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The All-I'll-Ever-Want Christmas Doll Hardcover – September 11, 2007
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Best Books of the Year So Far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
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"Parents looking for books on sharing will find this an appealing exploration of the subject, teachers seeking picture books set during the Depression will find many details that bring the period to life. A gentle lesson that plays into the spirit of the holiday."
Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews, November 1, 2007:
“Full of humorous dialogue and scenes of realistic family life showing the close bonds within the family. Pinkney’s watercolor illustrations are masterful, as always…” - Kirkus Review
Review, The New York Times Book Review, December 2, 2007:
"An evocative book with a universal message."
About the Author
Patricia C. McKissack is the author of The Dark-Thirty: Southern Tales of the Supernatural, a Newbery Honor Book and Coretta Scott King Award Winner, and its companion, Porch Lies: Tales of Slicksters, Tricksters, and other Wily Characters, an ALA-ALSC Notable Children’s Book. Ms. McKissack has collaborated with Jerry Pinkney on two previous picture books: Goin’ Someplace Special, a Coretta Scott King Award Winner, and Mirandy and Brother Wind, a Caldecott Honor Book and a Coretta Scott King Award Winner. Her most recent book, Never Forgotten, was a Coretta Scott King Honor Book and received five starred reviews. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri.
Jerry Pinkney received the Caldecott Medal for his wordless retelling of The Lion and the Mouse. He has illustrated more than one hundred books, among them five Caldecott Honor books, including Mirandy and Brother Wind, written by Patricia C. McKissack; five New York Times Best Illustrated Books; and five Coretta Scott King Award winners. Some of his most beloved titles are The Talking Eggs, John Henry, The Ugly Duckling, Goin’ Someplace Special, and The Tortoise and the Hare. Mr. Pinkney lives in Croton-on-Hudson, New York, with his wife, author Gloria Jean Pinkney.
Top Customer Reviews
1. People are more important than things
First, McKissack does a beautiful job of demonstrating through a bit of humor that people are indeed more important than things. When Nella first claims Baby Betty as her own, she has a great time playing all alone with her...for a while. Then Nella gets increasingly frustrated when Baby Betty doesn't respond to her stories or songs until she finally sees her sisters in the other room having a great time playing together and feels sad and lonely. It's not until she invites her sisters to join her and Baby Betty for tea that she truly has a good time. In fact EVERYONE has a good time, and Nella is finally able to say it was the best Christmas ever.
2. Be thankful for what you have
The second lesson the book teaches us it to be thankful for what you have. The Pearson's have to fill the cracks and line the walls with newspaper to keep the cold out. They are in the Great Depression, and money (and work and food and toys) is hard to come by. Yet, when the girls receive their bags of raisins and nuts for Christmas, they are very pleased because it's the most they've ever received. And when they get the Baby Betty doll, they are excited beyond belief. Children who are used to receiving tons and tons of gifts may be horrified at the meager gifts the girls receive, and it's a perfect opportunity to let them know that are many kids out there who are less fortunate than them.Read more ›
With pencil and watercolor illustrations, the artist depicts the three sisters exquisitely. His faces seem real, and he paints them large in expressive moments, shouting, singing, laughing. Despite poverty, this is a touching story of rich familial love.
The book opens with the frantic preparations for Christmas in a poor black family's home just before Christmas in the midst of the Great Depression. Even though the Pearson family was poor, Christmas always came to the Pearson house, but Santy Claus only came occasionally. In order for Santy Claus to come on Christmas the whole Pearson house must be cleaned and readied for Christmas. This included tearing off the faded newspapers which covered the inside walls of the home to keep out the cold winter air, and replacing them with fresh clean newspapers. Nella and her two sisters - Dessa and Eddy work real hard at replacing the newspapers. In the process Nella sees an advertisement on one of the sheets of newsprint. It was an ad for a Baby Betty doll. Nella wished for the impossible and her sisters let her know it. It was just simply too much to wish for a poor black family during the Great Depression.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I was a little disappointed but the illustrations are beautiful.Published 5 months ago by Veronica Donohue
My kids love this book. It has great pictures in it. It has a lot of good talking points especially for the christmas season.Published on January 4, 2014 by V. thomas
The family is oh-so poor, but it's Christmas and the three girls desperately want a Baby Betty doll.
Best part: Sharing is more fun than hoarding. Ages 6-10.