A little girl named Claudine tries to misbehave just before Christmas so that Santa won’t come into her house to deliver presents on Christmas Eve.
Claudine doesn’t like the idea of Santa watching her and determining if she is naughty or nice. She also doesn’t “want Santa to break into her home.” So she decides to act up in the days before Christmas so that Santa will skip her house, although her older sister claims he will still come since she is well-behaved. Claudine’s minor mischief includes squirting toothpaste all over the bathroom, tracking pink paint footprints on the floor, and blowing her nose on her mother’s skirt. On Christmas morning there are no presents under the tree for either sister, but Claudine finds all the family’s presents on the front porch with a note from Santa. Claudine, her family, and Santa are white; some of the children waiting in line to see Santa are other ethnicities. The plot isn’t especially original, and it isn’t believable that a child of Claudine’s age (around 6) would want to forego Christmas presents rather than have Santa deliver them. Appealing illustrations have a retro, 1960s vibe with skirts on the female characters and a record player in Claudine’s room. The composition of the illustrations and the overall design are attractive and polished.
Entertaining and amusing, if not particularly groundbreaking. (Picture book. 3-6)