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My Top 5: Children’s picture books for Christmas

Christmas is my favourite time of year for buying children’s books. Below are some of Cyrus’s top picks for the festive season.

It’s A Long Night For Santa by Chris Tetreault-Blay
Children's picture books for Christmas
It’s A Long Night For Santa by Chris Tetreault-Blay. DISCLOSURE: GIFTED BY AUTHOR.

We absolutely adore the Little Brown Moth character in Chris’s new book, It’s A Long Night For Santa. Having previously starred in ‘It’s a Long Way to the Moon’ this little creature has returned in a heart-warming, festive adventure.

This time the rhyming tale is centred on Christmas and contains all of the magic and charm of literature’s biggest children’s classics. The story begins on Christmas Eve when the Little Brown Moth finds himself lost in a blanket of fog. He spies a distant red light and realises that it’s Rudolph and the other reindeer pulling Santa’s sleigh. The moth stops for a rest on the sleigh where he is discovered by Santa. Santa then enlists the little moth’s help to deliver the remaining presents, making a little boy’s dream come true.

What we love about the story:

It’s a Long Night for Santa has text that is both simple and faultless. It’s underlying message is about love and attachment. The illustrations are stunning and particularly powerful. Tetreault-Blay encapsulates the vulnerability and relief of the little moth after becoming lost in the fog. Just beautiful! It’s a Long Night for Santa is published by Cranthorpe Millner Publishers and can be bought on Amazon here.

The North Pole Lockdown by Danielle Corrigan

Children's picture books for Christmas
The North Pole Lockdown by Danielle Corrigan – DISCLOSURE: GIFTED BY AUTHOR.

Danielle Corrigan’s ‘The North Pole Lockdown’ is a fun, bold and unforgettable story about Father Christmas, his elves, the reindeers and everyone else at the North Pole – as they deal with the pandemic of 2020. It is of course a unique Christmas children’s story, and one that opens up discussions about hygiene, mental health and how to embrace the festive spirit in this most unusual time. It’s set to become a timeless classic!

Danielle is just a regular mum, who happens to enjoy writing poems and stories for her children. Lockdown has been such a strange time for everyone, especially children and so she felt it was important to capture some memories and make them into a fun story for them to enjoy. Making people smile has always been important to her, so she is hoping this book does that for her readers.

What we love about the story:

Despite the seriousness of lockdown, Corrigan approaches the subject sensitively and with a good injection of humour. Cyrus loves the idea of sprouty kebabs! The North Pole Lockdown’, from Book Bubble Press is available to buy on Amazon here.

Toggs The Christmas Elf with a Fitting Gift by Keith McDuffee
Children's picture books for Christmas
Toggs The Christmas Elf with a Fitting Gift by Keith McDuffee

Everyone talks about the Christmas elves who make all of the toys for children, but no one seems to think of who is making all the clothes!

Meet Toggs, the Christmas elf who has a passion for fashion, a wizard with the scissors, and a head for thread. While Toggs loves his work so much, he feels at times neglected and disrespected. He soon finds his fears to be silly. An example of the importance of self-confidence and not allowing fears to overcome one’s true calling.

The e-book is great for four-year-olds and available to buy on Amazon here with the hard copy edition out next season.

Cyrus The Elf Who Saved Christmas – personalised by Wonderbly
Children's picture books for Christmas
Cyrus The Elf Who Saved Christmas by Wonderbly – DISCLOSURE: GIFTED BY WONDERBLY.

The latest book we have received are from Wonderbly and it has certainly been little tester approved. Wonderbly understand that it’s not just about sticking a child’s name on the front cover, it’s about little ones leading their own adventure.

Families can create their own character by choosing hair colour, skin tone and gender. Once you have picked out your protagonist, you can then add a personalised message to the inside pages your book. We chose a special message from maman va baba (mum and dad) to add a special Persian touch to ours.

The Wonderbly range is available in hard back and soft back and can be gift-boxed for special occasions too. We chose the soft cover version and were not disappointed as it is a sturdy option and stylishly formatted. At £21.99, it’s not the cheapest book we’ve ever read, but it’s good value by the standards of many other personalised books, and a smash hit with young C. I read it four times at bedtime on the day it arrived. The Wonderbly range is definitely a cut above the rest when it comes to attention to detail.

There’s a new favourite in our house: Cyrus, The Elf Who Saved Christmas written by David Cadji-Newby and illustrated by Josh Cleland is a clear winner.

What we love about the story:

Cyrus loved the idea that elves are really children in this story-book and really took an interest in the tale. It’s definitely a story to empower young children, teaching them about their own strengths and how to believe in themselves. I’m sure we’ll be reading this one for many festive seasons to come too!

Wonderbly has 30 titles to choose from, so there is something for everyone when it comes to buying a keepsake. They also ship worldwide to your doorstep.


Readers of Saffron and Cyrus can also get £10 off their first personalised books when they sign up here. For more good reads, check out our Jungle Jam review here.

Uh Oh Milo – The Excited Elf
Uh Oh Milo – The Excited Elf

Especially for Christmas the creators of Uh Oh Milo! have launched a new festive story – Uh Oh Milo! The Excited Elf.

The Excited Elf has a very important job making sure children everywhere are fast asleep, so that a very special visitor can drop down the chimney on Christmas Eve. There’s just one problem – it’s FAR too EXCITING!

Can Granny get this special Christmas Mischief Maker to calm down and help Milo and Mary fall asleep before it’s too late?

What we love about the book:

We discovered the Uh Oh Milo range by author Kate Wogan during the first lockdown. The new children’s picture book uses mythical mischief makers and magic to help little C learn about manners.

He loves the bright, bold illustrations which are full of humorous detail and the book itself is bursting with entertaining language! It’s pitched perfectly at children of around four years old because it’s fun, daft and educational. It is a delight to read with Cyrus during our bath, book, bedtime routine.


Saffron and Cyrus is a Newcastle-based family lifestyle blog, covering diversity, self-care, days out, travel, reviews, recipes and more from our family life.
The blog is written by new mum over 40, Aranda, with input from hubby H and four-year-old Cyrus.

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