Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Christmas Eve Magic: Inspired by Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol

Christmas Eve Magic: Inspired by Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol

Lucie Papineau
Illustrator:  Stphane Poulin 
Picture Book
For ages 4 to 8
Kids Can Press, 2006   ISBN: 978-1553379539

Barton is a young pig who hates Christmas. Indeed there is nothing about Christmas that he likes. The sooner the horrible day is over the better he thinks. So off to bed he goes on Christmas Eve looking forward to the day when "this miserable Christmas will be over."

What Barton does not expect is that he is going to have a very special visitor on this Christmas Eve. He is going to meet a little mouse who will show him his Christmas Past, a Christmas Present, and a Christmas Yet to Come. Barton sees a Christmas when he was happy, a little pig sitting in the middle of his family celebrating the joys of Christmas. He sees five little orphans trying to celebrate Christmas even though they have very little to celebrate with. Then he sees himself in the future, a young man living in his mansion all alone and angry with everyone.

The sights and feelings that Barton experiences during these magical journeys help him finally understand what Christmas is about and he sets about doing all he can to bring the holiday, and happiness, back into his life.

This is a wonderful retelling of Charles Dickens' famous story and it will serve as a perfect introduction to the story for children who are too young to understand the more complicated original tale. Children will love the animal characters and will be especially charmed by Barton's little mouse guide who arrives on the scene dressed in a little nightshirt, a red scarf, and tiny slippers.