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Hello Hello! How are you?

Today’s post is going to be a little mash-up of three mini-reviews where I’ll be talking about my thoughts on the Christmas books I read with Noly from The Artsy Reader for the Hype-A-Thon Readathon that we co-host!

In December, we were able to finish all three of the books on our Hype-A-Thon TBR and #MerryDecember theme. We were so happy about it. We read A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. Seuss and Letters From Father Christmas by J.R.R. Tolkien. Keep reading to find out my thoughts on each of these books!

I’m only going to be doing a mini-review of each of these books, and without an ASPECTS rating as they are just too short!

How The Grinch Stole Christmas!

Title: How the Grinch Stole Christmas!       

Author: Dr. Seuss

Published: First published in 1957 – 6th of October 2016 – by Harper Collins UK

Format: Hardcover – 64 pages

“Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before! What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!” – How the Grinch Stole Christmas


Looking quite out of place and very disturbing in his makeshift Santa get-up, the Grinch slithers down chimneys with empty bags and stealing the Whos’ presents, their food, even the logs from their humble Who-fires. He takes the ramshackle sleigh to Mt. Crumpit to dump it and waits to hear the sobs of the Whos when they wake up and discover the trappings of Christmas have disappeared.

Imagine the Whos’ dismay when they discover the evil-doings of Grinch in his anti-Santa guise. But what is that sound? It’s not sobbing, but singing! Children simultaneously adore and fear this triumphant, twisted Seussian testimonial to the undaunted cheerfulness of the Whos, the transcendent nature of joy, and of course, the growth potential of a heart that’s two sizes too small.


How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. Seuss is a tiny little 64-page children’s Christmas picture book that I loved! Noly and I chose this one as one of the BOTM picks for #MerryDecember for our Hype-A-Thon Readathon, it was so lovely!

The beauty of this book is in reading it by yourself and going in somewhat blind. I’m sure many of you have seen the movies that were adapted from this book as I have, but the book is just short, sweet and carries a beautiful message!

We actually read this book in 6 minutes and we will be hard-pressed to beat that record. We meet the Grinch, a bit of a sad and miserable fellow as he is looking down from Mount Crumpit at the Who village. The Whos – funny little people that you may have met in other Dr. Seuss books or in Horton Hears a Who (a lovely film I recommend!) – are getting ready for Christmas, putting up decorations, cooking food, and just being happy little Whos. However, the Grinch isn’t happy about this and wonders what he can do. The idea pops into his head and he decides that he has to stop Christmas from coming!

I had a smile on my face the whole way through this book, it is very simple, but the rimes, the play on words and the general lovely Christmassy vibe of the book was definitely felt throughout. I think this would be a marvellous book to read to children at Christmas-time. Yes, it is rather old, but the message it conveys is still relevant today, actually, I would say more so now than ever. We need more happy books like this one.

I adored it. The drawings in this book are also fantastic and in the beautiful, funny style of all of Dr. Seuss books. I honestly felt like I had gone back in time, I used to have some of the books and even a practice book for spelling and maths (not that I was any good at the latter, however many cute drawings the book had).

I was pleasantly surprised by this book, I knew I was going to enjoy it, but I didn’t expect to read it that fast. I think it would actually be a great book to just pick up and whizz through if you’re feeling a little under the weather or need a boost. It definitely made me feel all warm and happy!


Overall, this was such a sweet little book with one of the most important messages we need nowadays. Christmas, and birthdays and every other day – actually life in general – is not about how many presents there are under the tree or in your stocking, it’s not about how many dishes are on the table or how expensive anything was, it’s not about material things, it’s about being happy, spending time with family and most importantly it’s about the people you love and who love you back. It’s such an important message to remember, especially at the minute with the current world situation.

I gave this book 5 stars. I can’t find anything to fault it. It was a lovely little book and I had fun reading it, and I definitely needed the smile it gave me. I highly recommend to everyone, whether you need a boost or if you are picking it for your children, sisters, brothers, nieces and nephews, etc. And I hope you will love it as much as Noly and I did.

This list includes some affiliate links. If you decide to purchase a book from one of my links, I may earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you.

If you would like to purchase this book, you can find it here:  Amazon UK  – Amazon FRAmazon USThe Book DepositoryAudible FRWaterstonesBarnes and NobleBetterWorldBooks


Letters from Father Christmas

Title: Letters From Father Christmas

Author: J.R.R. Tolkien

Published: First published 1976 – 1st of October 2009 – Harper Collins

Format: Paperback – 159 pages

“Here we are again! Bless me, I believe I said that before—but after all you don’t want Christmas to be different each year, do you?” – Letters From Father Christmas


Can you imagine writing to Father Christmas and actually getting a reply? For more than twenty years, the children of J.R.R. Tolkien received letters from the North Pole – from Father Christmas himself!

They told wonderful stories of mischief and disaster, adventures, and battles: how the reindeer got loose and scattered presents all over the place, how the accident-prone Polar Bear climbed the North Pole and fell through the roof of Father Christmas’s house, and many others.


Letters From Father Christmas by J.J.R. Tolkien is a Classic Christmas fantasy story in which the author writes to his children every year, pretending to be Father Christmas and telling them stories about everything that goes on at the North Pole!

This one was again, not at all what I was expecting as I thought it was going to be in a novel format but when it arrived and I saw the individual letters with pictures of the letters, envelopes and lovely drawings done by Father Christmas and Polar Bear, I was just so happy. I haven’t read that many Christmassy books because it’s something I’ve never really thought about and I usually don’t have that much time about the festive period, but I will definitely be making an effort from now to read more festive stories.

This book made me smile from start to finish and it even got a few laughs out of me (I never laugh while reading, so this is a testament to its loveliness and funniness). I’m glad that the letters had been transcribed and typed because the writing on the letters was sometimes unreadable because it was all squiggly! However, when Polar Bear took over from Father Christmas, the writing was a lot thicker and blocky, and he even invented his own alphabet!

I was so invested in this book and we all know that it’s only make-believe, but I think this was such a sweet idea that Tolkien had. He kept the magic alive for his children for so many years! Some letters were longer than others, some really long and talked about so many adventures that Polar Bear and Father Christmas had gotten up to, but it was so lovely! I also thought that it was great how the author managed to incorporate things that were happening in his and his children’s lives (like the Second World War for instance), and it made it a very profound and well thought-out book!


Overall, I loved this book so much! It was such a fun, sweet, clever and creative story, it incorporated real elements with more fantastical ones and I loved reading all about Father Christmas and Polar Bear’s adventures, how they fought off the baddies and everything they did to make sure that the presents arrived safely!

I gave this book 4.5 stars, it was just missing a little something in a few chapters I thought, I can’t put my finger on what it was, but I’m sure it’s just me being picky. If you love Christmas, you will love this book. And if you have children or any youngsters in your family, then this would be a great addition to their library because it’s sweet, filled with love, happiness, and a lot of silly stories. I highly recommend it.

4.5-star rating

This list includes some affiliate links. If you decide to purchase a book from one of my links, I may earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you.

If you would like to purchase this book, you can find it here:  Amazon UK  – Amazon FRAmazon USThe Book DepositoryAudible FRWaterstonesBarnes and NobleAudible UKBlackwell’sBetterWorldBooks


Title: A Christmas Carol

Author: Charles Dickens

Published: First published 1943 – 1st of January 2003 – The Children’s Golden Library – Fall River Press

Format: Hardback – 92 pages

“There is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good humour.” – A Christmas Carol


The story of Ebenezer Scrooge opens on a Christmas Eve as cold as Scrooge’s own heart. That night, he receives three ghostly visitors: the terrifying spirits of Christmas Past, Present, and Yet to Come.

Each takes him on a heart-stopping journey, yielding glimpses of Tiny Tim and Bob Cratchit, the horrifying spectres of Want and Ignorance, even Scrooge’s painfully hopeful younger self.

Will Scrooge’s heart be opened? Can he reverse the miserable future he is forced to see?


A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens is the final book I will be talking about today, and as I’m sure many of you are aware, it is Classic Christmas story. It has been adapted numerous times and I’ve seen many of them, but it has taken me years to finally get to it. The edition I have is not the prettiest, unfortunately, but it is a special edition and I’m not sure why it took me so many years to get to it when I’ve had it on my shelves since I was at least 15.

I’m glad that Noly and I were able to finish this book because it was a great one with a lovely message to read right at the end of the year and keep the festive cheer going for a little while longer. I have to admit, however, that this was my least favourite book of this batch and I think the main reason behind that is that I struggled with some parts, and I don’t really know why. I already knew the story, but there are quite a few differences between the movies I’ve seen and the book, and the third chapter was really difficult for me to read for some reason.

Despite me struggling a little with the language and maybe just the way it was written, I had a lot of fun reading it with Noly and I’m sure that when I decide to reread it (I’m thinking I’ll have to reread it every Christmas Eve) it will be easier for me. I know it’s because I’m not that used to Classics, despite my favourite book being Les Misérables by Victor Hugo, but this time the enjoyment that dwindled a little was all on me and my brain that did not want to take it in. It is old fashioned, the language is a bit complicated and there is a little waffle, but it didn’t bother me above my stumbling a few times.

It was really fun meeting Scrooge and the Ghosts of Christmas. And I really liked the whole vibe of the book, it definitely got a little bit dark at one point, but once Scrooge started to understand and want to change, it lightened up. I’m not going to say much more about this book because it’s a nice one to go in without too many expectations or too much knowledge and I did really enjoy it.


I’m so glad I finally read this book and I’m so glad I enjoyed it. The more I think about it, the more I know I’ll enjoy it more every time I read it and I’m already excited for my reread of it later in the year!

The writing style was obviously a little tricky for me, but I honestly didn’t find it as bad as some Classics I’ve tried – and failed – to read in the past. It wasn’t slow because it’s only a really short book, but the chapters were fairly long and did slow the pacing down a little bit. Although I feel like we read this one really quickly.

This one did surprise me, but in a pleasant way and I gave it 3.5 stars! I’m really glad I got the chance and time to read it and I’m sure it’s quickly going to become a firm part of my Christmas routine! I recommend this book if you like Classics, stories with ghosts, and most important of all if you love Christmas!

3.5-star rating

This list includes some affiliate links. If you decide to purchase a book from one of my links, I may earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you.

If you would like to purchase this book, you can find it here:  Amazon UK  – Amazon FR – Amazon USAbeBooksThe Book DepositoryAudible FRWaterstonesBarnes and NobleAudible UKScrib’dKoboBlackwell’sBetterWorldBooks


Well! I’m sorry that was a bit long. Despite these three being mini-reviews, I had quite a bit to say about each book! I am so glad I was able to read each of these books with Noly, it was a lovely experience and it has shown me that I do like Christmas books. So, I’m going to do my best to read more, and I’m sure Noly has many recommendations for me!

That’s all for now, I hope you enjoyed this post, see you soon, stay safe,

Ellie xx

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