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Saint Nicholas: The Real Story of the Christmas Legend Paperback – July 1, 2007


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Saint Nicholas: The Real Story of the Christmas Legend + The Legend of St. Nicholas: A Story of Christmas Giving
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 2 and up
  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Concordia Publishing (July 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0758613415
  • ISBN-13: 978-0758613417
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 7.7 x 0.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #244,531 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Our family book about the real St. Nicholas.
Blair E Petersen
The book also talks about Jesus as the greatest gift that God gives to us and how we remember the gift of Jesus at Christmas.
AmyInTheWind
The story is concise and easy for school-age listeners.
Deuteronomy

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

90 of 91 people found the following review helpful By AmyInTheWind on September 28, 2005
Format: Hardcover
We bought this book when my daughter was 2.5 to help her understand the idea of Santa, and she's been bringing us this book to read over & over for the last year! The book is simple and sweet. It tells one story of St. Nicolas secretly giving money to a family so that the girls in the family could have a dowry & get married. Then it talks about how St. Nicolas continued giving to people. Other people gave to each other. And the stories of St. Nicolas spread all over the world. People called him Father Christmas, which is where Santa comes from. The book also talks about Jesus as the greatest gift that God gives to us and how we remember the gift of Jesus at Christmas.
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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful By trumpetmama on January 12, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I liked this book a lot and it accomplished the purpose for which it was purchased...we don't "do" Santa with our kids, but I wanted them to know that there really was a man named St. Nicholas and who he was and what he did. My daughter really loved this book, and I think it will become a Christmas tradition. It's nice that the real St. Nicholas loved the Lord and was a Christian, and that that was his motivation for giving gifts. I want my children to understand why we give gifts and more importantly, to understand the precious gift of Jesus as Savior, and I felt like this book was a nice Christmas complement.
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 16, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I can't wait to give this as a gift to my nieces, nephews and a lot of my friends' children. I know my own kids are going to love it. This is a stunningly beautiful children's book! The paintings are amazing and beautiful. The story is powerful and really helps people understand what Christmas is all about. And the best thing is that there really was a man named Nicholas. You are going to love this book.
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43 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on December 14, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Saint Nicholas: The Real Story Of The Christmas Legend by Julie Stiegemeyer is a picturebook rendition of the historical roots of Father Christmas. Recounting the life of Saint Nicholas, a pastor in fourth-century Lycia (modern-day Turkey) whose generosity was so profound that he became known as "Father Christmas" and legends circulated about his home in the North Pole and his tradition of distributing gifts on Christmas Eve. Moving, realistic color illustrations by Chris Ellison bring heart to this true story of Christian compassion and inspiration.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Deborah on December 9, 2012
Format: Paperback
I grew up in Germany where Christmas was a religious holiday and St. Nicholas' eve was when presents were given. We would leave our shoes out on Dec. 5, and in the morning they would be filled with chocolate coins and little gifts. Sometimes the burgermeister (or mayor) would visit homes; he was nothing like Santa Claus. He dressed in the imposing robes and mitre of a bishop and was a little bit scary when he asked about your behavior, but he was always kind. We continued the St. Nicholas tradition with our daughters and now with our granddaughters. I bought this book to help the little ones understand the Christian message behind the tradition.

It's the best one for children on the market, but it could use a little more detail about St. Nicholas, who displayed deep religious faith even as a child. I understand that small children might not understand what a bishop is, but the way his home is described makes it sound like a fairy tale rather than a real place (it was a Greek-speaking village under Roman auspices during Nicholas' time, in what is today Turkey). Also, the tradition is that the coins were put into stockings hanging to dry or shoes put out by the door (a common practice in villages even when I was a girl), not just tossed into the window. The connection between what St. Nicholas did then and how we uphold the tradition today is fairly weak, and we have to fill in bits, but the Christian message is clear. The illustrations are beautiful, and the narrative ploy of using a little boy to tell St. Nicholas about the problem makes the story even more accessible to children.

I should just add that when my youngest daughter was five she heard rumors in kindergarten that Santa Claus wasn't real and wanted to know what I thought. I reminded her that we celebrated St.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 3, 2003
Format: Hardcover
What a beautiful book! Full of great information about a real man. If your family observes St. Nicholas' Day -- December 6 -- you'll definitely want this book!
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58 of 71 people found the following review helpful By sueinjapan on December 7, 2010
Format: Paperback
When I ordered this book I did not notice that the publisher was Concordia, which is Lutheran. As a Catholic, I was disappointed that St. Nicholas was so "Protestantized" and presented as if he was a pastor of some generic church rather than a Catholic bishop! This fact was lost on my young kids of course, and they did enjoy the story, but it annoyed my older kids who were listening in. I just wanted to put that out there for any other Catholics that might be considering buying this book for their children to be aware of the rather non-Catholic presentation.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By m4goo5 on December 7, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In our house, we don't stress Santa Claus at Christmas, we try and stress giving to others who need it and that it is Jesus's birthday. But we don't outright say Santa is a myth.

This book does a great job for young kids in describing who Saint Nicholas was, why we might model giving after him (the story describes a single act of his) and how he is referred to in other places (Father Christmas and Santa Claus). It makes it a bit easier to deal with Santa.
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More About the Author

Julie Stiegemeyer has authored more than twenty books for children, including picture books and board books. She has also written for magazines, newspapers, and devotional books. In addition to writing, Julie works at her local public library, and she enjoys speaking about writing for children and adults. Julie lives in the Chicago area. Find out more at www.juliestiegemeyer.net.

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Saint Nicholas: The Real Story of the Christmas Legend
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