10 books like A Christmas Carol

By Charles Dickens,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like A Christmas Carol. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Lolita

By Vladimir Nabokov,

Book cover of Lolita

This book is an astounding and disturbing look into the mind and heart of a pedophile. Humbert Humbert, with his pretensions of literary brilliance, his ornate use of the French language, and his justification of his illegal and immoral actions, will fascinate the reader. What makes a man make terrible choices? Why can’t he fit into the mold of human respectability? And the victim, Lolita, what makes her go along with his depravity? Written in 1958, Lolita is heavy with internal ramblings but still fascinating.

Lolita

By Vladimir Nabokov,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Lolita as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta: the tip of my tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta.'

Humbert Humbert is a middle-aged, frustrated college professor. In love with his landlady's twelve-year-old daughter Lolita, he'll do anything to possess her. Unable and unwilling to stop himself, he is prepared to commit any crime to get what he wants.

Is he in love or insane? A silver-tongued poet or a pervert? A tortured soul or a monster? Or is he all…


Christmas Day in the Morning

By Pearl S. Bucks, Mark Buehner (illustrator),

Book cover of Christmas Day in the Morning

This touching tale, set on a farm, captures the timeless desire we all have to give the perfect gift to those we love. Rob learns the true meaning of love as he gives of himself, and finds a way to surprise his father. Buck has a beautiful way of showing rather than telling, and pulls us in with hope and vulnerability. A gift of love is the best gift of all, and Christmas is the perfect time to share this tender family story.

Christmas Day in the Morning

By Pearl S. Bucks, Mark Buehner (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Christmas Day in the Morning as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The true joy of Christmas is to love and to awaken love.

"Christmas Day in the Morning is as gorgeous as the day it celebrates. And unlike so many other presents, the real gift isn't the book itself, it's the simple, pure message. If you give anything this year, give love."
--Jason F. Wright, New York Times best-selling author of Christmas Jars

In this adaptation of "Christmas Day in the Morning" Rob looks back on his boyhood and remembers giving an unusual gift of self a gift that filled him with Christmas joy. Now, fifty years later, Rob realizes he…


Papa Panov's Special Christmas

By Leo Tolstoy,

Book cover of Papa Panov's Special Christmas

This heart-warming tale is a true Christmas classic. A lonely old shoemaker dreams that Jesus will come and visit him, so he eagerly anticipates the event, hoping to make him a special pair of shoes. Instead, his heart is tugged by others in need, and he helps three different people, from a street sweeper to a beggar. Finally, he gives up waiting for Christ to visit and realizes it was only a dream. But then he hears the voice of Jesus and learns that Jesus came to him in every person he helped that day.

Papa Panov's Special Christmas

By Leo Tolstoy,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Papa Panov's Special Christmas as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Originally written by French author Reuben Saillens and later retold by Leo Tolstoy, this endearing story has now acquired the status of a folk-tale. The heart-warming story of Papa Panov's generosity reflects the true spirit of Christmas. It is Christmas Day, and Papa Panov, the lonely old shoemaker, is expecting a special visitor. Things do not turn out at all as he thought, but by the end of the day the sparkle is back behind his little spectacles. A beautiful gift edition of a much-loved classic.


The Gift of the Magi

By O. Henry,

Book cover of The Gift of the Magi

This story shines a spotlight on selfless love. I cried buckets when I read this as a child. I also wondered if I’d ever be willing to cut my hair, as Della did, to raise the money to buy Jim that watch chain. I’m still not sure I would. The story beautifully articulates the parameters of selfless love. I’ve always been fascinated by this theme.

The Gift of the Magi

By O. Henry,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Gift of the Magi as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"The Gift of the Magi" is a short story, about a young married couple and how they deal with the challenge of buying secret Christmas gifts for each other with very little money. As a sentimental story with a moral lesson about gift-giving, it has been a popular one for adaptation, especially for presentation during the Christmas season.


The Elves And The Shoemaker

By Grimm Brothers, Jim LaMarche,

Book cover of The Elves And The Shoemaker

Christmas is a wonderful time for magical tales that children love. In this one, a poor but good-hearted cobbler is rewarded for his honesty during the night, when clever elves sneak into his shop and make shoes for him to sell. It gives children the chance to imagine invisible helpers, and also the thrill of doing good deeds in secret.

The Elves And The Shoemaker

By Grimm Brothers, Jim LaMarche,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Elves And The Shoemaker as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Here is the classic tale of elfin magic, loved by generations of children and made new by an artist of international acclaim. Jim LaMarche's stunning paintings, reminiscent of his earlier work in The Rainbabies, are the perfect compliment to this favorite Grimm fairy tale.


The Time Machine

By H.G. Wells,

Book cover of The Time Machine

The novella that gave birth to science fiction and introduced the world (and a very young me) to the magical concept of time travel. After hosting a dinner party, and via his “time machine” (a term coined by the author), the Time Traveller embarks on a journey to the year 802,701 when our Earth has evolved into a lush paradise seemingly void of industry. Humans have become fragile, docile, and childlike (the Eloi), lacking curiosity about their world or the discipline to maintain it or build upon it. They fear the night, but remain silent about their reason. The Time Traveller finally discovers the truth about their fears as fearsome subterranean creatures (the Morlocks) capture the Time Machine and set a trap to ensnare the Traveller. How did humanity evolve into such beings, he wonders, and will he ever be able to return home to tell his fantastic tale?…

The Time Machine

By H.G. Wells,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked The Time Machine as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A brilliant scientist constructs a machine, which, with the pull of a lever, propels him to the year AD 802,701.

Part of the Macmillan Collector's Library; a series of stunning, clothbound, pocket-sized classics with gold foiled edges and ribbon markers. These beautiful books make perfect gifts or a treat for any book lover. This edition of The Time Machine features an introduction by Dr Mark Bould.

The Time Traveller finds himself in a verdant, seemingly idyllic landscape where he is greeted by the diminutive Eloi people. The Eloi are beautiful but weak and indolent, and the explorer is perplexed by…


Never Let Me Go

By Kazuo Ishiguro,

Book cover of Never Let Me Go

This is a whole different take on human cloning. Never Let Me Go depicts a world in which people are cloned to create organ donors for the sick, necessarily limiting the lifespan of the clones. It is the story of the passions, relationships, and emotions of the clones and their attempts to delay their fate. As with any book by Kazuo Ishiguro, this is beautifully written, and an insightful study of human nature.

Never Let Me Go

By Kazuo Ishiguro,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked Never Let Me Go as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the most acclaimed novels of the 21st Century, from the Nobel Prize-winning author

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize

Kazuo Ishiguro imagines the lives of a group of students growing up in a darkly skewed version of contemporary England. Narrated by Kathy, now thirty-one, Never Let Me Go dramatises her attempts to come to terms with her childhood at the seemingly idyllic Hailsham School and with the fate that has always awaited her and her closest friends in the wider world. A story of love, friendship and memory, Never Let Me Go is charged throughout with a sense…


Letters from Father Christmas

By J.R.R. Tolkien,

Book cover of Letters from Father Christmas

Yes, that J.R.R. Tolkien. Each year he took a break from Middle-earth to write and illustrate incredible letters from Father Christmas to his and Edith’s four children, John, Michael, Christopher, and Priscilla. Being Tolkien, he created an entire polar world and history in the letters, which feature elves, goblins—who launch a major attack one year—and Father Christmas’s great assistant and companion, North Polar Bear. Here is a high Yuletide adventure from the fantasy Master, himself. And somehow reading it makes you feel more creative yourself.

Letters from Father Christmas

By J.R.R. Tolkien,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Letters from Father Christmas as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This beautiful, deluxe slipcased edition of Tolkien's famous illustrated letters from Father Christmas to his children includes for the first time every available letter, picture and envelope that he sent them, reproduced in glorious colour. The perfect Christmas gift for Tolkien lovers of all ages.

This classic festive book of Tolkien's amazing Father Christmas letters written to his children between the 1920s and the 1940s has been reworked into a sumptuous, new deluxe edition. It contains brand new high-quality digital reproductions of his wonderful letters and pictures, including a number of them that have never been printed before, a revised…


Lazarillo de Tormes / The Guide Boy of Tormes

By Anonymous,

Book cover of Lazarillo de Tormes / The Guide Boy of Tormes

Published way back in 1554, this revolutionary novel is irreverent, amusing, and gloriously critical of the hypocrisy of 16th century Spanish society and, by extension, our own times. The main character is a destitute scoundrel named Lazarillo who seeks to better his fortunes while in the service of a brutal priest and host of other unseemly characters. By creating an anti-hero who is a witty misfit and outcast, and by portraying Spanish society as morally bankrupt, the author earned the wrath of the Spanish monarchy – which banned the novel – and the Catholic Church, which placed it on its Index of forbidden literature. My novel is also on the Church’s list of forbidden books, so I feel a special kinship with the unnamed author of this groundbreaking work.    

Lazarillo de Tormes / The Guide Boy of Tormes

By Anonymous,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Lazarillo de Tormes / The Guide Boy of Tormes as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Los mejores libros jamás escritos

Edición de Florencio Sevilla Arroyo, catedrático de Filología Española en la Universidad Autónoma de Madrid

El Lazarillo de Tormes inauguró el género de la novela picaresca. Relata las desventuras que un joven de origen humilde sufre al servicio de sus amos, entre los que se cuentan un ciego, un clérigo y un hidalgo pobre. Los avatares por los que pasa Lázaro son un magnífico pretexto para plasmar una ácida crítica a la sociedad de la época. Asimismo, el tratamiento de la anécdota, el lenguaje sobrio y eficaz, y una nueva concepción en el uso de…


One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

By Ken Kesey,

Book cover of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

Yikes! Kesey wrote this the year I was born and published it a few years later, and its scenes haunt me still. Need a lesson in character development? This novel has it all: the wretched head nurse of the mental institution, Nurse Ratched, the stuttering Billy Bibbit (such a cruel name!), the “Chief,” who narrates and holds secrets, and among many others, our villain, Randle McMurphy, who inspired me to cheer for his acts of defiance while I cringed from the consequences. 

This novel about authority, control, brutal manipulation, and railing against it all will challenge all notions of a happy ending. It’ll stick with you, for sure. As a bonus, the 1975 film adaptation with Jack Nicholson is as memorable as the novel.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

By Ken Kesey,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Boisterous, ribald, and ultimately shattering, Ken Kesey's 1962 novel has left an indelible mark on the literature of our time. Now in a new deluxe edition with a foreword by Chuck Palahniuk and cover by Joe Sacco, here is the unforgettable story of a mental ward and its inhabitants, especially the tyrannical Big Nurse Ratched and Randle Patrick McMurphy, the brawling, fun-loving new inmate who resolves to oppose her. We see the struggle through the eyes of Chief Bromden, the seemingly mute half-Indian patient who witnesses and understands McMurphy's heroic attempt to do battle with the powers that keep them…


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