There are four children’s books out this season about the Yule lads, sure to help you get into the holiday spirit.
First, there is Christmas is Coming, an English translation of the Christmas classic, Jólin koma, by beloved poet Jóhannes úr Kötlum (1899-1972), with original illustrations by Tryggvi Magnússon. Poet Hallberg Hallmundarson (1930-2011) translated the poems. This book describes in rhyme and with humor the thirteen Yule lads, their adventures and mischievous behavior, as well as their parents, Grýla and Leppalúði, and the Christmas cat.
Secondly, there is The Icelandic Yule Lads, Illustrated and Alive, by Ken Barr, former KISS and Alice Cooper roadie, illustrated by Danya Esposito. This book, too, tells the story of the Yule lads in rhyme.
The third book is An Icelandic Winter’s Tale: Stúfur and the Snowman, written and illustrated by Brian Pilkington. Brian was born in England, but has lived in Iceland for a long time and published numerous children’s books about Icelandic folklore. This book is about the smallest of the Icelandic Yule lads, and is intended for the smallest of readers, 2-7 years old, or anyone who has ever built a snowman.
Finally, there is The Legend of the Icelandic Yule Lads by Heidi Herman. This is a modern story about the Yule lads, describing their road to discovery of the happiness gained from giving gifts, while taking a break from mischief.