There is more snow and the temperature has dropped. It is time to cozy on the couch and read –
Children of Christmas
By Cynthia Rylant
I know why this book made it into the Christmas selection. Cynthia Rylant wrote the popular (especially in my house) series about Henry and Mudge. As I recall, the Great Dane was Henry and the little boy was Mudge. They had lots of adventures and were great for the learning to read set.
This is actually not the book I would choose to read to children. The stories are a little more “adultish” and not really upbeat. There are six short stories in the book. The first is about a man that sells Christmas trees. He started selling Christmas trees because he moved from the town he grew up in after the death of his parents. He lives on a Christmas tree farm by himself and the only time he sees people is when they buy trees at Christmas time. He likes Christmas time because of all the visitors. Then he goes back to his solitary life. Not exactly a heartwarming Christmas tale. It does beat the story of the little girl whose mother is never home so she walks the streets at night. (Calling Children and Family Services, anyone?)
The book seems to be out of print so you won’t be able to add it to your Christmas list. (There are used copies available on Amazon.) The stories are well written but definitely not the upbeat side of Christmas. Perhaps one of the blubs from the back of the book says it all
“Most will be moved by the poignancy of these stories about the other side of Christmas.”
School Library Journal
Thanks for reading!