cover image Where, Oh Where, Is Santa Claus?

Where, Oh Where, Is Santa Claus?

Lisa Wheeler, , illus. by Ivan Bates. . Harcourt, $16 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-15-216408-9

The search is on when Santa's reindeer put out their version of an APB: “Clip-clop, clip-clop, two-by-two./ Santa, Santa! Where are you?” All manner of polar paws (and some fins) get in step and join the hunt on a frigid, frosty arctic night. Could prints in the snow (“Ziggy-zaggy/ tricky track./ Crisscross, crisscross/ doubles back”) be a break in the case? This jaunty, fun-to-say verse has the verve of a kid-friendly whodunit. And Wheeler and Bates's (One Dark Night ) snowy sleuths, most notably a gleeful belly-sliding seal pup and “bumbling-tumbling” polar cub shaking off the water from an evening dip, are not to be missed. Ages 3-7. (Oct.)