The 32 Best Christmas Books Of All Time

Christmas Books
The 32 Best Christmas Books Of All Time 42

Are you looking for the best Christmas books? You’ve come to the right place! At Beyond the Bookends, we make it a goal to read as many Christmas books as possible each year so we can give you the best of the best.

We have compiled our favorite Christmas novels all in one place so you can find your next holiday read! No more scouring through too many books with no idea what to pick next.

You’ll find Christmas romances, fantasy stories, historical fiction, mystery, and book club picks. Think of this list as your one-stop shop for all things Christmas reading!

*Best Christmas novels post contains affiliate links. Purchases made through links result in a small commission to us at no cost to you. Some books have been gifted. All opinions are our own.

Table of Contents

The Best Christmas Books of 2023

Three Holidays and A Wedding

Three Holidays and a Wedding by Uzma Jalaluddin and Marissa Stapley

Maryam and Anna find themselves on a plane from Denver to Toronto in the middle of the storm of the century, they have no idea that they will spark an unexpected friendship.

When the plane is diverted to a small town outside of Ottawa with no end to the snow, they all must change their plans. Anna is not able to make it to Toronto to spend Christmas with her boyfriend, and Maryam’s sister’s wedding is in jeopardy.

This is an enchanting Hanukkah, Ramadan, romance Christmas book for 2023 with a charming small town, a snowbound inn, and a touch of fate that brings everyone together. This is a holiday book at its very best. #gifted

The Christmas Orphan's Club

The Christmas Orphan’s Club by Becca Freeman

I adore a found family story, which is why this Christmas book for 2023 made my best of list! On her first Christmas after the death of her parents, Hannah meets Finn, another orphan and together they decided to celebrate Christmas together.

It sparks a lifelong friendship, folding in two other friends into their annual holiday gatherings. But a dozen years into their tradition, life is about to change. Hannah is engaged, Finn is about to move across the country, and they have some quarrels they need to fix.

Will this be their best Christmas yet or the end of their friendship? I loved the deep look at friendship in this story. So often Christmas books revolve around romantic love and not platonic love – which is just as important!

If you are looking for a new Christmas book for 2023, grab this one immediately! #gifted

Bright LIghts, Big Christmas

Bright Lights, Big Christmas by Mary Kay Andrews

In this holiday tale, Kerry finds herself selling Christmas trees in Greenwich Village, living in a vintage camper with her brother and his dog. As she embraces the charm of the city and falls for a single dad and his adorable son, Kerry’s Christmas takes an unexpected turn when she becomes entangled in the search for a missing neighbor.

I fell in love with the little street Kerry finds herself on at Christmas, as well as her love interest, the rivalry with the tree yard across the street, and her cute little camper van. I was swept away by this magical Christmas book for 2023. #gifted

Christmas Books for 2023

14 of the Best New Christmas Books of 2023

Looking for more of Christmas books for adults? Check out the latest new releases here.

Romance Novels for Christmas

The holiday swap

Holiday Swap by Maggie Knox

When Charlie Goodwin gets a concussion, and cannot smell or taste, she doesn’t know what to do. Her job as a chef and the promotion she has been working toward is on the line.

She begs her twin sister Cass to switch places like they did when they were kids. She will take over the bakery and Cass will pretend to be her.

This adorable holiday romance is just the book to brighten your day and put a smile on your face. How could we not put it on a list of novels about food? This is one of the best holiday books we have read!

a very merry bromance

A Very Merry Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams

Technically this steamy Christmas romance novel is the 5th in the Bromance Book Club series, but it can be read as a standalone (which I know because I’ve never read any of the others!)

Jackie loved the first book in this series, so I knew I would probably want to dive into the Christmas tale. It’s all about Colton, a country star and total sweetheart, who is head-over-heels for Gretchen, a grumpy immigration attorney.

It was steamy and swoony and I loved every minute of this Christmas story that fulfills the grumpy sunshine trope with Christmas joy!! Gifted by Berkley Romance

Wreck The Halls

Wreck the Halls by Tessa Bailey

This is a perfect holiday romance. Melody and Beat’s mothers were in a band together – one that fell apart before each of them was born. They’ve only met once when they were teens, but now they are teaming up to reunite their mothers in time to perform on Christmas Eve.

Except they decide to do it via a live stream because Beat needs the money and Melody needs to break out of her sheltered life. I ADORED both of these characters and fell hard for their love story – crazy antics and all. #gifted

Copy of headers

The Best Christmas Romance Books for an Enchanting Holiday

We’ve got dozens more romantic Christmas novels on this list!

Royal Christmas Novels

A Princess for Christmas

A Princess for Christmas by Jenny Holiday

I loved this book from Jenny Holiday. It was one of the few holiday royal romance novels I’ve read. The charming setting of Eldovia in the snow with its various festivities made for a wonderful Christmas romance novel.

The male lead from NYC and his charming younger sister made for a good balance to the sheltered princess. I wasn’t expecting such a steamy book based on the description. This one is definitely not for children and is the spiciest pick from this list of books about royalty.

murder at balmoral

A Murder at Balmoral by Chris McGeorge

This was a fun and quick murder mystery set at Christmas time. It is based on the premise that a different lineage has been atop the British throne.

When the king drops dead from poisoning at Balmoral castle on Christmas day, the only people in the house are The King’s immediate family, the head of security, and the King’s personal chef. This who-dun-it and a quick and fun read that is perfect for the Christmas season.

Royal Holiday

Royal Holiday (The Wedding Date #4) by Jasmine Guilloryir?source=bk&t=beyondth06 20&bm id=default&l=ktl&linkId=bcefc84a9301bc8b83103c4e56beaebb& cb=1577585495622

Looking for a last-minute Christmas Read, New Year’s book, or the perfect holiday book? Royal Holiday was the perfect first read for winter break.

When Maddie gets Kirsten’s dream gig (styling a Royal or let’s face it, hanging out with a Royal), she brings her mom, Vivian, with her to England. ⁣Vivian meets a very handsome gentleman who happens to be the Queen’s private secretary.

Sparks fly but will this be more than just a holiday romance? This adorable read is a perfect holiday/vacation read, especially for those who love a royal romance, and is a must-read for anyone who loves Emily Henry Books. Whether or not you are reading the Jasmine Guillory books in order, this romance will be a perfect holiday read.

Christmas Books About Books

Christmas by the book

Christmas by the Book by Anne Marie Ryan

This is kinda like Love Actually in a bookshop. Nora and Simon’s bookshop is failing, but that doesn’t stop them from anonymously sending out 6 Christmas books to locals who need cheering up.

We see how their gifted books inspire changes in the lives of the recipients, how much their bookshop means to the community, and how all the of their lives intertwine.

I cried a few times while reading this heartwarming tale, but it deals with some pretty heavy subjects like death of a child and suicidal thoughts/depression. It’s really a wonderful book for the holiday season. Any true book lover will adore this Christmas tale.

The Christmas Bookshop

The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan

Jenny Colgan is back with a stand-alone Christmas romance book about a failing bookshop and the woman that saves it. Carmen is stuck with no boyfriend, no job, and living at home, while her sister Sophie seems to have it all – a beautiful house, a great husband, a killer job, and 3 kids with one more on the way.

When she realizes her client is going to lose his bookshop and home, she overs Carmen up for the job of turning the shop around, offering her a room at her house to boot.

But the long-standing rivalry between the sisters is out in full force, Carmen seems to sabotage her own happiness in the romance department, and her bookstore boss might be hiding some family secrets that need uncovering.

A charming contemporary fiction Christmas tale in true Jenny Colgan fashion, this heartwarming holiday book also has some appearances from beloved characters from previous books.

Christmas Books for Book Club

Always in December

Always, in December by Emily Stone

I was blown away by this tear-jerking story. It was a romance story for the first 30% of the book, but then it becomes something much deeper.

Josie mails a letter to her deceased parents every Christmas, but this Christmas she accidentally hits a stranger named Max with her bike on the way to the post box.

As she explored the holiday season with Max her feelings start to grow, but when he leaves unexpectedly, she’s left to deal with the aftermath of the impact he had on her heart. But fate isn’t done with their story yet as they bump into each other throughout the year.

Probably my favorite Christmas romance book of 2021, this one is a tear-jerker for sure. I sobbed for the entire last 10% of the book and it will most likely, emotionally wreck you. This book is a testament to the healing power of love and the kind of impact each of us can make on each other.

I don’t want to spoil anything, but if you are looking for a Christmas book that ends with a bow and smile, you may want to look elsewhere. Despite this, we needed to include this on our list of best holiday books.

A December to Remember - Christmas Books 2023

A December to Remember by Jenny Bayliss

Jenny Bayliss is back with an exciting holiday book about the Winter Solstice. When Simone, Maggie, and Star, half-sisters with different moms, find out their father has died they also learn that in order to receive their inheritance, they must first solve a scavenger hunt and then relaunch the town’s Winter Solstice celebration.

The sisters don’t have a relationship outside of the one month each summer they all spend together with their father. Now, they are forced to work together and rebuild their sisterly bond.

Each sister is also working through something. One is a single-mom facing eviction. One is struggling with infertility. And one is a bit adrift and trying to start over and settle down.

I adored this holiday book about love and reconnection during the holiday season. It’s probably my favorite Christmas book for 2023. #gifted

25 Days Til Christmas

25 Days ‘Til Christmas by Poppy Alexander

I read 25 Days ‘til Christmas because I wanted a lovely, Christmas romance novel. The contemporary fiction story is about a single mother who decides to do an advent calendar of activities in the hopes of bringing life back to her home. 

A cute guy befriends them and I thought I was getting the romance I was looking for.⁣ In actuality, the book takes a dark turn and deals with loneliness, depression, childhood disabilities, and grieving. 

It was so much deeper than I thought when looking at the peppy cover. ⁣I loved it. Truly. I wanted to personally walk into the pages of the book and lift her up when life knocked her down. 

I got the happy Christmas ending I wanted, but in a more meaningful way than I initially expected.⁣ I can’t recommend this one enough. 

One Last Gift and more Christmas Books for 2022

One Last Gift by Emily Stone

Emily Stone’s last book was my favorite Christmas book of 2021, so I knew I would love her newest book. This story is heartbreaking as well, but not in the same way.

Cassie has relied on her brother, Tom, since they were orphaned when she was 5. Each year, Tom creates a Christmas scavenger hunt for her, but after a sudden accident kills Tom, Cassie is left bereaved and celebrating Christmas without him.

Until she finds his final scavenger hunt. As she begins to solve the clues, her heart begins to heal, and love forms as well. This book is like the Christmas version of P.S. I Love You in the best possible way. I adored this Christmas romance novel about grief.

Copy of headers

Wonderful Christmas Book Club Books for Hosting a Holiday Book Club

We have a list of all the best Christmas books for book club so your holiday club will be perfect!

Historical Fiction Christmas Novels

Mr. Dickens and His Carol

Mr. Dickens and His Carol by Samantha Silva

Charles Dickens’s latest book is a flop and he needs money. Christmas is around the corner and he’s become someone of a grump when thinking of all the expenses coming his way.

He decides to take his publishers up on their offer to finance and Christmas novel but he can’t seem to get inspired. A chance meeting with a young woman helps give him the inspiration he requires to write his classic tale. The new perspective on the classic Christmas tale makes this a perfect pick for the best holiday books.

The Last Christmas in Paris 1

Last Christmas in Paris by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb

This is one of the books set in Paris that you will also find on our list of books set in France and it is unlike any other. It is written entirely in letter form between two friends during WWI.

You will fall in love with the characters as they fall for each other.

Evie is struggling to find a way to help out during WWI, while Thomas, her brother’s best friend, is struggling with the realities of battle. I just recently started reading WWI books and this one is high on the list. It is such a wonderful holiday book.

Jane and the Twelve Days of Christmas

Jane and the Twelve Days of Christmas by Stephanie Barron

Did you know there is a whole mystery series featuring Jane Austen as an amateur crime-solver? I had no idea until I stumbled upon this book which takes place over…you guessed it… Christmas.

There are a series of suspicious-looking deaths surrounding the home Jane is visiting for the winter holiday. As she strives to solve the mystery before more dead bodies show up, we are treated to a look at the Christmas traditions of Regency-era England.

Sweet Adult Christmas Books

The Christmas House

The Christmas House by Victoria James

This heartwarming Christmas story deals with a few heavy topics, including childhood abuse and abandonment. Charlotte comes to her grandmother Ruby’s B&B with her sister and her mother for the Holiday Season.

She is shocked to see her old friend, Wyatt, has moved in next door with his daughter. But as her romance with Wyatt begins to bloom, dark feelings and sad memories stir for both of them.

This is not so much a Christmas romance, as a story about forgiveness and overcoming childhood trauma.

Christmas by the coast

Christmas by the Coast by Mandy Baggot

I had tears rolling down my face numerous times while reading this story. Harriet has flown into the Hamptons for Christmas to help arrange her beloved grandma’s funeral.

There, she bumps into Mack, a veteran amputee who used to correspond with Harriet during his time in Afghanistan. As they begin to reconnect over various Christmas festivities, they deal with the heaviness of grief and PTSD.

In the Event of Love

In The Event of Love by Courtney Kae

Morgan is headed back to her hometown to lick her wounds and restart her career. She’s agreed to help throw a Christmas festival to save the town – unwittingly signing up to work with her ex-best friend and former crush, Rachel.

While Morgan works to save the town and Rachel’s tree farm, sparks fly. I enjoyed watching Morgan gain self-awareness and learn to communicate with her old friends and family.

Christmas hub

Delightful Books about Christmas for Kids and Adults for 2023

Find all of our holiday book list in one place at our Christmas hub!

Contemporary Fiction Adult Christmas Books

seven days of us

Seven Days of Us by Francesca Hornak

This is a hilarious look at what happens when a family is quarantined together over the holidays. The entire time I was reading this quarantine isolation book, I kept thinking to myself that it should be a movie.

Hornak takes series topics and makes them funny. This family drama book is about crazy coincidences and epic drama in one completely dysfunctional British family. 

What starts out as a family spending a quarantine quietly in the family country home, turns into something from a soap opera.  Every member of the family has their secrets and lies exposed. When I first read this holiday book, I thought it was the perfect book for book clubs. Now, after (during?) a pandemic, there is so much more for book clubs to discuss.

one day in december

One Day in December by Josie Silver

December 2018 Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick

This is another holiday book I absolutely adored. This second chance love story takes place over 10 years and you’ll be rooting for this couple the entire time. 

The perfect winter romance – this one is a bit steamy – that will have you smiling from ear to ear. I listened to this one from my local library, but it would be just as good in print. We love this pick from books about New Year’s.

Christmas Shopaholic

Christmas Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella

I read the first book in the series a million years ago and I never kept up with more than a few books in the series. Still, I love Christmas, so I obviously jumped at the chance to read this book.

Becky Branson, née Bloomwood, did not disappoint! I found myself gasping, laughing, and crying numerous times during this book. Were the scenarios over-the-top? Absolutely. But I loved every page.

I forgot just how enjoyable Becky’s antics are and her antics about motherhood actually clicked with me on a new level as a reader. Her heart-of-gold and Luke’s understanding of who she is, still give me all the gooey feelings though.

the adults

The Adults by Caroline Hulse

I was not expecting to like this book nearly as much as I ended up liking it! The Adults centers around a divorced couple, the people they are dating, and their daughter all going away for the Christmas season to resort in the mountains.

The antics these adults get up to are really something. I laughed at them numerous times and would definitely recommend it to those looking for a fun Christmas story.

Winter Street Elin Hilderbrand

Winter Street by Elin Hilderbrand

Winter Street was my first Christmas book by Hilderbrand, but I’ll be continuing this series for sure.  I fell hard for the Quinn family as they navigate their complicated family dynamic, their personal crises, and running an inn during the holiday season.

I’m shocked this hasn’t been made into a movie yet! If you are looking for a heartwarming holiday story, this is for you

Looking for more Christmas Books for kids and adults? Check out our Christmas Books Hub for book club guides, book lists, book-related present ideas, and more!

The Best Christmas Mystery Novels

Murder on the Christmas Express

Murder on the Christmas Express by Alexandra Benedict

This book is so many things in one! It’s a mystery isolation novel set on Christmas Eve about a train full of people who get snowbound – and then someone gets murdered! Luckily there is a former detective named Roz who will work the case and try to keep everyone safe.

It’s more than just a murder mystery though. This 2023 Christmas book also addresses domestic violence and rape – so please go in prepared if those are triggers for you. It’s kind of odd to put all those things in one book, but it works! #gifted

The Christmas Appeal

The Christmas Appeal by Janice Hallett

The Fairway Players theater group is back and preparing for their Christmas play. They find themselves once again in the middle of a murder that threatens to halt their production.

Hallett puts you in the detective seat as you unravel clues, sift through Christmas letters, and dig into police transcripts to unmask the culprit before the final curtain falls.

I was crying laughing reading this story. It’s equal parts hysterical and cunning and one of the best mysteries of 2023. I can never figure out the mystery before the end of Hallett’s books. #gifted

Hercule Poirot's Christmas

Hercule Poirot’s Christmas by Agatha Christie

Another wonderful mystery by Agatha Christie. I just adore her mystery books because I am always stumped! They are generally very quick reads, which is why I was able to start and finish this book on Christmas day.

Once again Poirot solves the mystery quite quickly and uncovers many family secrets along the way. 

Fantasy Christmas Books

in a holidaze and more Christmas romance books

In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren

Do you love Christmas movies? Are you obsessed with Christmas Romance books? Do you need to swoon? ⁣ If you answered yes to any of those questions, stop everything and order In a Holidaze. This is possibly my favorite Christmas novel of all time and was a must for best holiday books. ⁣

I adored Mae and Andrew’s love story. It’s set up like Groundhog’s Day with Mae repeating the same Christmas vacation until she gets it right. Time travel romance at its best. And man… does she get it right.⁣ Peppermint kisses, sexy sledding, snowball fights, Christmas Tree trimming… this book oozes cheer-filled holiday goodness with a few scenes that are steamier than a cup of cocoa.⁣

There is a reason this time travel book made our Best Books of 2020 list! This is an adorable magical realism book and a real must-read.

Just Like magic and more Christmas romance books

Just Like Magic by Sarah Hogle

If you only read one Christmas book this holiday season, let it be Just Like Magic. I adored this funny paranormal romance book and it is one of the best holiday books ever! The premise is amazing. Down-on-her-luck Bettie Hughes accidentally summons the magical Holiday Spirit, who can’t leave her until he raises her spirit level.

So going by the name of Hal, he poses as her boyfriend for her week-long family Christmas vacation. His use of magic throughout the week is hysterical. It also helps that the chemistry between Hal and Bettie crackles. It’s unlike any other Christmas story I’ve read in the best way possible! If you are looking for reverse grumpy sunshine books, this should be at the top of your list. Gifted by Putnam

Once Upon a December and more christmas romance books

Once Upon a December by Amy E. Reichart

I adored this Christmas romance novel with a magical premise. It’s all about a Christmas market and its residents who travel from town to town each Christmas. The baker, Jack loves to visit Milwaukee the most because he’s drawn to Astra, an average girl.

I loved hearing about each Christmas Jack and Astra met and how their loved formed. I also loved the magical elements of the market and how it played a crucial role in their story. This holiday book would be a great Christmas book for book clubs to discuss.

Christmas Ornaments

Looking for some fun Christmas Ornaments? Consider pairing one of the ones below with a book as a gift for a holiday-loving friend!

Did you find any Christmas books to add to your holiday to-read list?


33 of the Best Christmas Books for Kids: Jubilant Stories

Looking for Christmas books for kids? We’ve got you covered with this list!

20+ Christmas Books for Toddlers and Babies to Love in 2021

Looking for your baby or toddler’s first Christmas books? Here are our favorites!

Novel Ideas 41 1
YA Christmas books

11 YA Christmas Books – The Best Christmas Books for Teens

We’ve got a dozen charming YA Christmas books for the teens on your list!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.