Children’s Christian book gift ideas for Christmas
There are so many great resources out there – here is just a sample to whet your appetite. None is perfect, but these are tried and tested with our families and all are worth a read. (Comments are completely subjective, as are our very vague suggested ages.)
Philippa White and Sophie van Houtryve
Some of Sophie’s choices:
The Big Picture Story Bible A Bible for children 2-7 years old. Through a careful retelling of 26 stories of the Bible, the authors show that all the individual stories form part of one big story. Lovely illustrations and great for reading out loud.
The Jesus Storybook Bible Award-winning Bible for children aged 5+. Beautiful illustrations by Jago and written with a lot of insight and humour. You can get a version that comes with CDs read by David Suchet.
The Adventure Bible Real NIV Bible for children with helpful sidebars and information boxes.
Topz Bible reading notes Daily Bible reading notes for children 7-11 with cartoons, puzzles, games and a prayer to help children engage with a passage. You can buy a whole year's subscription or just start them off with one edition for two months for only £2.99.
Grace, Gold and Glory The story of an American gymnast who against all the odds became a gold-winning Olympic champion. Here she tells her story and shares how her deep faith helped her on her journey.
The Tale of three trees: Folk tale for little ones about three young trees on a mountaintop dreaming about what to be when they grow up. Simple yet so profound.
You are Special Lovely picture book for younger children by Max Lucado showing how God loves them just as they are.
Unwrapping the greatest gift by Ann Voskamp, on Advent. Beautifully illustrated, large book based on the Jesse Tree concept. I got this as a gift.
Science Geek Sam and his secret logbook by Corien Oranje & Cees Dekker. Fantastic book about a boy called Sam who loves everything to do with science. One day a meteorite crashes into his school playground and Sam and his classmates embark on a quest to find answers to all their questions about the world and how it came into being. Can they believe in the God of the Bible and the Big Bang? This book, translated from Dutch, is a big success in the Netherlands and has endorsements from leading theologians such as NT Wright and scientists such as Andrew Briggs.
Building on Nature - the life of Antoni Gaudi. Beautiful book for children who are interested in art. It mentions how his faith in God inspired his work, and his view on nature inspired his bold architectural designs. Lovely illustrations and not many words, so appropriate for 6+.
A few of Philippa’s favourites:
Thoughts to Make Your Heart Sing is a devotional by the same pair that wrote the wonderful Jesus Storybook Bible. Just a short thought each day, based on a verse, helping children and adults alike to marvel at our great God. Gorgeous illustrations and very easy to do each night. Ages 5-10?
The Radical Book for Kids This is a beautifully-designed hardback reference book full of quirky, interesting information about a host of different Christian topics. Designed to stimulate children’s natural curiosity about our faith. Pricey but pretty. Age 8 +.
The Action Bible is a fantastic graphic novel version of the Bible - really fun and extremely readable. Some of the pictures are quite gory, though – perhaps not for the very delicate. Age 9 +.
Andy Robb has written a great series of books looking at some of the stranger incidents in the Bible. They are in glossy full colour and each story ends on a cliff-hanger so you have to look up the Bible reference to find out what happens. For instance, 50 Goriest Bible Stories. Age 7 +
The Christmas Promise Giant Colouring Poster is a huge A1-sized colouring poster on thick card. It’s lovely on its own, or could be a good way to keep children’s attention during a family Bible time (while lighting an advent candle?) Good for a spread of ages.
If you know children who like the popular Wimpy Kid or Tom Gates books, you will be familiar with books that combine text and cartoons – great for an easy read. Diary of a Disciple tells the story of Luke in the same way. A second book does the same for the book of Acts with Peter and Paul. Very accessible. Age 7 +
True is a great book of wise advice on tricky topics for pre-teen girls. Written in a friendly, big-sisterly tone, it covers issues like friendship, parents, going to church - and even boys (in a gentle way…). Age 10 or 11.
We love the Patricia St John stories – they’re old but good. Treasures of the Snow is an exciting story, realistic about how children act and feel, with an excellent portrayal of children actually becoming Christians - which was a novelty to my children when they read it. Be warned – the mother dies very early on. Perhaps one to read aloud initially – in the hope that they will get caught up in it and carry on. Age 8 +
She also has nice books for younger children too - The Other Kitten (although it did make my children plead for a cat). And The Tanglewood Secret which made me cry at the end.
She also wrote a devotional called A Young Person’s Guide to Knowing God which all my children liked when they didn’t like lots of other things. A different way to talk about God - it goes through the creed with lots of creative stories to illustrate different points.
Seeking Allah Finding Jesus is an inspiring read for teenagers that made a huge impression on my daughter. It is about a devout Muslim who becomes a Christian. Tragically, the author died earlier this year. Age 12+