The Nutcracker is a classic Christmas story that is loved around the world. Even if you have not seen the ballet or are planning to see the play this holiday you can enjoy this classic story through a book. Below is a list of Nutcracker books that tell the story each in their own way with unique illustrations or a different twist on the story.
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The Nutcracker: A Magic Theater Book by Geraldine McCaughrean
I love this book! The book is like a popup but there are no tabs or parts that stick out. As you read the story of the Nutcracker and turn the pages characters will “magically” appear on the pages. This is a fun book with beautiful illustrations of the Nutcracker.
The Nutcracker Ballet includes the traditional story for you to read. The bonus of this book is the three pages that open to create a stage and more than 40 paper dolls that you can use to retell the story of the Nutcracker. This is perfect for Nutcracker lovers!
The Nutcracker And The Mouse King by E.T.A. Hoffmann
The Nutcracker and the Mouse King tell the traditional full story of the Nutcracker. The illustrations are beautiful and detailed.
The Nutcracker by Alison Jay
The Nutcracker tells the complete story of the Nutcracker with beautiful crackled style paintings. This is a great book to read before seeing the Nutcracker ballet; children will be able to easily recognize the story and characters.
The Nutcracker by Susan Jeffers
Susan Jaffers illustrations of the Nutcracker feel larger than life in this book. The text is short but the illustrations are full of life and action. I love the illustrations and short text, this is a great books for little ones.
Nutcracker by Mary Engelbreit
This version of the Nutcracker includes fun and childlike illustrations. The story is the traditional version but the illustrations make it very unique.
My First Nutcracker by Stephanie True Peters
My First Nutcracker was written for readers that are being introduced to the story. The story is simple and the illustrations are whimsical.
Stories that Feature the Nutcracker
Becoming a Ballerina: A Nutcracker Story by Lise Friedman
Becoming a Ballerina is a great book for little ballerina’s everywhere. This is a beautiful book that features a 14 year old girl that played Maria in the Boston Ballet Nutcracker. The book is told from her point of view as she prepares for opening night of the ballet. The photographs show what backstage looks like for a live Nutcracker ballet.
Ella Bella Ballerina and The Nutcracker by James Mayhew
Ella Bella is transported to the magical world of the Nutcracker with the music from a special music box. Ella Bella travels with Clara through the land meeting the other Nutcracker characters and fighting the Mouse King. This story does tell the Nutcracker story with short text that is easy for little readers to understand.
A Nutty Nutcracker Christmas by Ralph Covert
In Nutty Nutcracker, Fritz must help Maria save Christmas from the Mouse King, who he released from a video game. This is a very mixed up version of the story that readers will enjoy.
Nutcracker Twinkle Toes by Karen Katz
Nutcracker Twinkle Toes is perfect for babies and toddlers during the holiday season. The book does not tell the story of the Nutcracker but instead features different characters that readers can touch and feel. The illustrations and hands-on pages are perfect for introducing this classic story.
Nutcracker Noel by Kate McMullan
Noel has been given the part of a tree in the Nutcracker. With a little encouragement from her teacher, she learns that a part is as important as you make it. This is a book that does show how kids can be jealous of others but reminds readers that we must always be positive and happy.
Tallulah’s Nutcracker by Marilyn Singer
Tallulah’s Nutcracker is a sweet story of Tallulah, a little girl that is in a real Nutcracker ballet. She is so excited to be in the ballet even if she has a very small part. When Tallulah goes on stage, she develops stage fright but the best part of the story is when she learns stage fright is something that all performers have.
Jake the Ballet Dog by Karen LeFrak
In Jake the Ballet Dog, Jake is backstage watching all the rehearsals for the Nutcracker and would love to be onstage with all the dancers. The book features ballet terms and glossary.
What is your favorite Nutcracker book?