Each year, it is the same. A few days before Christmas, you hesitate in front of the windows of the shops. Your child will prefer a doll, a dinette, a board game, of the ball? Hard to say. He dreams sometimes pirate, sometimes a magician, doctor, inspector, spy, musician, actor and dancer? So what to do? Buy him a book, of course! Literature is a wonderful way to meet the imagination of your little ones. All tastes are allowed. Le Figaro offers a short list of books to put under the christmas tree.

● For the dancers): The Dance of the Swan , Laurel Snyder, and Julie Morstad (The Shelf from the bottom)

The bottom shelf

The snow falls on the city. Everything is white. The buildings, the road… Everything, or almost. There in the middle of the street, a sled carries Anna and her mom. They are highly primed because tonight is not a night like any other. They go to see a ballet. As the curtain rises, Anna feels her feet up. The next day, the girl can no longer remain seated. She dances, jumps, flies, twirls. Anna wants to become a dancer. After two years spent in preparation, Anna must put finally the dress and the slippers of ballerina. The little rat is transformed into a swan…. And flies away. The world the covers of gold. A rare bird no longer touches ground. “Until a cold snap hits Anna”…

Anna Pavlova was born in 1881. She was one of the greatest dancers star of his time. A century yet, after its success, only the enthusiasts know his name. So this is an album essential Laurel Snyder and Julie Morstad. The pencil is also graceful that story, delicate. We like to contemplate the details of the drawings, dresses, and scenery that make the pages of the Dance of The Swan. This is the flamboyant story of a phoenix that is reborn from its ashes.

After 6 years, 52 pages, € 16

● For capricious: The Princess who dreamed of being a little girl , Jérôme Attal, Fred, Bernard and Elise Reslinger (The label in the forest)

The label in the forest

This is the story of a beautiful princess who was soon six years old. It is high-such as “three apples + ten oranges + three leeks + five cherry tomatoes”. Marie-Fortunée, it is his first name, hate the name that he chose his parents. Then on the day of her birthday, she decides to call Lola-Wolf. But Lola-Wolf is never satisfied. She also wants to become a girl like the others. The toys, the clothes, the label… Lola-Wolf did that to make! Responding to his whim, the king organizes a day of open door of their castle. Well seen! There, among the crowd, the child is three girlfriends. Together, they decide to go to the park. Near a forest who is sick, who sneezes because of a certain princess…

This is a graphic novel and a soundtrack single that imagined the song-writer Jerome Attal, the singer Elise Reslinger and the cartoonist Fred Bernard. The text fed images also round removed is not in fact a fairy tale princess as the other. Not content to offer a narrative of teaching that helps to explain to the child why he should not be capricious, the three authors thought of a text that knows how to arouse with meekness the ecological awareness of the little reader. Any person, as young as she is, can act on his environment. Lola-Wolf is part of it. As the child and the parents who read it and listen to it.

After 6 years, with CD of 28 minutes, 17,50 €

● For children who love cars: The incredible history of the automobile , Giles Chapman, illustrated by US Now (Glénat jeunesse)

Glénat jeunesse

Twenty years before the Revolution, a Frenchman by the name of Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot built the first road vehicle to steam. The object is afraid. Causes of whistling shrill and steam explosions. But the race has the speed is launched. In 1876, in Germany, the inventor Nikolaus Otto designed the internal combustion engine. Ten years later, it is the turn of Karl Benz to innovate. He patented his Motorwagen three wheels. The adventure of the car can start. Since then, thousands of models that have been invented. The Daimler uk, the Mercedes, the Ford Model T american, the Citroën, the French, the BMW German… The cars each have marked their time. And the popular imagination. Consider, for instance, the Delorean DMC-12 from Back to the future!

The incredible history of the automobile of Giles Chapman does not lie about his ambitions. The book does a superb adventure of the car. Anecdotes, historical moments, models, extraordinary… it’s All there. Including the glossary. The first true automobile race in 1895 to the “keijidosha” japanese, passing by the Jeep of the american army during the Second world War, the author wants to be verbose and omits no detail. He does not forget even to speak of pollution using the words “threat to the environment” and questioning the future of the automobile. An exciting book for the big and small boobies of the steering wheel.

After 6 years, 48 pages,16,95 €

● For aesthetes: Maestro Thibault Prugne, narrated by François Morel, and put into a song by Jean-Pierre Jolicard, (Margot)


Teo is not a small boy like any other. Adopted at the age of 2 years by a shipwright, the child hears music everywhere. In the clinking of the masts, in the lapping of the waves… The notes resonate all the time in his head. But his father did not what to do. He wants his son works in the fishing community. Then, to make it sound its charengo, the instrument that he has kept from his parents, Teo needs to take the wide aboard a boat. One evening, while he plucks its strings, a strange melody rises from the sea. A man plays the guitar alongside a pretty young girl, all dressed in red. He comes from a family of musicians. Teo does not believe his eyes, nor his ears. But this night, what he thought was a dream will become reality…

it is Impossible not to think about the fabulous film Coco of studios Disney and Pixar. Impossible not to not think, to a certain extent, the Scent of Süskind. There are indeed a lot of engineering that emerges from the text and images of Thibault Prugne. The detail provided in the design is worthy of a goldsmith. But be careful! The technique does not erase the emotion. It melts easily before the gaze of the beautiful Wayra… And what about the sounds of flamenco that accompany the audio playback of François Morel? Together they form a musical tale delightful.

After 8 years, hasvec CD, 22, 90 euros

● For younger children: The night of Christmas , illustrated by Elsa Fouquier (Gallimard Jeunesse)


It is snowing. Everywhere, on land and on the roofs. A white rabbit scatters its little legs, while a little sparrow is watching it pass without singing. All is quiet in the village. The stars shine in the dark night. But what is he there in the sky? It is father Christmas! With the help of his little helpers, he has a mission to put all of his gifts at the foot of the fir trees. But shhh! In the next room, a little girl sleeps soundly. It should not still find his package…

The small book illustrated by Elsa Fouquier has the gift of making us fall back in childhood. Long live the wind, My beautiful fir tree…Each page of the book to rediscover the greatest Christmas songs. And this is not all. Not content to make it resonate these sounds in the winter, the album shines as our reading, the stars in the sky of the homes visited by father Christmas. We even heard her laugh then, a little girl discovers her gift under the christmas tree. Magic!

Since 1 year, 8 pages, 14,90 €

● For young philosophers: Pierre Rabhi, the child of the desert (Feather core), by Claire Eggermont and illustrated by Marc n’guessan

“Our earth is a mother that lives and breathes. You ask a lot, but you do not give him anything in return. There is an urgent need to re-create the great circle of solidarity between the sky and the earth, plants, animals, and yourself.” Here is the preamble to the book written by Claire Eggermont and illustrated by Marc n’guessan.

For the first time, and after many books, including sobriety happy, Pierre Rabhi is aimed at children to tell them his life, his encounters and his battle for agroecology and invite them to “do their part”. The words are simple, the story is very touching, and rich learning for youth, in quest of a “simple happy”. The book is divided into ten chapters which are read one-by-one each evening before going to sleep.

The life of the charismatic figure of the organic farmer, at once a philosopher and a peasant, is a true novel, the oasis in the heart of the desert to Kenadsa, where he was born, his desire to return to mother earth through its adoption by the Roumis (name by which muslims refer to a christian) and his life of factory worker in Paris.

The little man does not believe in the power of the bank account but in the capacity of human beings to be content with little. He decides to replicate the natural processes to make the earth more fertile than it was. The lesser seed fascinates him. At the end of seven years, the running water was finally installed in his farm to Montchamp, then the electricity six years after and their level of very simple life had improved. Then he organizes small conferences to share his experience. He knows how to restore life to a land very poor, including seed forgotten. Peter was therefore invited by the government of Burkina Faso to teach his “agroecology” in the schools of young farmers. His advice bore fruit, faithful to the legend of the hummingbird, which “does its part” to settle the forest fire. He became a “farmer without frontiers”, a teacher, wherever possible, environmentally friendly farming life. Today the citizens ‘ movement, Hummingbird brings together thousands of people in France for trying to serve humans and nature.

From 7 years, 112 pages, 18 euros

For fans of Peppa Pig version retro: The Family Pig, the integral (the arena) of Mary-

Editions Les Arènes

Agnès Gaudrat and Colette Camil

As the stories of the Father Castor, the adventures of the family Pig, are timeless. The characters are funny and endearing. The stories are very well written and tender, and it happens to stop. The series iconic stories published in the newspaper The Beautiful Stories of Apple api , of Bayard, and re-edited in albums and pocket, has sold more than 200,000 copies. In the integral, there are nine stories in the family: the back-to-school, Christmas, winter sports, mother’s day, holidays at Grandma Pig or the sea. Mary Pig must manage these small brothers, Charles pig and baby pig, always ready to do silly things. And small and great feasting.

From 3 years, 296 pages, 24, 80 euros

For fans of animals wacky and beautiful songs: The School’s Fables, (editions, awakening & discovery)

show in Paris from 27 February to 4 may 2019. With Thomas Seed, Hanna and David Lewis. The school’s fables

In the class of Miss Feather, we laugh, we sing and we dance. There is a wolf shy, and in love, a sparrow who wants to become an eagle, a fly, a lion-hearted, a flying fish. The School of the Fables is full of animals wacky.

Behind this project, Thomas Seed, composer and guitarist, has assembled quite a team of performers: Jean-Louis Aubert, Joyce Jonathan, Valentin Marceau, Hanna, Rose, Doc, Gynecologist, Benoît Dorémus, Bear, Axel Bauer, Willow, Albin de la Simone and Marc Aymon. They have given life to the texts of Christian Life and everyone can relate to.

For the February break from February 27 and each Saturday until may 4,, l ‘School of the Fables will be on the scene of Theatre of the Work in Paris. Previous concerts have been given with success to the European. The children knew the songs by heart, brought with a sense of humor and good mood by Thomas Seed-in-chief of the troop and a party of the singers on stage. An excellent CD to introduce them to your children for Christmas and to listen to on the way to vacation.

ages 3 and up, 52 pages with CD 16,90 €