A tender, yet heartrending tale of the season can be found in Main Street: ‘Tis the Season by Ann M. Martin.
Christmas is coming to Camden Falls, but Ruby and Flora aren’t quite sure how to feel about it. Camden Falls looks like it came right out of a picture postcard during the Christmas season, but this is their first Christmas without their parents. Thankfully they’ve made lots of nice friends. But when Olivia and Nikki are dealing with troubles of their own, it might be up to Ruby, Flora and some other residents of town to make their Christmas bright.
I love reading seasonal stories, mainly because I am a Christmas fanatic. The author does a fine job of portraying small town America during the holiday season. Martin’s writing is so descriptive that you truly feel you’re right there walking along Main Street, down Aiken Avenue, and in the Row Houses where many of this small Massachusetts town live.
I have to admit to being on the fence about this story, though. There’s so much conflict that it’s a bit overwhelming at times. Olivia might have to leave Camden Falls because her parents both lost their jobs. Then there’s Nikki, whose happy that her abusive father has gone away, but she doesn’t know when or if he’ll return, and he hasn’t sent the family any money, so Christmas will be tight. On top of that, Ruby and Flora are coping with their first Christmas without their parents, and other residents of town have troubles of their own. There’s also the unusual visit of Aunt Allie from New York. Ruby and Flora’s aunt can be a bit prickly, to say the least.
While the book ends on a happy note, I had a difficult time plodding through all the misery to get there. In addition, I feel it’s important for parents to read this book first, because certain Christmas secrets are revealed that might ruin the magic for the young reader in their home.
I would like to read the previous two books in this series to see if I feel differently about Martin’s Main Street books. This one just didn’t do it for me.
Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂
- Publisher:Scholastic Paperbacks
- ISBN-13: 978-0439868815
- SRP: $6.99 (paperback)
I purchased a copy of this book from a Scholastic Book Fair two years ago. I received no monetary compensation of any kind to provide my review.
This is a book I read for The Christmas Spirit Reading Challenge. To see my original list visit here. I have read 7 books for this challenge, and this completes my list.
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The story sounds like it might me a bit overwhelming for young readers. Maybe one or two problems would have been enough. There are happy families out there. 🙂 Thanks for the review.
That’s how I felt about it too, Bev. It’s a lot of misery for a kid’s book–especially one aimed at kids as young as 8.