This is a small book containing over forty very short stories on the theme of Christmas. A selection of amusing, thoughtful, spooky, and scary tales means that there is something for everyone. It would be useful for schools and a handy stocking filler too
Part of the successful Short Series from Oxford University Press, this book contains a selection of very short stories, none more than two pages long, on a Christmas theme. There are over forty tales in this collection, some are derived from traditional tales from different countries, some are more current and the wide variety of funny, thought-provoking, spooky and occasionally scary stories provides something to suit all tastes.
Amongst the various stories included are some offering a different take on the story of the Nativity, for example, The Brave Little Camel is a charming tale about a baby camel who accompanied the three wise men on their journey to Bethlehem. Others detail the origins of Christmas gift-givers around the world including La Befana from Italy. Famous historical Christmas stories are included too such as the poignant description of Christmas 1914 in the First World War trenches and the delightful description of the source of the much loved carol Silent Night. The folk tales about how the Christmas Rose and the Poinsettia came to be were new to me but well known stories such as The Little Match Girl are included too. There are ghost stories and slightly spooky tales and one or two scary ones that may result in having to leave the bedroom light on! However there are some jokes and amusing stories to lighten the tone too.
Although books of this type do not have a great use beyond the Christmas period the length of the stories would make this book very useful for read aloud sessions in schools. It would be a useful stocking filler for children of about eight plus too.