Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Details! Details! Only You Can Save Christmas! A Help-the-Elf Adventure by Adam Wallace

My name is Wink, Wink Silverbells.

It's my job to make sure Christmas Eve goes according to plan.

It's all gone well so far. Santa's loaded sleigh has just taken off with all eight reindeer feeling their oats and Rudolph's nose with a full charge. It's time for Santa's point man Wink to put up his feet in the now quiet workshop.

But what's that rolled-up piece of paper with a jaunty red bow? Did Santa mean to take it along? Wink has to know.

He reads the title and the first line about 12 Days of Christmas.

Oh, No! This must be a list of things Santa wants to give Mrs. Claus!

Wink looks at the first item: A partridge in a pear tree?

What the Elf?

There are no pear trees at the North Pole. And if there ever was a partridge, he's flown the coop and gone south by now! Wink needs some Christmas helpers--NOW! He turns to his readers to pitch in!

I need YOU!

Some substitutions are in order. Maybe you can round up some bird willing to perch in a fir tree?

Good. Now for a duo of turtle doves. No turtle doves? So how 'bout two turtles?

Okay! What's next? French hens? Parlez vous? Go outside and say "Oui!" over and over.

Now. What's next? Four calling birds? What does Santa think this place is--a poultry farm?

I found the four calling birds.

Actually they text more than they call, but... close enough!

You can see where this one is going, in Adam Wallace's Only YOU Can Save Christmas!: A Help-the-Elf Adventure (Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, 2017), a comic interactive holiday tale in which readers are called up to whistle, honk, yodel, and even wiggle their butts a couple of times (his term, not mine!) to get all the stuff together to surprise Mrs. Claus. And she's going to be surprised all right, what with the dancing ladies and leaping lords, five doughnut rings, and a menagerie waiting for her, not to mention the elves taking selfies. She won't even notice the boring gift--a vacuum cleaner--that Santa brought for her--but she's going to need it after the rest of her gifts get done dancing and partying--and whatever all those birds do.

Author Adam Wallace himself has been busy pre-Christmas, having given youngsters two new elf stories with which to make merry, counting his other just published picture book hit, How to Catch an Elf.

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