Letters to Santa Claus by The Elves

letters

For years, children and adults have stuffed their candid dreams, wishes, and promises into envelopes addressed to Santa Claus. Whether the envelopes come with stamps or without, are addressed to “The Big Red Guy at Jingle Bells Lane” or simply “To Santa,” for over 100 years, millions of these letters have poured into Santa Claus, Indiana. Arriving from all corners of the globe, the letters ask for toys, family reunions, snow, and help for the needy―sometimes the needy being the writers themselves. They are candid, heartfelt, and often blunt. Many children wonder how Santa gets into their chimneyless homes. One child reminds Santa that she has not hit her brothers over 1,350 times that year, and another respectfully requests two million dollars in “cold cash.” One child hopes to make his life better with a time machine, an adult woman asks for a man, and one miscreant actually threatens Santa’s reindeer! Containing more than 250 actual letters and envelopes from the naughty and nice reaching back to the 1930s, this moving book will touch readers’ hearts and bring back memories of a time in our lives when the man with a white beard and a red suit held out the hope that our wishes might come true.

Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Indiana University Press (October 5, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0253017939
ISBN-13: 978-0253017932

Purchase here!

The Elf of Luxembourg by Tom Weston

Alex and Jackie are back with a new adventure in The Elf of Luxembourg by Tom Weston.

Sisters Alex and Jackie O’Rourke vacation with Aunt Anne and Uncle Jim in Luxembourg. Along with shopping, they find an unexpected adventure involving vampires and an elf.

Hundreds of years ago, the lands of the Muisca were invaded and the wife and son of Cuchaquicha, kidnapped. While many treasurers were gained, what the invaders truly sought was El Dorado. The vampires believed Cucha could draw out the elf who was the guardian of El Dorado, but their plan failed.

Four hundred years later, Jackie and Alex are traveling the streets of Luxembourg, when they are given a strange gold coin. The coin and a meeting with a handsome and mysterious stranger pulls the girls into a dangerous adventure that places them in the middle of a battle between the vampires and the elf.  

As with the first book in this series, First Night, Tom Weston uses an historically rich location and his own imagination to create a young adult fantasy novel that is both unique and engaging. While The Elf of Luxembourg is the second book in this series, you do not have to read the first book in order to follow these events, as this is a stand-alone book. And just like in First Night, Jackie and Alex manage to stumble into the thick of things without realizing it. Don’t you think they should learn by now? 🙂

The story of Cuchaquicha and his desire to be reunited with his wife and son connects Alex and Jackie to the past, but it is also a love story that readers get to see unfold as the book progresses.

Weston has a different style than many of the YA books I’ve read. He chooses a third person narrator to unfold the story, versus having it be told from the point of view of one of the young main characters. As a result, he is able to share the rich history of landmarks in Luxembourg up to the present day. This decision does have its drawbacks, however, as it doesn’t allow the reader to get inside Jackie’s and Alex’s heads. For a character-driven reader, this style might be a challenge. That said,  this was the same style Weston used in First Night, and even though I am a character-driven reader, I requested to review the second book in the series.

The Elf of Luxembourg is a great addition to the Alex and Jackie series. With the popularity of Twilight, I’m certain this book will have many fans.

Rating:  🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Publisher: tom weston media 
  • ISBN-10: 0981941346
  • ISBN-13: 978-0981941349
  • SRP:  $10.95


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