CM Archive
CM Archive Book Review line

Toronto, Clarke, Irwin, c1982.
156pp, paper, $8.95.
ISBN 0-7720-1392-6.

Grades 5 and up.
Reviewed by Anne Locatelli.

Volume 11 Number 2.
1983 March.

If you are looking for a book that recaptures the spirit of an old-fashioned Canadian Christmas, this anthology is for you. The selections are grouped according to a particular theme in each one of the five chapters. The short stories and essays are all by well known authors such as Harry Boyle, Emily Carr, Stephen Lea-cock, Earle Birney. Each chapter contains approximately half a dozen titles. "A Child's Christmas" captures the magic of the season as seen through the eyes of children; "Winter Rejoicing" takes the reader on an enchanted journey, from B.C. with Eric Collier, to the Arctic with Duncan Pride, on to a midnight mass in Quebec with E.J. Massicotte. In "Tinsel and Turkey," we find, amid glittering poems, an excerpt from a 1939 report on the Christmas tree industry in Canada followed by a whole section of favourite Christmas recipes, complete with metric conversions. Even the Scrooge-like characters are featured in six short stories in "Christmas Critics." Finally "Stories for Christmas" offers six short stories with appeal for every lover of the Christmas festivities. The book itself looks like a wrapped up Christmas package, with a big red bow pictured on the front cover. Though not elegant, in its paperback format and with no illustrations, it is attractive and comprehensive; it groups together the ingredients for a joyful, warm holiday season: stories, recipes, customs, poetry, and laughter. A perfect book to read aloud with children and a nostalgic reminder of the Christmases of long ago.

Anne Locatelli, Elliot Lake S. S., Elliot Lake, ON.
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