Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Picture Book Review: Very Christmas by Simone Mets

I received a free ecopy of this book from Netgalley and the author in exchange for an honest review. 

Title: Very Christmas
Author: Simone Mets
Illustrator: Jana Pivkova
Publisher: self published by author
Publication Date: October 19, 2015
Length: 27 pages
Format: ebook
Source: Netgalley

A very, very, very bad storm hits the North Pole. Santa's workshop is very, very, very badly damaged. Urgent! "Dear Santa" letters marked with a tiny note are returned to children, both naughty and nice. The richest man in the world flies to the rescue, but solutions simply don't work. He is stumped! Will Christmas wishes go undelivered for the first time ever? Or will someone unstumpable come up with an answer? 

My Thoughts:
When a bad storm hits the north pole, Santa and his elves return every child's 'Dear Santa' letter with an apology that Christmas might not happen this year. The children are very dismayed. When a local billionaire steps in to fix the problem but fails, one little girl comes up with the solution to save Christmas by giving her old toys to younger kids who had wished for them. She rallies the other children to do the same and soon the whole town is donating their toys. All except a boy named Rowdy who would rather receive more toys and not give his old ones away. 

This is a very wonderful Christmas story about the power of giving. One little girl comes up with the idea to save Christmas and it spreads like wildfire. Including the naughty boy who doesn't want to give anything really helped pull the story together and show that even if it's not something you really want to do, giving is an amazing thing to do that makes others happy and yourself in turn. 

Just as a little side note, I absolutely loved that the return apology letters from Santa's head elf were inclusive of all types of families, not just heterosexual ones. I love to see stories that embrace and normalize diversity. 

The book itself (the ebook form, anyway) is more text than anything but has brightly colored backgrounds with snowflakes and the children's hands. I do feel like this story would have had more effect with more illustrations. For that reason, I would recommend to older children who do not need pictures to imagine what is happening. Overall, this is a wonderful story with a great moral.

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