Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Picture Books
A Christmas Like Helen's

A Christmas Like Helen's

Fall 2004 Picture Books
Ages: 5 - 8 yrs.
Author: Natalie Kinsey-Warnock
Illustrator: Mary Azarian
ISBN: 0-618-23137-4
Hardcover Price: $16.00
Review:
Christmas in Helen's corner of the world, the beautiful maple forests and sturdy farms of Vermont's Northeast Kingdom, meant long winters without electricity or vehicles. But it also meant storytelling and moonlight skating, homemade syrup and sleigh rides. Such was life for Natalie Kinsey-Warnock's grandmother, the real Helen who inspired this lovely and nostalgic holiday picture book. The details of farm life in a less frantic and complicated era are captivating, as are the hand-colored woodcuts by Caldecott Medal recipient Mary Azarian. It's a warm and loving tribute to both family and the Vermont landscape, but it doesn't exclude the hardships and tough work that were also part of daily existence. The book will be appreciated by children who enjoy the Laura Ingalls Wilder stories and other books that take place long ago. A snuggly wintertime read, it is also a masterful piece of art.
Zarina Mullan Plath   ©2004 Parents' Choice
Zarina Mullan Plath has undergraduate degrees in both biology and English. Her interests include cookbooks/culinary history, South Asian literature (especially in regards to South Asians in America), and, of course, children's literature. Her poetry is included in the anthology Sweeping Beauty (U. of Iowa Press, 2005). Zarina lives in Central Illinois with her husband, two children, and assorted pets.


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