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An Orphan's Promise: A Christmas Story Hardcover – October 1, 2006

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Editorial Reviews


Beautiful books! Well written, and the illustrations are so in tune with your text! I enjoy reading to and working with children and look forward to grand kids some day. Your books will be on their reading list. --Lynn Johnston, creator of the comic strip For Better or For Worse

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Second Star Creations (October 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0972597751
  • ISBN-13: 978-0972597753
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 0.6 x 10.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,912,135 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Menard on November 18, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Dan Davis has done what few can do anymore: he has brought wonder and surprise to the tale of Santa. His original take on the centuries-old legend is a joy to read.

While the book is broken down into easily-digestible chapters for younger readers, it does not talk down to children. It is a compelling story for readers of all ages. My teenager picked it up one afternoon and read it through twice. The illustrations are delicate and enduring; they compliment, rather than overpower, the story.

While "An Orphan's Promise" is a great stand-alone book, I highly recommend its prequel, "The Blacksmith's Gift." I eagerly await the continuation of the story of Mr. and Mrs. Kloss.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Glyn E. Halsey on October 18, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I just received three copies of this book today for my youngest grandchildren. Before I gave it to them I read it myself and loved it. It's such a great story, well written and puts a different perspective on giving, loving and magic. I highly suggest buying Mr. Davis' first book "The Blacksmith's Gift" as well as "An Orphan's Promise". Illustrations are beautiful in both books. Orphan's Promise is about a little girl who goes to help Mr. Kloss be a carpenter but is told she can't because she isn't a boy. This book shows that 'yes, you can'. Well done and recommend both of Mr.Davis' books. Can't wait for the last one to be published in a year or so.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By J. Lyon Layden on April 16, 2007
Format: Hardcover
With the second installment of Second Star Creations' "Christmas Story" series, author Dan T. Davis and artist Christina E. Siravo unfold an intricately weaved carpet for the reader to walk upon. Using a myriad of techniques including inventive layouts, brilliant illustrations, rivetting prose, intriguing myth, and good old fashioned storytelling, the team has created a perfectly orchestrated children's book that should be a given under every Christmas tree. Even the changing moods and seasons of the tale are conveyed not only by the beautiful prose and artwork, but also with the coinciding colors and fades of each turned page. Further illuminating Davis's vision of the origins of Santa Kloss, the story also gives us a good background for his special reindeer and even for the Rudolf story.
In "An Orphan's Promise," a young orphan named Ruby is the main character, and Mr. Kloss takes a supporting role. Both of them are rich, evolving characters changed mightily by the stories end, but it is Ruby who undergoes the most profound change. She is also the person who the major themes, insights, and plots of the tale center around.
Davis does a remarkable job of holding the reader's attention and leading his audience through emotions in order to impart understanding of the message. Interspersed folklore of the Alvar (Norse forest elves) and Nissen (Scandinavian barn fairies) give depth and realism to the Santa legends, and by the end it's easy to believe even if you're an adult now who forgot all about ol' Santa Kloss long ago.
Perfect touches at the end of the book, like the Nissen adding Rudolf to the toy sleigh, the post-script poem for Ruby, and the traditional Norwegian folksong complete with musical notation, are even more reason why you'll find yourself enjoying this story again and again each Christmas.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Fred L. Warren on August 9, 2013
Format: Hardcover
In a tiny Norwegian village, a carpenter and his wife are leading a busy life, with houseful of apprentices. A young orphan girl appears at their door, asking to learn the carpentry trade. This is an unusual request in that day and age, but the carpenter reluctantly accepts her as a student. In the days to come, the girl will indeed learn to carve wood into beautiful things, but she'll also learn to trust and love again, and as Christmas approaches, the carpenter will rediscover a miracle he thought was lost beyond all hope.

This is the second volume in a trilogy of Christmas stories by Dan T. Davis: The Blacksmith's Gift : A Christmas Story, An Orphan's Promise : A Christmas Story, and A Carpenter's Legacy : A Christmas Story.

In these three stories, Davis offers a fresh perspective on Christmas, and given the plethora of books in this genre, that's a notable achievement. These tales feel as if they might have sprung from an anecdote someone's grandfather carried across the ocean from the old country and shared every so often at family gatherings, embroidering the tale bit by bit until it blossomed into a legend that transcended generations and was carefully passed down from parent to child. In a sea of Christmas stories that feel manufactured and trite, these books are, by contrast, genuine, warm, honest, and substantial.

It wouldn't be accurate to call these children's books. They're family books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Bard Jongleur on June 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Author Dan T. Davis follows up his award-winning Christmas story, A Blacksmith's Gift, with this heartfelt sequel about loss and healing. Yearning to become a carpenter's apprentice, Ruby leaves her orphanage in the hope that Mr. Kloss, the famous carpenter who brings toys each year to needy children in Norway, will take her in. At first, because she is a girl, he does not want to apprentice her, but Mrs. Kloss prevails, and soon, Ruby is working side-by-side with eight boys. Despite being teased, Ruby gradually becomes a vital part of the household. She accompanies Mr. Kloss when he goes to deliver toys. But after an unexpected setback, Mr. Kloss is left with one gift not given. Questioning if he should continue making and delivering toys, he thinks of returning to being an ordinary carpenter. And he wonders why Ruby won't let him get close; she is the only one that doesn't call him Papa. With Christ's Day approaching, everyone wonders if Papa will bring joy and deliver toys to orphans throughout the land. And whether Ruby will heal a promise broken long ago.

Children will enjoy the antics and family celebration in the story. And the wonderful watercolor illustrations will bring them back to the book, again and again.

As with the first book, Davis explores another piece of the Santa Claus legend, and offers a charming take on the traditional tale, with a twist. Filled with laughter and fun, An Orphan's Promise also grabs your emotions, as we feel Ruby's loss and loneliness at just the right moments. The story sneaks up on you, as several tales, artfully layered on each other, weave together in a beautiful and moving climax. An Orphan's Promise is a wonderful story to share at Yuletide, or throughout the year. It sings on its own, but keep the joy going, and get The Blacksmith's Gift, too.
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