What Should I Read This Christmas? 5 Indulgent Festive Reads

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means if you click a link and make a purchase I may receive a commission.

The festive season wouldn't be complete without the perfect book for company. And with so many to choose from, selecting one can put you in something of a seasonal pickle - so I've curated five great Christmas books for you; whatever your taste - picture books, murder mysteries, literary fiction - there should be something here to tickle your fancy!

So whether you're buying as a gift or treating yourself, indulge in one of these five glorious festive reads.

1. Jeanette Winterson, Christmas Days

According to Amazon:

Everybody loves a Christmas story. The tradition of the Twelve Days of Christmas is a tradition of celebration, sharing and giving. And what better way to do that than with a story?
Read these stories by the fire, in the snow, travelling home for the holidays. Give them to friends, wrap them up for someone you love, read them aloud, read them alone, read them together. Enjoy the season of peace and goodwill, mystery, and a little bit of magic.
There are ghosts here and jovial spirits. Chances at love and tricks with time.
There is frost and icicles, mistletoe and sledges. There’s a cat and a dog and a solid silver frog. There’s a Christmas cracker with a surprising gift inside.
There’s a haunted house and a SnowMama. There are Yuletides and holly wreaths. Three Kings. And a merry little Christmas time.
And for the icing on the Christmas cake, there are twelve festive recipes from Yuletides past and present. Red cabbage, gravlax, turkey biryani, sherry trifle, Mrs Winterson’s mince pies and more.

2. Kate Atkinson, Festive Spirits

According to Amazon:

Festive Spirits: Three Short Stories from the brilliant pen of Kate Atkinson. 'Lucy would have challenged anyone not to cry at the sight of their child in a Nativity play. Even a sheepish Maude, even a scowling Beatrice – currently attempting a Chinese burn on an adjacent angel. A shepherd shouted something incomprehensible to Joseph. One of the Wise Men wet himself. Beatrice waved enthusiastically – a little too enthusiastically – at Lucy from the angelic choir. It was better than any religion, Lucy thought.' From the Costa Award-winning author of LIFE AFTER LIFE.


3. Gladys Mitchell, Death Comes at Christmas

According to Amazon:

It is December and Mrs Bradley has left London behind for a relaxing visit to the Oxfordshire countryside.

Then, on Christmas Eve, a local solicitor is found dead by the river. Everyone believes that he suffered a heart attack - but Mrs Bradley is suspicious, and is soon investigating a series of disturbing clues.

As the frost thaws and spring begins, the inimitable detective must work fast if she is to protect the people close to her from a resourceful killer...


4. William Morris, V&A: The Twelve Days of Christmas

According to Amazon:


The V&A's Twelve Days of Christmas is a stunning book filled with hand-picked patterns from the V&A's collections. Featuring art work by William Morris and Charles Voysey, this is the perfect Christmas gift for any fan of art and design.

5. Stella Gibbons, Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm

According to Amazon:

Indulge in a feel-good collection of stories from the author of Cold Comfort Farm


The title story tells of a typical Christmas at the farm before the coming of Flora Poste. It is a parody of the worst sort of family Christmas: Adam Lambsbreath dresses up as Father Christmas in two of Judith's red shawls. There are unsuitable presents, unpleasant insertions into the pudding and Aunt Ada Doom orders Amos to carve the turkey, adding: 'Ay, would it were a vulture, 'twere more fitting!'