It is Christmas Eve and young Noah is excited and ready for bed so that Santa can come while he’s asleep, but he wants his favorite stuffed animal, an elephant named Fanfan, but Fanfan is missing! What Noah doesn’t know is that Fanfan has snuck out of the house to join the other soft toys from around the world to visit with Santa in order to tell him what their child wants most of all.
Will Fanfan get to the North Pole in time and tell Santa what Noah wants most of all? Will Fanfan make it back home to celebrate Christmas?
This is a cute little picture book with a Christmas theme. And with the stress and hubbub that might exist in a household around Christmastime this book might just help a child who can’t find their favorite toy (“it’s not missing, it’s gone to tell Santa want you want”).
The book also answers another questions that might come up from time to time … why doesn’t Santa bring a baby sister or baby brother when that’s what a child wants the most?
That’s a great question and nicely answered but the question came out of nowhere – or, rather, it isn’t part of the story, really. It’s a question one of the other stuffed animals asks. But on my first reading of the book I had to go back to the beginning to see if I was missing something. Was Noah wanting a baby brother or sister right from the start? Nope. That’s just a little something extra thrown in. But for a 32 page book it seems too much when it isn’t tied to the story.
The art is soft and cute. A big part of any picture book is whether or not the art work lends itself to being studied by a child while a parents reads the words. In general, I think yes with this book.
But the book is just a little bit wanting. The story is almost too simple, with a big moment tossed in that isn’t even part of the story, and then we’re done.
In my house, this is the sort of book that would get purchased, read to the children in the weeks before Christmas, but probably not one of the books that the kids themselves would request to have read to them.
Looking for a good book? The Toys’ Christmas by Claire Clément and Geneviève Godbout is a cute Christmas story … but not likely to be requested for multiple readings by the children in your family.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Edelweiss, in exchange for an honest review.
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The Toys’ Christmas
author: Claire Clément
artist: Geneviève Godbout
publisher: Frances Lincoln Children’s Books
hardcover, 32 pages