How Does Santa Go Down the Chimney?

Candlewick. Sept. 2023. 32p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781536223767.
PreS-Gr 2–Barnett and Klassen confront one of the many mysteries of Christmas Eve. Beginning with an earnest “How does he do it? How does it work?” an anonymous narrator proceeds to pose a series of questions and hypotheses about the possibilities of Santa’s descent into people’s houses. Does Santa shrink or stretch, pour himself through the faucet, or find a key if there is no chimney? When inside, does he have to wash his sooty suit or use night vision goggles if the lights are off? One thing seems to be certain: “Santa goes up the chimney the same way he comes down.” Barnett’s tone perfectly captures a child’s endless stream of imaginative conjectures, while Klassen’s droll idiosyncratic graphite and ink illustrations bring out the humor full force.
VERDICT Another hilarious hit that will be a welcome addition to the lighter side of Christmas collections.

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