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I purchased the hardcover edition for my 2 year old daughter. The Illustrations are absoulutely beautiful. The only problem I have with it is that it is not the original poem by Moore. It has been censored, yes, censored. The 2 lines "The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth, And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath." have been removed! I understand that smoking is no longer a "PC" thing in this day and age, but when you are purchasing a classic poem, one you remember from your childhood, you expect to get the actual poem. I was disappointed that this fact had not been noted in the product description. I guess it's a little 1984ish to me, to start censoring a book and not inform the consumer.
"The Night Before Christmas," is Mr. Sabuda's pop-up version of Clement Clarke Moore's classic tale of Santa's visit on Christmas Eve. The phrasing has been altered; still the story is the same, except mice play the human roles. It is a delightful rendition that will appeal to both the young and old alike. Different from any other pop-up book I've seen, the backgrounds in Mr. Sabuda's books are generally solid in nature with white pop-up's that are often accented with color. This makes a wonderful contrast of positive and negative space that is unusual, and unexpected yet, striking. In this book, the artist has added more color to the pop-ups than in his earlier holiday works. Creatively conceived, the detailed execution of the pop-ups is what REALLY captures the viewer's attention, and carries this book. They are SO fantastic I have to continually remind myself it is only paper. For instance, when Santa calls out to the reindeer, "No, Dasher! Now, Dancer! Now, Prancer and Vixen! . . ." all eight reindeer literally fly off the page in sleigh formation with Santa trailing behind. It's brilliant! In addition, the finale is gorgeous! It is nearly an all-white scene with Santa in his sleigh, bidding adieu to a quaint little neighborhood down below. The backdrop displays a snow-capped mountain with a pull-tab that allows the viewer to draw Santa and his reindeer across the sky, "Happy Christmas to all, and to all a goodnight." "The Night Before Christmas," is a hardbound book that measures 8 ¼" x 8 ¼" x 1 ½". Highly imaginative, both conceptually and artistically this book will make a valued addition to any Christmas collection. CAREFUL, young one's will be mesmerized by the pop-up action, and will want to grab. Probably best for children four-years and up.
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I collect Night Before Christmas books. I found this one a few days ago at a children's store. It is so incredibly beautiful. It has silhouettes, cut-outs, and ends with an insanely beautiful pop-up. I love kids but this is not a book for children -- it is a masterpiece - a work of art -- read it to your kids but then save it for yourself!
My son is five and already an authority on Santa. We looked inside many books on The Night Before Christmas and he simply did not get into the pictures. Then we found this version illustrated by an artist who must have Santa in his heart. My son loves the full-page images of Santa and all the smaller images he calls "picture windows". He enjoys telling the story in his own words as he looks at each picture. I love the way the illustrations focus on evoking key sensations that add to the heart of the story. Thank you Mr. Tom Browning. You have made this story a treasure far beyond the words!
Couldn't recommend this edition highly enough. The illustrations are beautiful and bring the magic of Christmas to life for both young and old. It truly is an heirloom edition made all the more special by the brass christmas stocking bookmark.
I bought this book as a gift, and now that I've seen it, I'm going to order more. The classic story is made even better by the beautiful fabric-feel cover, cozy illustrations, and the yellow ribbon bookmark with a stocking on the end. You won't be disappointed.
A got started on collecting pop-up books when I encountered a book by Robert Sabuda called "Twelve days of Christmas". It was an astounding book, quite unusual in that it was mostly white. The engineering was amazing. That book led me to buy and collect pop books of which Robert Sabuda's books occupy a high place indeed. His work stands out due to its complexity and yet has the ability to surprise and delight. Each popup in this book is nigh near what is impossible to do out of paper and yet he has done it. The last scene with the little village spread out in a snowy wonderland is a treasure. I will have to buy an another book, just so I can put one away and have one to look at admire and play.
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