A simple eight-page story with heavy, cardboard pages describes friendly forest animals working together to prepare a Christmas Eve feast for a mystery guest, with an Advent-calendar feature on the final pages.
There really isn’t any question of the mystery guest’s identity, as Santa is depicted on the padded front cover arriving with his sleigh pulled by a single reindeer. This cover is augmented with glittery sparkles to indicate moonlight shining on the snow under a tree being decorated by the cooperative animals. The slight, pretty much nonexistent story shows the animals dancing in the snow, gathering food and decorations, and bringing musical instruments and wrapped packages for the impending celebration. The final spread depicts all the animals and Santa gathered around the decorated tree with the feast and presents spread out in the snow. This spread is also an Advent calendar, with 24 flaps to open during the month of December. The pictures under the flaps are traditional items from the season, but they are not coordinated with the relevant portion of the illustration. For example, the flap on Santa’s head opens to reveal a sprig of holly.
Sweet and cheerful, but successful neither as a book nor as an Advent calendar. (Picture book. 3-6)