A Christmas boy and dog story of the Austrian Tyrol of 1918. With food scarce, Rolf, the St. Bernard, adored by all the Spiel children, is to be butchered so their ailing, and unpleasant, father may have meat. Karl, the oldest, finally finds a way to save Rolf, though he has to sin to do it. But it is the hated English, the War over, who bring Rolf back, patch a family feud, and redeem their nation in these peasants' eyes. There's sentiment in the tale, but the picture of the village people, of an eleven year old's mental turmoil to balance right and wrong, of his level-headed friends, Maria and the priest, is clearcut and appealing. Special sale for the gift book section.