You see Julian has reached that special age when the wide eyed wonder of innocence is replaced by skepticism. Too many questions without answers; impossible feats accomplished with no proof as to how they were done. In short... ~whispers~ he doesn't really think there is a Santa Claus any more but is willing to pretend that he does in order to get the big present he has requested. Christmas morning comes and what a surprise, he gets what he asked for...okay no surprise to him as he also told his parents what he wanted, but hang on a minute. There's another package under the tree and this one everyone is surprised to see. Just who left this extra gift is as much a mystery as why it is what it is, making Julian second guess his new found belief or rather lack of belief, but this present will lead to many a revelation as well as one final gift from the man in red....
Once I caught wind of the ill feelings Julian was emitting, I wasn't quite sure where the tale was going to take things, but followed along nonetheless. To my surprise, his doubt is turned upside down with that unexpected gift and with it he finds a part of that childlike wonder he had been so ready to say goodbye to. By books end, his heart is ready to believe as he pins all his hopes on keeping that one stray toy that found its way to him one Christmas night ago. No worries...Santa knows who's been naughty or nice, but he also knows who needs a dose Christmas magic the most.
Recommended reading for children of all ages...and adults too. The younger set will enjoy following Julian along through the illustrations that adorn each page, wondering at the presents he receives and dreaming up wish lists of their own. Those around Julian's age and also filled with that unexpected doubt will benefit from the reinforcement of the magic of the season, discovering the value of the simple things. Adult readers...well honestly I'd say the opportunity to contemplate this one. It's a short and simple story but one that really makes you think, I know I certainly did.
Stay tuned for even more fun today as we count down the hours til Christmas Day with a book review or two to make the season that much brighter.
Until next time...happy holidays...and happy reading!