There is a legend that describes how, at midnight on Christmas Eve, all creatures are granted the power of speech for one hour. In this rich collection, Lee Bennett Hopkins and a dozen other poets imagine what responses they might offer. The poems represent a diverse group of animals, but all come together with one singular purpose: celebrating the joy of the miraculous event.
This collection of graceful poems provides readers with a Nativity story unlike any other -- at times gently humorous, at times profound, but always inviting readers to appreciate the wonder of Christmas. This book is a perfect gift for the holiday season.
Includes poems by...
Lee Bennett Hopkins
Joan Bransfield Graham
Amy Ludwig VanDerwater
X. J. Kennedy
Ann Whitford Paul
Rebecca Kai Dotlich
Alma Flor Ada
Lee Bennett Hopkins (1938–2019) was an acclaimed children's poet and anthologist. His books include I Remember (Lee & Low), America at War (Simon & Schuster), Manger, and Night Wishes (both Eerdmans). In 2011, the Guinness Book of World Records recognized Lee as the world's most prolific anthologist of poetry for children-with over 100 titles to his name. He also founded the Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award and the ILA/Lee Bennett Hopkins Promising Poet Award to recognize excellent writing for children. Until his death in 2019, Lee lived in Cape Coral, Florida, where he wrote many poems about animals-including Duke, his old cocker spaniel. Visit his website at leebennetthopkins.com.
Helen Cann is an illustrator, painter, and mapmaker based in England. She has illustrated more than twenty books, including For Every Little Thing (Eerdmans), Manger (Eerdmans), and How to Make Hand-Drawn Maps (Chronicle). Her work has appeared in exhibitions around the world and has been commissioned as props for film and television. Follow Helen on Instagram @helencannart or visit her website at helencann.co.uk.
Kirkus Reviews (STARRED review) “A lovely collection for those who wish to emphasize the Christian nature of the holiday, worth savoring slowly during the Christmas season."
Booklist "A luminous addition to poetry collections."
The Horn Book "The poems convey both the majesty and intimacy of that night [when Christ was born]. Decorative mixed-media illustrations highlight each animal on its own double-page spread."
The Storytellers “This charming collection represents the majesty and wonder of a special night celebrated by Christians throughout the world.”
Children’s Illustration “Helen Cann’s lovingly detailed artworks (watercolor and mixed media) add to the warm traditional feel of the collection, and create, with the sound of the poems, a book to carefully relish.”
School Library Journal “Warm and satisfying, this is a top choice for holiday gift-giving or sharing in a classroom, church, or library.”
Midwest Book Review “Captivating color illustrations of each animal complement the humble poems. . . . Highly recommended.”
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