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‘Very Christmas’ Book Review

'Very Christmas' Book Review

Before each holiday, my kids and I read piles of seasonal books. Christmas is the favorite holiday of the entire year in my house, and my daughter loves reading book after book about Christmas. When recently offered the chance to review a copy of Very Christmas written by Simone Mets and illustrated by MJ Lallo in exchange for my honest opinion, I eagerly accepted the opportunity to add a new holiday title to my home library. The 50-page paperback book currently costs $18.95 on Amazon and $5.99 for a digital version.

Author

Currently residing in Princeton, New Jersey with her husband and two shorthaired ginger tabbies, author Simone Mets has spent her life connecting with others and always has her eyes peeled for opportunities to give back. Her ingenuity has served her well in her professional life as an attorney and event producer. She is a passionate volunteer, a mentor, and an active member of SCBWI. Winner of the 2016 eLit gold for best holiday book. Very Christmas is her first book.

Synopsis

Neat and tidy Ava Buttons writes her Christmas letter to Santa every year on December 1. When everyone’s letters are returned a few days later, the entire world is stumped. An explanation eventually arrives from the North Pole: Santa’s workshop has been destroyed by a ferocious storm and Christmas must be cancelled. Not even the richest man in the world can save the holiday. Just when everyone seems to give up all hope, Ava and her friends discover a way to make Christmas wishes come true. Motivated by a desire to help others, Ava converts even her naughtiest friend, Rowdy Meyers, from an enthusiastic getter to a champion giver.

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Cover of 'Very Christmas' Inside Pages of 'Very Christmas'

Evaluation

At 50 pages long, Very Christmas is quite a long read. I recommend the book for readers in second through fourth grade. My kindergartener daughter, who reads at a first or second grade level, can read most of the text without much help. However, the length is a bit much for her in one sitting, so I recommend the book for slightly older readers.

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I really love the important message in Very Christmas: that giving is better than getting. I have been working with my daughter on realizing that Christmas is a season of giving, not getting. I love having a new book that reinforces this essential lesson. As the story begins, the children are concerned with not getting any presents from Santa. After a while, however, everyone comes together — even the most selfish little boy — to make Christmas a season of giving again.

My only desire for the book is more illustrations. Very Christmas is largely textual with a handful of small illustrations. Much of the text features different fonts, colors, and sizes. While not necessarily needing page after page of full-size illustrations, the story could benefit from a few more pictures here and there. Overall, however, my kids have enjoyed reading this new holiday book together.

Final Verdict

If you are searching for a book for the Christmas holiday that reinforces the idea that the season is for giving, not getting, definitely check out Very Christmas written by Simone Mets and illustrated by MJ Lallo. The 50-page book tells the story of the year that Santa’s workshop was destroyed by a ferocious storm and Christmas had to be cancelled. In the end, the unstumpable Ava Buttons and her friends discover a way to make Christmas wishes come true.

Purchase Very Christmas on Amazon via my affiliate link.

Image Credits

‘Very Christmas’ Book Review © 2016 Heather Johnson
Cover of ‘Very Christmas’ © 2016 Heather Johnson
Inside Pages of ‘Very Christmas’ © 2016 Heather Johnson

Written by Heather

Heather is a writer, librarian, linguist, wife, homemaker, homeschooler, and mother.

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