Top children’s books for Christmas

Northern Books has curated a list of fabulous new books that children will love this Christmas.

The latest must-have toys are usually at the top of children’s wish lists, but that doesn’t mean they won’t appreciate a good book on Christmas Day.

Surveys of reading habits during lockdown found many children and adults rediscovered their love of reading books for pleasure, despite the lure of electronic devices.

Books + Publishing, an Australian industry publication, reports that sales of children’s, young adult and educational books increased by 7 per cent for the first eight months of 2020 (Nielsen BookScan).

Often as parents and grandparents we share books we loved as children with younger readers, but there are also dozens of new titles released at this time of year that are worth considering as gifts.

Northern Books has taken the guess work out of choosing a book, with a list of their top picks for children aged four to 12 years. Northern Books is also offering RACV Club Members a 20% discount on the six books listed below. You’ll find the discount code and terms and conditions at the end of this article.

For the best chance of getting your gift before Christmas Day, order before 11 December. Otherwise, you have until midnight on 24 December 2020 to take advantage of this offer.*

Little Lion book cover
Whose bones? book cover


Books for 4 to 8-year-olds

By Patrick Guest, illustrations by Jonathan Bentley

Windows is an uplifting story about how five children from different parts of the world connect and draw strength from their communities during a pandemic, all from behind the safety of their own windows. A valuable time capsule of what life has been like in 2020, it was inspired by the Melbourne author’s own experience of leaving the family home due to his son's Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Order here.

Little Lion
By Saroo Brierley, illustrations by Bruce Whatley

This picture book tells the extraordinary true story of Saroo Brierley, who became lost on a train in India and was adopted by an Australian family as a child. It is based on Saroo’s bestselling 2013 non-fiction book A Long Way Home, which was made into the award-winning film starring Nicole Kidman and Dev Patel. Order here.

Whose Bones?
Written and illustrated by Chihiro Takeuchi

Can you guess the animal by looking at its bones? Award-winning paper-cut artist Chihiro Takeuchi has created a clever and engaging way for children to learn about vertebrate animals. This interactive guessing game increases in complexity and shows readers how interesting science can be. Order here.

Pierre's Not There book cover
The Unadoptables book cover
Terry Denton's Really Truly Amazing Guide to Everything book cover


Books for 8 to 12-year-olds

Pierre’s Not There
By Ursula Dubosarsky, illustrations by Christopher Nielsen

This is a lyrical and imaginative story by Ursula Dubosarsky, Australian Children's Laureate for 2020-2021. It’s about a girl, Lara, who wishes she was a dog, and her wish comes true for one day when she meets young Pierre and becomes completely immersed in his beautiful antique puppet theatre. Order here.

The Unadoptables
By Hana Tooke, illustrations by Ayesha L. Rubio

Set in 1886, five close friends at Little Tulip Orphanage in Amsterdam stage a daring escape after a sinister gentleman threatens to separate them. They go on a grand adventure, meeting puppets, pirates, clockmakers and cruel villains, with a tiny clue to guide them to their mysterious new home. Order here.

Terry Denton’s Truly Amazing Guide to Everything
Written and illustrated by Terry Denton

Guaranteed to engage children and adults alike, this is a funny and fascinating tour of the history and science of the universe. Best known for co-authoring and illustrating the Treehouse series with Andy Griffiths, Denton introduces children to weather, time, evolution and amazing inventions. Order here


*Terms and conditions

Northern Books discount offer on these titles is available to RACV Club Members until midnight, 24 December 2020. 

Use RACV discount code “RACV10” to get an extra 10% off all books, which are already discounted by 10%. Total 20% discount will be available for RACV Club Members. 

Online purchases through or use direct links below each book listed.

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