides to sacrifice his most favorite thing of all, honey.

As a parent: Giving away the things we love most is a hard thing to do! It is a good lesson for little ones of all ages to hear.

6. The Littlest Christmas Star – by Brandi Dougherty – A little boy wants to have a big part in his school’s Christmas play.  He is disappointed when he only has one line, but he ends up learning that the star of Bethlehem is truly the star of the show after all.

As a parent: There are only so many ways that the Christmas story can be told.  I appreciate the twist that this author uses by telling a story about a Christmas play.

7. Mrs. Wishy-Washy’s Christmas – by Joy Cowley – This is a silly little book about a few farm animals that sneak into the house to use the tub instead of taking a cold bath outside.  They can’t stand the idea of getting their Christmas scrub outside in that cold water!

As a parent: The rhymes make this a fun book to read aloud.  I also appreciate the subtle Christmas story line.  It is nice to have a break to have a book that is just about silly animals.

8. Froggy’s Best Christmas – by Jonathan London – Froggy gets to experience his first Christmas when his friends wake him up from hibernation.  They decorate a tree, give gifts, and celebrate.

As a parent: The main focus of this book is on how much fun Christmas can be – especially when it it spent with our friends and family.  So true!

As my daughter is getting older, she is getting more and more excited about Santa Claus, but is very important to me that she knows what Christmas is truly about.  I believe reading books like this helps teach her that and perhaps they can help you in your home also. You can click on any of the images or titles above to find the books on Amazon, but you can probably get many of them for free at your library.

What are you favorite “Santa Free” Christmas storybooks?

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.  If you make a purchase after clicking on one of these links, I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.  Thank you for supporting Simply Rebekah!  Individual book images are provided by Amazon.


  1. We love The King’s Christmas List! Both of the kids love it too! It’s about a little girl that is invited to the King’s birthday party and she want’s to bring him the best gift… great story!

  2. I love setting out my Christmas books during December and – I have both adult and children’s books. My children books are: “My Merry Christmas” (and the real reason for Christmas joy), “The Shepherd’s Christmas Story”, “Away in a Manger” (Thomas Kinkade – it has his beautiful pictures in the book), “All Safe in the Stable”, “Jacob’s Gift” (It has a DVD with it), “Caleb Crosses the Country” (now why would I have one with this name?! – Caleb is the name of a camel), and “Benjamin’s Box”

  3. Wow – love this post and post idea! The “Who is coming to our house” is a favorite here. I haven’t heard of the others! I’ll have to look and share some awesome ones we have here.

  4. We have The Stable Where Jesus was Born by Rhonda Gowler Greene that I enjoy. It is a poem that shows the relationship between all the “characters” in the story. We also have The Something Wonderful by Karen Hill. It is similar to the one that you have too. The animals are getting ready for something but they don’t really know what it is. They are fun and have the true meanings in them 🙂 We are doing this too…but not with Dason 🙂

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