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WHO’LL PULL SANTA’S SLEIGH TONIGHT? by Laura Rader

WHO’LL PULL SANTA’S SLEIGH TONIGHT?

By Laura Rader (Author) , Laura Rader (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2003
ISBN: 0-06-008088-4
Publisher: HarperCollins

The reindeer are all sick a-bed with terrible colds, and Santa and his elves are desperate for alternative transportation for Christmas Eve. They audition other animal teams to pull the sleigh (they flop) and then try building their own blimp (it pops). Mrs. Claus makes Santa some hot cocoa to help him feel better, and Mr. and Mrs. Claus then use this same simple remedy to cure the reindeer of their colds. This overly easy solution takes a lot of the fizz out of the story, but there are some funny moments prior to the sudden cure. Rader’s humorous watercolor illustrations use a loose style with lots of clever comments in hand-lettered speech balloons. She hides lots of humor for sharp-eyed readers: Santa’s dog and cat (sometimes with strapped-on antlers) take part throughout the story, and clever product names and book titles add to the humor. A recipe for “Santa’s Special Hot Cocoa” is included on the final page, and candy-cane–striped endpapers add a peppy touch. (Picture book. 4-8)