A COWBOY CHRISTMAS by Audrey Wood

A COWBOY CHRISTMAS

The Miracle at Lone Pine Ridge
by & illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 10
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KIRKUS REVIEW

This longer Christmas story is set in the old West on the small ranch of a widow named Della and her son, Evan. On Christmas Eve, they are waiting for the annual arrival of their storytelling cowboy friend, Cully, who collapses from illness and falls from his horse into the snow on a ridge overlooking the ranch. A bright shooting star leads Evan and his mother to Cully, who is successfully rescued and nursed back to health. Walking with Evan’s ma and some quality time with the family make it clear that the cowboy has changed and sure enough, he decides to quit the trail. It’s Evan who talks him out of moving to Mexico and points the way to marrying his ma and staying right there. While the plot is melodramatic and somewhat predictable, Woods tells the tale with a sure hand, just as Cully recounts his cowboy adventures to Della and Evan in front of the fireplace. Florczak’s (The Magic Fishbone, not reviewed, etc.) sumptuous full-page paintings add greatly to the overall effect, with varying perspectives and clever use of shadows. (One memorable illustration shows three shocked cowboys interrupted at their dinner of beans and coffee with the looming shadow of a bear falling across the page.) This super-sized volume has a thoughtful design with the text printed on ivory paper with a narrow rust border, adding an old-fashioned touch to a story that will be popular wherever young cowboys hang their hats. (Picture book. 5-10)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-689-82190-5
Page count: 48pp
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2001




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