The Perfect Christmas
written by Eileen Spinelli, illustrated by JoAnn Adinolfi
Henry Holt and Company, 2011
Interest Level: Grades K-2
Reviewed from purchased copy.
BLURB: Family one: exquisite
pastries, a beautifully trimmed tree, and festive cello music. Family
two: an artificial tree, rock hard candy, and custom kazoo carols. Full
of silly humor, this cheerful picture book proves that no matter how you
celebrate Christmas, it’s the spirit of the holiday that counts the
This book is pretty straightforward. It compares the different ways that two families celebrate Christmas. I enjoyed looking at the differences between the two families. The way the two families come together at the end is a pleasant reminder that we can find things in common with each other if we make the effort. There is some humor mixed in (one of the grandmother's cookies breaking someone's toe).
The story is written in rhyme that flows fairly well which makes the book good as a read-a-loud. The illustrations are colorful and pleasing. I liked the way the collage aspects of the illustrations gave them texture (I like texture). Overall, a very friendly, pleasing read.
I plan to use this book with my first graders next week and talk about some of the different ways that people celebrate. The students will undoubtedly be more than willing to share different ways that their families celebrate. I'm always on a mission to help students realize that just because other people do things differently that doesn't make it bad.