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Father Fox's Christmas Rhymes    by Clyde Watson & Wendy Watson order for
Father Fox's Christmas Rhymes
by Clyde Watson
Order:  USA  Can
Farrar Straus & Giroux, 2003 (2003)

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* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

The author and illustrator of Pennyrhymes bring us what is bound to become a new Christmas classic in Father Fox's Christmas Rhymes. It opens on the excitement of small foxes as Father Fox comes in the door 'With sweets in my pockets & holes in my socks'. Verses and scenes move on to winter wonderland playtime, an expedition into the forest to find the 'perfect tree', the mulling of cider, a candlelit night-time trek, family music time, and many more simple holiday activities.

There's all the mystery that accompanies the holiday for small ones - 'Secret things in / Secret places / Whispered words / & knowing faces'. There are meal preparations in a 'kitchen bursting with uncles & aunts', a holiday table that's 'fancy & fine / With candles & napkins & goblets that shine', and the magical excitement of Christmas Eve, huddled in bed with the stockings hung. But there's also a small fox wishing for 'peace & love & joy / More precious things than any toy' to remind us of what's most important of all.

Father Fox's Christmas Rhymes are cheering and heartwarming, perfect to read and re-read with little ones throughout the holiday season.

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