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THE BARNYARD NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS by Beth Terrill

THE BARNYARD NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS

By Beth Terrill (Author) , Greg Newbold (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Oct. 23rd, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-375-83682-4
Publisher: Random House

Santa recruits a new transportation team in this farm-themed parody of Clement C. Moore’s Christmas classic. When his reindeer are unable to complete their round of deliveries on Christmas Eve, Santa stops in at a nearby farm to ask for help. Residing at this particular farm are eight animals who have trouble getting along, plus an intelligent mouse named Pip who has already written his letter to Santa. Pip has the bright idea to outfit the animals with helium-balloon harnesses, and by working together they pull the sleigh and save the day. Terrill does a creditable job of adapting the familiar poem to her new setting, although the logistics of the intermediate verses get a bit complicated with falling toys and popping balloons. In a thoughtful concluding page, the little mouse’s letter to Santa is shown, asking only for peace in the barnyard. The illustrations are infused with starlight and moonlight reflecting on the snowy landscapes, showcasing a jolly Santa and comical, cartoon-style animals. Children who are familiar with Moore’s classic will enjoy the humor and rollicking language of this version as an introduction to comedic parody. (Picture book. 4-8)