HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: The Christmas Spirit Is Born!
Author: J. Perry Johnson
Illustrator: Lucy Walker
Publisher: Lanier Press, 2016
Language level: 1
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing and/or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing and/or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Recommended reading level: Ages 4-7
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Johnson, J. Perry. The Christmas Spirit Is Born! (published in 2016 by Lanier Press, % BookLogix Permission Department, 1264 Old Alpharetta Rd., Alpharetta, GA 30005). Aunt Allison is telling Annsley and Trey a story which she had heard from her Grandpa Luke who had learned it from Santa Claus himself. Clausville was a small village between two mountain ranges at the North Pole where the “Normal Folk,” the elves, and the reindeer dwelt. On a farm west of town lived Big Papa Claus, his wife Mama, and their son Little Santa. Big Papa said that Clausville would always be sunny and warm as long as everyone loved and cared for each other. Mainstreet is lined with shops and bakeries that smell like Grandma’s kitchen at Christmas, and elves, reindeer, and happy children play all day.
Then one day a group of men from the outside world led by Jacques Depeur came and sowed discontent among some of the Normal Folk. As many were preparing to leave with the outsiders, suddenly on Christmas Eve it began to grow cold and a huge snow storm hit. Big Papa started out for Clausville to deliver some presents to the inhabitants. What happened to him and the gifts? What did the Normal Folk decide to do? And what did Little Santa and the reindeer do to help? Just in time for the holidays, The Christmas Spirit Is Born!, which is Book 1 of the “Little Santa Claus Series,” is a cute, heartwarming story of how the Christmas spirit was born and, along with it, the one whom we now call Santa Claus.
Author J. Perry Johnson says, “The book is the untold story of Santa Claus’ childhood. If you ever wondered how reindeer learned to fly or how Santa Claus came to be, just come along and discover how presents magically appear under your Christmas tree….Everything you want to know about Santa’s family, and friends, and the North Pole can be found within the pages of The Christmas Spirit is Born.” He even includes “Granny’s Teacake Recipe” from the Clausville cookie store. With its emphasis on caring for others and having a giving spirit, I am convinced that kids and parents alike will find this book absolutely adorable and will be waiting eagerly for Book 2 of the series.