Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Best Christmas Novel Ever
Are you searching the state for the coveted Invention of Hugo Cabret? Unlike other bookstores, we still have it in stock! Give us a call (617-566-6667) or stop on by. Hurry; once they are gone, they're gone.
And now, let me introduce you to the best Christmas book ever. It's not a picturebook, like many Christmas books are; rather, it is a novel -- great for ages 6 and up.
"The first pageant rehearsal was usually about as much fun as a three-hour ride on the school bus, and just as noisy and crowded. This rehearsal, though, was different. Everybody shut up and settled down right away, for fear of missing something awful that the Herdmans might do."
Recognize this excerpt yet? It is Barbara Robinson's The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. A holdiay classic since 1972.
The Herdmans are the bullies of all bullies! So, what are they doing at the first Christmas pageant practice at the local church? (A Christmas pagaent that is always the same play year after year -- same angels, same shepherds, same everything.) And, what will the Herdmans do first? Beat everyone up before the performance, burn the church down, or steal from the offering plate again? Even though this book focuses on the nativity scene (you know, Mary, Joseph, and the newly born Jesus in Bethlehem), it is in no way overly-religious. I'll just say that it was first read to me out loud in second grade at a very public elementary school. So whether you even think about any "religious" aspects of this holiday or not, this book will help you see the nativity scene in a whole new way.
Not convinced yet? Read children's literature scholar Anita Silvey's entry in her Children's Book Almanac. Or, you be the judge and read it for yourself. (Or, if you can get a hold of the out-of-print audio, it is a great recording as well.)