Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Lucy's Christmas

Lucy's Christmas

Donald Hall
Illustrator:  Michael McCurdy 
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 8
David R Godine, 2007   ISBN: 978-1567923421

Though the leaves have only just started to turn, Lucy is thinking ahead. She is planning for Christmas already, and she carefully makes her mother a pincushion out of scraps of felt and left over pieces of sheep's wool. After she and her family choose a new stove out the Sears and Roebuck Catalog, Lucy makes her little sister Caroline a clothespin doll, and she makes her friend Rebecca a pen wiper.

In November Lucy and her sister begin to rehearse their parts in the church Christmas program. The new stove arrives and everyone is delighted with the new arrival. Best of all Mama agrees to start teaching Lucy how to cook.

As the month rolls on the preparations for Christmas intensify and Lucy and Caroline dream of the Christmas service, the play they are going to be in, and the gifts that they are going to give and receive.

In this delightful picture book Donald Hall describes what it was like to prepare for, and celebrate, Christmas on a New Hampshire farm at the turn of the century. This is the story of his mother Lucy, who lived on just such a farm and whose family ordered a new stove out of a catalogue in 1909. The author's words create compelling images of a Christmas that is simple, and filled with the essence of Christmas magic and goodwill.

With Michael McCurdy's beautiful woodcut style illustrations to accompany the text, this is a picture book that families will enjoy coming back to again and again.