Once his older sister has spilled the beans by calling the department store Santa ""some man in a costume,"" Abner doesn't have to be a Sherlock Holmes to figure out the awful truth--there is no Santa. His best ploy is leaving a baloney and peanut butter sandwich for Santa's snack and then searching for the uneaten evidence the next day. But the biggest problem is how Abner and his buddy Henry will tell their parents what they know. Henry at first feels like ""a dummy"" but Abner figures out a graceful way to announce the news; he surprises his parents with their own present from Santa. The spirit is right, but timing will be crucial here--librarians might not want to be the bearers of bad news and kids who already know what Abner suspects will be above it all.