Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Tales and Lore for the Holiday Season

Days grow short, nights grow long, and one thinks about curling up near the hearth with urns of tea, bowls of seasonal munchies and a stack of good books for company. This is a tradition of sorts, my annual posting of favorite reading materials for and about the holidays and the return of the light.  May the list be a candle in your window, bringing warmth, comfort and a festive spirit to you and yours. Some of these books are out of print, but they can occasionally  be found in used book shops online, and they are, very often, happy campers in your local library.  They are gems, each and every one.

The Oxford Book of Days,
Bonnie Blackburn and Leofranc Holford-Strevens

Echoes of Magic: A Study of Seasonal Festivals through the Ages,
C.A. Burland

Ancient Ways: Reclaiming Pagan Traditions,
Pauline and Dan Campanelli

Wheel of the Year: Living the Magical Life,
Pauline and Dan Campanelli

A Crown of Candles: How to Throw a Fabulous Lucia Party,
Joanna Powell Colbert

Lights of Winter: Winter Celebrations Around the World,
Heather Conrad and DeForest Walker

Medieval Holidays and Festivals: A Calendar of Celebrations,
Madeleine Pelner Cosman

The Return of the Light: Twelve Tales from Around the World
for the Winter Solstice,
Carolyn McVickar Edwards

Kindling the Celtic Spirit,
Mara Freeman

A Calendar of Festivals: Traditional Celebrations, Songs, Seasonal
Recipes and Things to Make,
Marian Green

The Sun in the Church: Cathedrals As Solar Observatories,
John L. Heilbron

Celebrate the Solstice: Honoring the Earth's Seasonal Rhythms
Through Festival and Ceremony,
Richard Heinberg

Celestially Auspicious Occasions: Seasons, Cycles and Celebrations,
Donna Henes

Stations of the Sun: A History of the Ritual Year in Britain,
Ronald Hutton

The Winter Solstice
Ellen Jackson

The Dance of Time: The Origins of the Calendar: A Miscellany of History
and Myth, Religion and Astronomy, Festivals and Feast Days,
Michael Judge

The Solstice Evergreen: History, Folklore and Origins of the Christmas Tree,
Sheryl Karas

Perpetual Almanack of Folklore,
Charles Kightly

Sacred Celebrations: A Sourcebook,
Glennie Kindred

Beyond the Blue Horizon: Myths and Legends of the Sun, Moon, Stars, and Planets, 
E.C. Krupp

Celebrations Of Light : A Year of Holidays Around the World,
Nancy Luenn and Mark Bender (Illustrator)

The Winter Solstice: The Sacred Traditions of Christmas,
John Matthews and Caitlin Matthews

Christmas in Ritual and Tradition,
Clement A. Miles

Yule: A Celebration of Light and Warmth (Holiday Series),
Dorothy Morrison

The Battle for Christmas
Stephen Nissenbaum

Sacred Origins of Profound Things: The Stories Behind the Rites
and Rituals of The World's Religions,
Charles Panati

Celebrating Winter Solstice, Theresa Reel 

The Shortest Day: Celebrating the Winter Solstice,
Wendy Pfeffer
and Jesse Reisch
The Old Magic of Christmas: Yuletide Traditions for the Darkest Days of the Year,  
Linda Raedisch

Pagan Christmas: The Plants, Spirits, and Rituals at the Origins of Yuletide,
Christian Rätsch and Claudia Müller-Ebeling

All Around the Year, Holidays and Celebrations in American Life,
Jack Santino

Circle Round: Raising Children in the Goddess Tradition,
Starhawk, Anne Hill and Diane Baker

Keeping Christmas: Yuletide Traditions In Norway And The New Land,
Kathleen Stokker

When Santa Was A Shaman: Ancient Origins of Santa Claus and the Christmas Tree,
Tony van Renterghem

The Fires of Yule: A Keltelven Guide for Celebrating the Winter Solstice,
Montague Whitsel

At least three of Dolores Stewart Riccio's Circle novels involve Yuletide and I shall be reading them again this year.  Last, but certainly not least, the holiday interval would not be complete without rereading Susan Cooper's Dark is Rising sequence in its entirety: Over Sea, Under Stone, The Dark is Rising, Greenwitch, The Grey King and Silver on the Tree


Jennifer said...

Oh, thank you for this list!

And I totally agree about Susan Cooper's books :)

Tabor said...

Oh, great, now I have to add to my Christmas wish list...gee!

Kiki said...

I just wonder - is this a re-post? Not that it matters but I seem to remember this lovely photo and some of the titles.... :)
I just wish I had a bit more time for (even) more books! Thanks a lot for this list

kerrdelune said...

Something of a repost with a title or two removed or added - I post a list around this time every year. The image is my favorite tattered old copy of Bullfinch's Mythology and has appeared here too. I love the buttery light falling across it.

Kameshwari said...

Other than the Friday Ramblings, this is my all-time favorite post. Sure, I could go look at posts from previous years, but the present post always gives me comfort.

Bullfinch's Mythology, hey?

Keechy said...

I'm still finding and enjoying the fiction books you recommended last year. Every one a gem. :)