The Legend of St. Nicholas {a book review}

 
Disclosure: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
 


Seven years ago when we first became parents, we didn't want to subscribe to the whole "Santa" at Christmas time scene.  We didn't want to stand in long lines forcing our kids onto random old men's laps all in the name of the Santa game.  We didn't want to foster entitlement and greed with the over gifting magic Santa sensation.

Let me tell you just how hard that is in our culture.  It is hard.  You go to the store and your kid sees it.  You go to a friend or family's house and they hear it.  "What did Santa bring you!?"

In the end we decided to gently embrace it, as a cultural tradition and just have fun while making Christ the center of Christmas - this day and all days.

It is hard to find good quality books that talk about both Santa (the real version) and Christ.  I can find books on one or the other or the magic bowl full of jelly Santa.

The Legend of St. Nicholas, by Dandi Daley Mackall, brings the story of Christ and the story of "Santa" together, in a non-magical, no flying reindeer way.

It's the story of a modern day boy, named Nick, who is a bit selfish when it comes to buying gifts for his siblings (as most kids).  He over hears a store Santa telling the story of St. Nicholas, a Christian boy from long ago, who wanted to give to his friends in need while expecting nothing in return.

This story book finally hit the mark of exactly what I was looking for in my own young guy who often thinks of only himself at holidays.  We read it together and at the end he says, "I think I want to give a special toy to my best friend.  Maybe leave it on his porch Christmas morning as a surprise."  Proud momma moment.

I believe this is an excellent story book to gently introduce the real Santa, with no mention of the north pole magical Santa.  It's a great holiday book to have to foster the joy of giving.  Highly recommended.

The only "negative" I see is that there is an advertisement on Amazon, "The final pages in the book include fun Father Christmas traditions in other lands".  I see nothing like that in the back.  Instead there's a little blurb about the legends and traditions of "a man named Nicolas" believed to have become Bishop of Myra.  I think the advertisement should be reworded so you aren't thinking you're getting a neat little look into the customs of other countries, as I thought.  However, this doesn't change my good opinion of the content of the book - it's just poorly worded advertisement.

The actual book itself is excellent quality.  I loved the glitter on the book jacket.  The illustrations are just so endearing.

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