February 24, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

December Holiday Books: October 2012

Get the latest SLJ reviews every month, subscribe today and save up to 35%.

December Holiday Book Covers

BARRETT , Judi. Santa from Cincinnati: How a Little Boy Named Santa Grew Up to Become the Real Thing. illus. by Kevin Hawkes. 48p. CIP. S & S/Atheneum. Oct. 2012. Tr $16.99. ISBN 978-1-4424-2993-2; ebook $12.99. ISBN 978-1-4424-2994-9. LC 2011050810.
Gr 1-3–Barrett explains Santa’s origins in the form of a personal memoir, complete with appealing scrapbook-style “photo” layouts. It’s no surprise that Santa was jolly from birth, always loved cookies, and uttered “ho, ho, ho” as his first words. But who knew that his dad made toys in a basement workshop and that the annual toy distribution was a way to declutter the house? Actually, Santa’s life was more normal than one might guess. He played baseball, joined a rock band, held various part-time jobs, learned to drive, and even attended the high school prom. It was in college, where he met the future Mrs. Claus, as well as his future employees, the elves, that his career destiny solidified. His thriving enterprise continues to this day, and, though he’s a bit older and rounder, he keeps up with the trends. Kids needn’t fear any missed deliveries because Santa’s sleigh is now jet-propelled and equipped with a GPS! Clever and original, the story is made even more appealing by the dynamic acrylic paintings. Hawkes is a master of at rendering expressive faces and humorous details. A surefire hit for holiday storytimes.–Linda Israelson, Los Angeles Public Library

BOYNTON , Sandra. Christmas Parade. illus. by author. 32p. S & S/Little Simon. Oct. 2012. Tr $14.99. ISBN 978-1-4424-6813-9.
PreS-Gr 2–Boynton presents a wild and woolly parade of creatures, all performing for a bunny-slipper-shod piggy. All the usual suspects are there: chickens with bassoons, piggies with balloons, a plethora of drumming hippos, Santa (as portrayed by a trumpet-wielding rhino), and much, much more. They march to a lively beat, straight to the little piggy’s house to wish him Merry Christmas. Hand out the musical instruments, line up the kids, and get ready for a noisy holiday celebration! A fabulously fun addition.–Mara Alpert, Los Angeles Public Library

The following titles are reviewed in the October 1 print issue. Visit Book Verdict for the full reviews.

ALKO , Selina. Daddy Christmas and Hanukkah Mama. illus. by author. 32p. CIP. Knopf. Oct. 2012. Tr $16.99. ISBN 978-0-375-86093-5; PLB $19.99. ISBN 978-0-375-96093-2. LC 2011019230.

BATES , Marni. Decked with Holly. 250p. Kensington/KTeen. Oct. 2012. pap. $9.95. ISBN 978-0-7582-7485-4.

BECKHAM , Andrew. The Lost Christmas Gift. illus. by author. 40p. CIP. Princeton Architectural Pr. Oct. 2012. Tr $29.95. ISBN 978-1-61689-102-2. LC 2012008798.

BENNETT , Elizabeth. It’s Holiday Time! illus. by Gladys Baccala. 20p. Tiger Tales. 2012. BD $8.95. ISBN 978-1-58925-640-8.

BIEDRZYCKI , David. Santa Retires. illus. by author. 32p. CIP. Charlesbridge. 2012. RTE $16.95. ISBN 978-1-58089-293-3; pap. $7.95. ISBN 978-1-58089-294-0; ebook $6.99. ISBN 978-1-60734-459-9. LC 2011025705.

BLACK , Birdie. Just Right for Christmas. illus. by Rosalind Beardshaw. 32p. Candlewick/Nosy Crow. 2012. RTE $15.99. ISBN 978-0-7636-61748.

BRYAN , Ashley. Who Built the Stable?: A Nativity Poem. illus. by author. 40p. CIP. S & S/Atheneum. Oct. 2012. Tr $16.99. ISBN 978-1-4424-0934-7. LC 2012010647.

DEPAOLA , Tomie. The Birds of Bethlehem. illus. by author. 40p. Penguin/Nancy Paulsen Bks. Oct. 2012. RTE $16.99. ISBN 978-0-399-25780-3.

DHOM , Christel. The Advent Craft and Activity Book: Stories, Crafts, Recipes and Poems for the Christmas Season. tr. from German. photos by author & Ramona Lamb-Klinkenberg. 144p. diags. further reading. illus. index. websites. Floris. Oct. 2012. pap. $19.95. ISBN 978-0-8631-5912-1.

DICKENS , Charles. A Christmas Carol: The Night That Changed the Life of Eliza Scrooge. adapted by Rod Espinosa. illus. by adapter. 100p. Dark Horse. Oct. 2012. Tr $19.99. ISBN 978-1-59582-991-7.

DICKENS , Charles. Quentin Blake’s A Christmas Carol . illus. by Quentin Blake. 150p. photos. Pavilion. Oct. 2012. Tr $16.99. ISBN 978-1-84365-165-9.

EMMETT , Jonathan. The Santa Trap. illus. by Poly Bernatene. 32p. CIP. Peachtree. Oct. 2012. Tr $15.95. ISBN 978-1-56145-670-3. LC 2012004036.

FORRESTER , Margaret. Mac’s Christmas Star. illus. by Sandra Klaassen. 32p. Floris. 2012. pap. $11.99. ISBN 978-086315-842-1.

FRENCH , Jackie. Christmas Wombat. illus. by Bruce Whatley. 32p. Clarion. Oct. 2012. RTE $16.99. ISBN 978-0-547-86872-1.

THE FRIENDLY BEASTS: AN OLD ENGLISH CHRISTMAS CAROL. illus. by Anna Vojtech. 32p. score. w/CD. CIP. Zonderkidz. Oct. 2012. Tr $16.99. ISBN 978-0-310-72012-6. LC 2010018739.

GOODINGS , Christina. Baby’s First Christmas. illus. by Stephen Barker. 12p. Lion UK. Oct. 2012. BD $6.99. ISBN 978-0-7459-6256-6.

GRONER , Judye & Madeline Wikler. Maccabee Meals: Food and Fun for Hanukkah. illus. by Ursula Roma. 64p. index. CIP. Kar-Ben. 2012. pap. $8.95. ISBN 978-0-7613-5144-3; ebook $6.95. ISBN 978-1-4677-0060-3. LC 2011029020.

HALE, Bruce. Santa on the Loose!: A Seek and Solve Mystery! illus. by Dave Garbot. 32p. HarperCollins/Harper. Oct. 2012. Tr $7.99. ISBN 978-0-06-202262-2. LC 2011935006.

HALL , Kirsten. Christmas Magic. illus. by Simon Mendez. 24p. Sterling. Oct. 2012. Tr $14.95. ISBN 978-1-4027-7075-3.

HOPKINS, Lee Bennett. Mary’s Song. illus. by Stephen Alcorn. 32p. CIP. Eerdmans. 2012. RTE $17.00. ISBN 978-0-8028-5397-4. LC 2011035890.

HYDE , Heidi Smith. Emanuel and the Hanukkah Rescue. illus. by Jamel Akib. 32p. CIP. Kar-Ben. 2012. pap. $7.95. ISBN 978-0-7613-6627-0; Tr $17.95. ISBN 978-0-7613-6625-6; ebook $13.95. ISBN 978-1-4677-0059-7. LC 2011029014.

JAY , Alison. Christmastime. illus. by author. 32p. Dial. Nov. 2012. RTE $16.99. ISBN 978-0-8037-3804-1.

KEANE , Michael. The Night Santa Got Lost: How NORAD Saved Christmas. illus. by Michael Garland. 28p. Regnery Publishing. Oct. 2012. Tr $14.95. ISBN 978-1-59698-810-1.

KELLEHER, Kathie. The Night Before Christmas, Deep Under the Sea. illus. by Dan Andreasen. 32p. CIP. Holiday House. Oct. 2012. RTE $16.95. ISBN 978-0-8234-2336-1. LC 2011037067.

LANGEN , Annette. Our Very Own Christmas. tr. from German by Nina Maria Wieser. illus. by Marije Tolman. 32p. NorthSouth. Oct. 2012. Tr $17.95. ISBN 978-0-7358-4088-1.

LITWIN , Eric. Pete the Cat Saves Christmas. illus. by James Dean. 40p. CIP. HarperCollins/Harper. Oct. 2012. Tr $17.99. ISBN 978-0-06-211062-6; PLB $18.89. ISBN 978-0-06-211063-3. LC 2011052408.

MATTESON , George & Adele Ursone. The Christmas Tugboat: How the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Came to New York City. illus. by James E. Ransome. 48p. CIP. Clarion. Nov. 2012. RTE $17.99. ISBN 978-0-618-99215-7. LC 2011041795.

MEYER , Emily Flaschner. Happy Hanukkah, Curious George. illus. by Mary O’Keefe Young. 14p. Houghton Harcourt.2012. BD $7.99. ISBN 978-0-547-75731-5.

MOORE , Clement C. Twas the Night Before Christmas. illus. by Elena Almazova. 32p. CIP. Grafton and Scratch. 2012. RTE $16.95. ISBN 978-0-9879023-0-6.

NORMAN, Kim. The Great Christmas Crisis. illus. by Jannie Ho. 24p. Sterling. Oct. 2012. Tr $14.95. ISBN 978-1-4027-8632-7.

OROZCO, José-Luis. Pancho Claus. illus. by Ashley Wolff. 32p. glossary. Dial. Oct. 2012. RTE $16.99. ISBN 978-0-8037-3756-3.

PATRICELLI , Leslie. Fa La La. illus. by author. 26p. Candlewick. 2012. BD $6.99. ISBN 978-0-7636-3247-2.

PEPPA PIG AND THE LOST CHRISTMAS LIST. 32p. illus. Candlewick. 2012. RTE $12.99. ISBN 978-0-7636-6276-9.

PLATT , Randall. Liberty’s Christmas. 184p. CIP. glossary. Texas Tech Univ. Pr. 2012. Tr $19.95. ISBN 978-0-89672-766-3. LC 2012014648.

ROCK, Lois. My Very Little Christmas Story. illus. by Alex Ayliffe. 12p. Lion UK. Dec. 2012. BD $4.99. ISBN 978-0-7459-6257-3.

ROGELL , Amy. Holiday Jump!: A Christmas Story & Song. illus. by Monika Suska. 18p. Palm Kids. 2012. BD $7.95. ISBN 978-1-60727-727-9.

SANDERS , Rob. Cowboy Christmas. illus. by John Manders. 32p. CIP. Random/Golden Bks. 2012. Tr $10.99. ISBN 978-0-375-86985-3; PLB $13.99. ISBN 978-0-375-96985-0; ebook $9.99. ISBN 978-0-375-98122-7. LC 2011938519.

SCHICK-PIERCE , Susie, Jeannie Schick-Jacobowitz, & Muffin Drake-Policastro. A Bit of Applause for Mrs. Claus. illus. by Wendy Wallin Malinow. 32p. Sourcebooks/Jabberwocky. 2012. Tr $15.99. ISBN 978-1-4022-7085-7.

SHEA, Bob. Dinosaur vs. Santa. illus. by author. 40p. Hyperion/Disney. 2012. RTE $15.99. ISBN 978-1-4231-6806-5. LC 2011051350.

SILVANO , Wendi J. Turkey Claus. illus. by Lee Harper. 32p. CIP. Amazon. Nov. 2012. RTE $16.99. ISBN 978-0-7614-6239-2; ebook $7.99. ISBN 978-0-7614-6240-8. LC 2011034874.

SMALLMAN , Steve. Puppy’s First Christmas: A Soft-to-Touch Book. illus. by Alison Edgson. 26p. CIP. Good Books. 2012. Tr $16.99. ISBN 978-1-56148-767-7. LC 201000183.

SMALLMAN , Steve. Santa Is Coming to New York. illus. by Robert Dunn. 32p. Sourcebooks/Jabberwocky. Oct. 2012. Tr $9.99. ISBN 978-1-4022-7503-6.

SMITH , Brendan Powell. The Christmas Story: The Brick Bible for Kids. illus. by author. 32p. Sky Pony. Nov. 2012. Tr $12.95. ISBN 978-1-62087-173-7.

SPINELLI , Eileen. Together at Christmas. illus. by Bin Lee. 24p. CIP. Albert Whitman. 2012. Tr $15.99. ISBN 978-0-8075-8010-3. LC 2011036075.

STURM , James, Andrew Arnold, & Alexis Frederick-Frost. Adventures in Cartooning: Christmas Special! illus. by authors. 59p. (Adventures in Cartooning Series). First Second. 2012. pap. $9.99. ISBN 978-1-59643-730-2.

TOLLEY , Diane Stringam. Kris Kringle’s Magic. 166p. Cedar Fort. Oct. 2012. Tr $14.99. ISBN 978-1-4621-1105-3.

UNDERWOOD , Deborah. The Christmas Quiet Book. illus. by Renata Liwska. 32p. Houghton Harcourt. Nov. 2012. RTE $12.99. ISBN 978-0-547-55863-9.

VAINIO , Pirkko. Tom the Christmas Elf. tr. from German by Kristy Koth. illus. by author. 32p. NorthSouth. Oct. 2012. Tr $17.95. ISBN 978-0-7358-4089-8.

WATT , Mélanie. Scaredy Squirrel Prepares for Christmas. illus. by author. 80p. Kids Can. Oct. 2012. RTE $17.95. ISBN 978-1-55453-469-2.

WHELAN , Gloria. Smudge and the Book of Mistakes: A Christmas Story. illus. by Stephen Costanza. 48p. CIP. Sleeping Bear. 2012. Tr $17.95. ISBN 978-1-58536-483-1. LC 2012007576.

YOLEN , Jane. How Do Dinosaurs Say Happy Chanukah? illus. by Mark Teague. 40p. Scholastic/Blue Sky Press. 2012. RTE $16.99. ISBN 978-0-545-41677-1.

YOLEN , Jane. How Do Dinosaurs Say Merry Christmas? illus. by Mark Teague. 40p. Scholastic/Blue Sky Press. 2012. RTE $16.99. ISBN 978-0-545-41678-8.

Diversity and Cultural Competency Training: Collections & RA

Do you want to ensure that your library’s collections are diverse, equitable, inclusive, and well-read?

Do you want to become a more culturally literate librarian and a more effective advocate for your community?

We've developed a foundational online course—with live sessions on February 28 & March 14—that will explore key concepts essential to cultivating and promoting inclusive and equitable collections.


  1. […] School Library Journal – December Holiday Books […]