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Buy a kid fantasy land 

When a child is given the gift of a book, he receives so much more than words on a page. A trip to a fantasy land, the chance to get to know a historical figure or learn how to do something new, even the ability to imagine himself in another time and place— are all part of the gift of a beloved book.

For a fun family tradition, try reading aloud a different holiday-themed book each day this month. Covington author and artist Jennifer Sierra decided to write and illustrate her own book when she couldn’t find a Kentucky Christmas book for her child. Merry Christmas, Y’all!, (For Good Media, $17.99) finds Santa

Jennifer Sierra Photo: Jimmy King

stopping at many of Kentucky’s landmarks to pick up items for his deliveries. From one end of the state to the other, Santa finds items such as gold from Fort Knox, candy from Rebecca Ruth and coal in Floyd County. The rhyming verse and realistic renderings of area attractions will ensure this book is a family favorite. Visit Sierra and purchase the book at

For older children, Warsaw author Daria Kelleher offers The Imp Bottle, (Diversion Press, $9.95), a story about 11-year-old Olivia, her new friends, Joe and Isabella, and a mysterious flea market find. Olivia, known as Livy, often tags along with her mother to the local flea market

Daria Kelleher

looking for treasures, hoping to find something as old as the city of Damascus. A curiously cool green bottle catches her eye, and when the seller offers it for only a quarter, Livy can’t resist. When strange things start to happen, including meeting Joe and Isabella, the trio knows they must break the secret of the bottle and its magic…before it breaks them.

Kelleher writes stories she would have read as a child, stories that involve adventure and a change in the characters’ world view. Her love of adventure carried forward into adulthood when she served as one of the first women boat skippers in the Coast Guard. Learn more about her and follow Livy’s blog at

Now in the words of a Kentucky Santa, “Merry Christmas, y’all!”



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