Tuesday, December 17, 2019

"The Lobsters' Night Before Christmas". - a bookwrap

Unwrapping the Intro


The Lobsters’ Night Before Christmas 

by Christina Laurie 
Illustrated by Elizabeth Moisan

* Ages:  5-6 years
* Grade Level:  PS-3
* Hardcover:  32 pages
* Publisher:  Schiffer; 1 edition 
* Pub. Date: October 28, 2019
* Language:  English

This is a surprise Christmas book that informs, causes laughter, entertains, brings families together to read and enjoy the holiday for all ages (specifically 5 to 8) because holidays are a time for families and lap reading.

Editorial Reviews

"What a fun and fascinating experience to have a lobster arriving instead of Santa Claus and minnows replacing the tired old reindeer. The illustrations are full of action and give the viewer much room for added imagination. A must share with the children, grandchildren, and parents."  ~ Suzanne M. Packer, nationally exhibiting artist, first director of the Cape Cod Museum of Art, winner of the Muse Artist Award, Cape Cod Museum of Art.

"Christina Laurie knows how to decorate a child's world with magical word choices in both prose and poetry. I couldn't be more more happy about this picture book." ~ Joan Walsh, Founder of Cape Cod Children's Writers, author, writer

"Here, our beloved Christmas story is creatively translated into a tale from lobster-land. We follow Santa Claws into the depths of the sea, distributing his precious gifts and meeting its denizens, all illustrated in poetical watercolors by Elizabeth Moisan. In the process we learn quite a bit about the unexpectedly complex life and habitat of the star of the show, well beyond its familiar appearance on the dinner plate or clambake. An original mixture of folklore, poetry and marine biology on a tableau of visual artistry." ~ Jelle Atema, Ph.D. Proffesor Emeritus of Biology, Boston University Marine Program, and Visiting Investigator, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, Woods Hole, MA

"A wonderful book that makes a familiar theme resonate and turns it into a seagoing gift for both children and young-at-heart adults." ~ Jim Coogan, author of Clarence The Cranberry that Wouldn't Bounce

"With rollicking rhymes and a creative twist, Christina Laurie adds a fun new version of A Visit from St. Nicholas to your holiday bookshelf. Through Elizabeth Moisan's soft watercolor illustrations, the reader feels the ocean's gentle movement. The Lobsters' Night Before Christmas will delight young readers." ~ Becky Hall, Author of Morris and Buddy and A is for Arches

Unwrapping Some Beautiful Illustrations

The Book

This is a refreshing retelling of the classic "A Visit by St. Nicholas" by Rev. Clement C. Moore, written in December 1823.  It portrays underwater creatures eagerly waiting the arrival of Sea Santa to deliver their gifts.  He finally appears in his clamshell sleigh powered by eight minnows ready to bless the creatures not only by his presence but with their presents.  

"Skate cases were hung on the reef with care
In hopes that Sea Santa soon would be there."

"Dressed in a shell held by a white pearl, 
And squishy green seaweed 'round his neck made a swirl.
A bundle of toys he held tight in his claws
And I knew in a moment it was surely Sea Claws."

Sea Santa didn't hang around long. He efficiently distributed the gifts and then sprang into his sleigh, and was off to a neighbouring shore.  He was focused on his important mission.  

"I heard him exclaim as they swam out of sight,
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night." 

 The watercolour paintings are muted, beautiful, and dreamlike.  The clever rhyming is playful, imaginative and original.  There are facts about lobsters at the end of the poem which adds an educational component to the book and a search-and-find element where kids can try and locate a lobster that is hiding in the eel grass throughout the book.  It would be a fun choice for a family read on Christmas Eve.  I like it very much and I highly recommend it.  

Storywraps Rating - 5 +++ HUGS!!!!!

Meet the Author

  Christina Laurie, internationally published poet, is a former newspaper reporter and editor. Author of several children's books, a Cape Cod alphabet book, a daily devotional book, and middle-grade fantasy, she has spent her summers and retired life on Cape Cod. 

About the Illustrator

  Elizabeth Moisan has worked professionally as an artist since graduating from Parsons School of Design in 1970.  She is retired from her 43-year career working as a carpet designer in the home-furnishings industry and is currently working as an illustrator and book designer. She is the author of Master of the Sweet Trade: A Story of the Pirate Samuel Bellamy, Mariah Hallett, and the Whydah.

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Read on...
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