Holiday spirit crackles in Toht's warm, step-by-step recounting of how humble stately pines transform into shimmering Christmas trees. Snowy outdoor scenes of tree selection give way to cozy interiors as a family brings its tree home and begins to set up and decorate it, aided by friends. The clipped verse never misses a beat, and Toht stokes gentle anticipation throughout the process: "Add the final touches now—/ garlands strung from bough to bough./ Strands of tinsel on the tips,/ falling down in silver drips./ Then... grab a footstool./ Climb right up./ Set something/ wonderful on top." Toht keeps things secular (an angel is mentioned as a possible tree topper, but that's it), presumably aiming for a broad audience, while Jarvis's chalk and pencil texturing adds to the sense of a casual, homey holiday filled with traditions many families will recognize. Ages 3–7. Illustrator's agency: Bright Agency. (Sept.) Copyright 2017 Publisher Weekly.Review by School Library Journal Reviews
PreS-Gr 2—A family visits a pine tree lot to pick out the perfect tree. Rhyming, instructional text accompanies the family as they transport the tree, set it up, unpack decorations, and find friends to help decorate it. For example, on how to decorate the tree: "Stretch along some/twinkling lights,/a colored mix/or simply white…Start up top/or near the base;/wrap around/and tuck in place." Finally, when the tree is crowned with a star, the tree skirt is laden with presents, and the lights are plugged in: "LOOK! It's not a pine tree/anymore. It's a…CHRISTMAS TREE!" Friends and family members gaze at it, awestruck, on a dazzling spread that requires a vertical orientation for added drama. The final scene is a view of the family's house after nightfall, twinkling with starlight and strung lights, and a wish for a "Merry CHRISTMAS, one and all!" The pencil, chalk, paint, and digitally colored paintings are brimming with holiday cheer and warmth. VERDICT Share with little ones prior to decorating a tree or as secular Christmas fare for holiday storytimes.—Shanna Kim, Los Angeles Public Library Copyright 2017 School Library Journal.
A holiday read-aloud evokes the rituals of decorating a Christmas tree, from picking out just the right tree and digging out boxes of decorations to stringing tinsel and turning on the twinkling lights.Review by Publisher Summary 2
Follow along as a family goes to the Christmas tree lot to pick out their tree, host a decorating day, and celebrate the holiday season.Review by Publisher Summary 3
A holiday read-aloud evokes the rituals of decorating a Christmas tree, from picking out just the right tree and digging out boxes of decorations to stringing tinsel and turning on the twinkling lights. A first picture book.Review by Publisher Summary 4
A festive read-aloud brimming with all the joy and excitement of Christmastime — beginning, of course, with picking out a tree!Part of the magic of the Christmas season stems from the traditions that families and friends take part in every year: hanging up stockings; putting lights in the windows; and, one of the most important of all, picking out and taking home the Christmas tree. With style and warmth, debut author Patricia Toht and Jarvis, the author-illustrator of Alan’s Big, Scary Teeth, evoke all the rituals of decorating the tree — digging out boxes jam-packed with ornaments and tree trimmings, stringing tinsel, and, at long last, turning on those twinkling lights. Joyously drawn and rhythmically written, this celebration of family, friends, and the holiday season is as merry as the tradition it depicts.