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by Annette Langen & illustrated by Marije Tolman

Age Range: 4 - 6

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-7358-4088-1
Publisher: NorthSouth

An adventurous little girl and her younger brother act out the Nativity story with friendly animals in a snow-covered, mysterious land in this intriguing story originally published in Switzerland.

The girl, Kelly, and her brother, Franklin, set out from home with a sleigh full of wood pieces, pulled by a sheep. As Kelly and Franklin pretend they are Mary and Joseph traveling to Bethlehem, they move into a strange, snowy world with more animals gradually joining in as the story unfolds. The sleigh and wood magically transform into a stable, and the part of Baby Jesus is played by a white rabbit. Three adults in furry robes arrive at the stable, and though the trio is greeted as the Three Kings, they might also be Father Christmas and the children’s parents. They all leave together by sled and sleigh, heading for a brightly lit farm in the distance. The family’s home? The North Pole? Much in this story is open to interpretation, which will delight some young readers and confuse others. Watercolor and ink illustrations add to the mysterious atmosphere with tiny figures set against vast backgrounds of snow or skies glowing with special starlight.

With elements of magical realism, this story offers a creative, challenging exploration of a Christmas journey. (Picture book. 4-6)