Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Booky Advent Calendar Day 7 - "Elliot's Arctic Surprise" by Catherine Barr and Francesca Chessa (Frances Lincoln Children's Books)

A hugely impressive book with an important environmental message is also our Booky Advent Calendar book for day 7. Here's "Elliot's Arctic Surprise" by Catherine Barr and Francesca Chessa...
It's fairly unusual to see a Christmas-themed book that doesn't shove the season of goodwill down your throat, but actually uses Christmas as a great way to underline an important eco-message.

Young Elliot starts the story about as far away as possible from all things icy, Arctic and Christmassy but when he finds a mysterious message in a bottle, Elliot realises that Santa's homeland is in grave danger, and without Santa there'll be no Christmas!

Oil companies are moving in, threatening to steamroller Santa's workshop so Santa has sent out a cry for help to all the children of the world to come to his rescue.

Children being children do just that, and Elliot disappears off on a boat (with a mysterious white-bearded stranger). The old gentleman is a kindly sea captain and they're soon at the North Pole.

The scene that greets them is terrible. Huge black noisy hulking-great-big oil refineries and rigs have moved in to plunder the arctic's natural resources. Can the kids somehow make their voices heard, and stop the oil companies before it's too late?

A truly fantastic book written in conversation with Greenpeace UK, with a thought-provoking afterword to let kids know why it's so important to halt the planet's obsession with fossil fuel use before greenhouse gases rob us of the Arctic for good.

"Elliot's Arctic Surprise" by Catherine Barr and Francesca Chessa is out now, published by Frances Lincoln Children's Books (kindly supplied for review)