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The Night Before Christmas


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About the Author

Clement Clarke Moore was born in New York City and attended Columbia College, graduating at the top of his class in 1798. While he authored various works, his most beloved is the poem A Visit from St. Nicholas, better known as The Night Before Christmas, written in 1822 for his nine children. Moore taught Greek and oriental literature at the General Theological Society from 1823 until he retired in 1850. He died in Newport, Rhode Island, in 1863.


PreS Up-Dedicated fans of the classic poem will enjoy many aspects of this newly illustrated version. Jaramillo has created a faux photo album of St. Nick's visit to the Gordon family in 1901, which she claims to have found under the floorboards of her old house. The artwork, which combines traditional and computer-enhanced photography, features ragged-edged, sepia-colored snapshots (supposedly taken by Uncle Russell), album pages with a charming period border, and aged tape labels (written by the youngest Gordon). Jaramillo has broken some of the conventions of the story: the whole family goes downstairs to investigate, and strangely Santa seems to hover in one photo. At times the photos are enchanting, capturing the mystery and wonder of past times and the magic of flying reindeer. At other times the "Victorian family" is stiffly posed and a touch too modern. This lush "historic" view will appeal to fans of the photographer and collectors of picture-book editions of the poem.-A. C. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Santore has illustrated many classic stories, including Snow White, The Wizard of Oz, and The Little Mermaid, and he now brings to life Moore's "A Visit from St. Nicholas" in characteristically elegant and detail-rich paintings. His is a very traditional vision, as he brings readers inside a stately colonial home, tastefully appointed with wreaths, garlands, and stockings. In a particularly nice bit of design, when the narrator "Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash," readers can do the same, opening a double-page gatefold that reveals a quiet village blanketed by snow-and a sleigh silhouetted against the moon. It's a gorgeous interpretation of a beloved holiday classic. All ages. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

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