I know, it’s Monday. I do reviews on Friday. Shh…. Be vewy vewy quiet. I am studying!
Also, I saw that this book I’d been asked to review is free as an ebook today, so I thought I’d jump on it and give my readers the chance to pick up a very sweet collection of children’s stories, perfect for reading aloud while sitting by the Christmas tree.
The Best of Twisty Christmas came to my attention through Dave Freer, and he has a story in this collection, called How to Train a Princess. In his usual subversive sense of humor, it is likely not at all what you’d expect it to be, and I have a feeling little girls will love it. I’m just sad mine are probably too old. I’ll try it on my 12 yo, she might get into it.
The other stories are mostly short enough to be comfortable bedtime read-alouds, although as they are from the Land downunder (specifically New Zealand) there were a few terms I saw that will need explaining to the younger set. I know that just adds to the exoticism of the stories, and it’s always fun to learn new slang (anyone else remember when ‘brilliant’ became the rage of the tween set?).
As with any collection, quality is uneven. The book starts out strong, with cats, Dave Freer’s princess, and then falters with the too-twee-for-words BFF. But I had a good chuckle over the monsters under the bed and their encounter with Santa, in the story The Red Giant by Peter Friend, and I think you will, too.
The New Zealand version of the Natal Story is sweet and simple, and well told. If you want to flip ahead, it’s Kiwi Christmas by Joy Cowley. Further ahead, there’s the silly story of Candy Cane, the elf who was too tall, by Charlotte Kieft. There’s even a science fiction – of sorts – tale in Christmas in Space (also by Peter Friend).
But enough of this. I think you should pick up a copy and discover all it’s little delights on your own, with a favorite small person on your knee to enjoy them, too.
(was that a very small dragon sneeze under the tree? I’d better check… back later…)