Friday, November 15, 2019

Review - If I Could Give You Christmas

If I Could Give You Christmas
by Lynn Plourde
illustrated by Jennifer L. Meyer
Date: 2019
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 32
Format: e-book
Source: library

Skating on a frozen pond, decorating the fanciest gingerbread house ever, re-reading a favorite story . . . these activities and more are brought to life through a variety of animal pairs. The tastes, smells, sights, and sounds of the holiday are evoked in universal scenes showing special moments being shared by parent and child. Adults will appreciate the theme of passing on traditions and the message that it doesn't take a lot of stuff to celebrate Christmas. Kids will enjoy the playful, loving scenes. Sharing this book could become a brand new family tradition!

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This is a sweet little book about the feelings of Christmas. Sights, sounds, and smells are evoked through the lovely illustrations of cute critters as they make preparations for the holiday. I don't know where this magical forest is, but I'd love to visit!

I was a bit taken aback by the very first illustration. A baby lynx is being held up by a parent to catch a snowflake on their tongue. Unfortunately, the illustrator decided to highlight the downward motion of the snowflake with what looks like smoke. Combined with the horizontal tongue jutting out of the lynx's mouth, it looked like it was smoking a cigarette! (I had to zoom in to see it properly.) It's just something to be aware of, in case your kids ask why the baby cat is smoking.

The rest of the pictures, though, are stunning. I don't know if I could pick a favourite. They're lovely. I will definitely be looking for other books illustrated by Meyer.

Overall, and in spite of the smoking lynx, I really enjoyed this one. It's a nice antidote to the commercialism of the holiday, and helps to highlight and recapture some of the Christmas magic from times past.

Quotable moment:

Premise: 4/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 4/5
Illustrations: 4/5
Originality: 4/5

Enjoyment: 4/5

Overall: 4 out of 5

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