Thursday, 19 September 2013

Jesus' Christmas Party by Nicholas Allan (Red Fox Picture Books)

Jesus' Christmas Party

Written and Illustrated by
Nicholas Allan

Published by Red Fox Picture Books

Oh no, the floodgates are open on the christmas books now, but this one is a heck of a lot of fun, so we'll let it slip through the net.

Bottoms, Royal Knickers and a Santa with a rather full bladder! Nicholas Allan doesn't shy away from being extremely cheeky (and very funny) about subjects that children will be in fits of laughter about. So in some ways "Jesus' Christmas Party" is a bit of a departure as it's a rather sweet book that doesn't prod or poke fun at the little fellah in the manger or his mum and dad, and doesn't require you to be particularly religious to enjoy the story either.

An innkeeper is rudely awoken from his blissful and comfortable slumber by a knock at the door. A couple want a bed for the night, but there's only one place they can possibly squeeze in - the Innkeeper's stable. They're very grateful and make themselves comfortable, and soon the Innkeeper is heading back up the wooden hill to Beddington. Ahhh!

But this is just the start of a night of disturbance for the poor Innkeeper as Shepherds, wise men, angels and soon the whole town gather to find out what exactly is going on in the Innkeeper's stable - and who that wonderful little baby is, nestling in the manger!

This is a book that stands up well to a bit of a daddy "performance" and reading the exasperated innkeeper's bits is great fun as you stomp up the stairs, try to sleep, stomp back down the stairs and deal with the next interruption.

Charlotte is already familiar with the story, of course, most children are - but she loved the way the subject of the nativity is dealt with in a fun way. Whether you believe in the big fellah with the halo or not, you'll love children's reactions to this version of the tale nonetheless (and I'm sure Jesus would definitely have approved of anything that made kids chuckle!)

Charlotte's best bit: The poor innkeeper. Would he ever get a wink of sleep?

Daddy's Favourite bit: Love the fun way the story is told, and Nicholas Allan's lovely cosy art.