Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Matilda Saves Santa Claus

Matilda Saves Santa Claus by Alex Field, illustrated by Sophie Norsa (New Frontier Publishing)
HB RRP $24.95
ISBN 9781921928604
Reviewed by Vicki Stanton

Matilda Saves Santa Claus is a simple Christmas story for preschoolers. Matilda Mouse is poor but leaves the last of her milk and her only mince pie for Santa. What she really desires is a Christmas tree. When she ventures into the forest to search for one, she finds Santa's sleigh trapped in vines. Matilda gnaws and gnaws through the vines until Santa is free to continue his journey.

Matilda returns home exhausted and without a tree but when she wakes in the morning , she discovers not only a beautiful tree in her house but presents galore and a thank you note from Santa.

Young children will enjoy this Christmas story with its simple message of the value of helping others. The plot is uncomplicated and the text sparse making this a book that emerging readers could tackle themselves. The book is well presented with its hard cover and illustrated endpapers and Sophie Norsa's vivid pictures reflect the text and fill the pages with colour and life. I particularly like the double spread when Rudolph and Matilda first meet. Most importantly, the thought that a creature as small as a mouse can save Christmas is a concept that will delight all young readers.

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