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The Christmas Promise Hardcover – November 1, 2001

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Sky, $15.95 (40p) ISBN 0-590-98451-9Like The Shine Man, Bartoletti's (No Man's Land) poignant story is also set during the Depression. "Do hoboes have Christmas?" a girl asks her down-and-out father, after weeks spent hopping freight trains. "They figure out a way," he tells her. The girl is taken in by a kindly woman while her father continues on his search for work, and the two reunite just in time for Christmas. Christiana's gloriously haunting, dreamy artwork captures all the pathos of this affecting tale. Ages 4-up.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Gr 2-4-Set sometime during the Great Depression, this story begins when a young girl and her father become homeless. Out of a job and money, they hop trains, riding from town to town, searching for "someplace good." The hardships of hobo life are conveyed both in Bartoletti's text and in Christiana's stylized gray- and brown-toned illustrations. Finally the father must leave his daughter with a kind woman who will care for her while he continues his search for work. The young girl's hopes and prayers for her Poppa are fulfilled on the last page as readers see him returning to her with packages on Christmas Eve. Although many young children have little awareness of the 1930s, this story will speak both to the homeless children of the 21st century and to those children of plenty, who might come to understand the pain of those without. A prefatory note describes the unique hobo communication system involving chalk figures depicted on the endpapers. Except for the textual references, these curious symbols do not appear in the story itself. A very different, and definitely not sugarcoated, Christmas tale.-G. C.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Lexile Measure: 470L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Blue Sky Press; English Language edition (November 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0590984519
  • ISBN-13: 978-0590984515
  • Product Dimensions: 12.3 x 9.4 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,405,578 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Susan Campbell Bartoletti is the award-winning author of several books for young readers, including Black Potatoes: The Story of the Great Irish Famine, 1845-1850, winner of the Robert F. Sibert Medal. She lives in Moscow, Pennsylvania. Annika Maria Nelson studied printmaking at the University of Vienna in Austria and at the University of California at Santa Cruz. She lives in Southern California.

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on December 15, 2001
Format: Hardcover
In Susan Bartoletti's The Christmas Promise, a young girl and her poor father have little to share on Christmas, but they have their love and trust, even when the authorities threaten them for their wayward lifestyle. David Christiana's captivating and sensitive drawings showcase this very fine story of family Christmas spirit.
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