JINGLE BOY by Kieran Scott


Age Range: 14 & up
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A familiar story arc—best Christmas ever, worst Christmas ever, best Christmas ever—gets a shallow incarnation. Paul’s Christmas season begins with “the most beautiful, sweet, perfect girl in school” on his arm and a promised fancy red car from his parents. When his beloved old Santa hat gets lost, however, everything turns sour. His father is electrocuted hanging Christmas lights, his mother is fired, and his girlfriend breaks up with him in favor of the mall Santa. Christmas is not merely a metaphor here: every page is stocking-stuffed with details. Self-pitying and bitter, more concerned with what he’s lost than with his hospitalized father, Paul joins the Anti-Christmas Underground. His redemption at the end is surprisingly Santa-dependent. Disappointingly, Scott misses the chance to acknowledge any real reasons why Christmas could ever be disliked, and fails to separate the meaningful aspects of Christmas from the shallow. (Fiction. YA)

Pub Date: Sept. 9th, 2003
ISBN: 0-385-73113-2
Page count: 208pp
Publisher: Delacorte
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 2003


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