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Sunday, December 19, 2010

It's Christmas, David! Written and illustrated by David Shannon. Scholastic, 2010. $19.99 ages 3 and up

"At Christmastime,
everyone always said...
NO David!
No Peeking!
No Snitching!"

OH! NO! Not David again!!!

What a character, and one that many young readers can see in themselves. David hasn't changed much...he still likes mischief and mayhem. If you have read and loved his other stories, you will know that there is nothing sacred to David...and he is so much like the many who will read and enjoy this new adventure. His beleaguered parents haven't changed much either:

"No yawning at the dinner table.
That's the wrong fork!
Sit up straight!
Don't reach.
Put your napkin in your lap."

There is so much that tempts a young boy at Christmas....the presents may be placed out of sight, but there are stools and chairs. Together they afford a path to the tucked-away treasures.  While Mom is taking the next pan of cookies from the oven, a small boy with probing fingers might be able to get his hand on one of those cooling confections, or what about the many decorations that hang on the branches of the trimmed tree?  Unbelievably long lines make waiting to hand Santa a detailed Christmas list a chore that must be endured, and takes a lot of explaining when your turn comes at last.

David does have moments of uncertainty. He wonders if coal might be his gift this year...or no presents at all. It gives a guy pause. In the end, all's well and there is an understanding that David has done the best he can do to be worthy of the gifts given.

Kids will eagerly, and knowingly, await the nude romp, the garish smile, the broken window...all part of the appeal of David's previous stories. He is a force to be reckoned with, and David Shannon does his very best to entertain us with humor and shock at Christmas this year.

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