Candy Cane Lane

Scott Santoro. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (48p) ISBN 978-1-4814-5661-6
Inspired by the plastic choirboy that decorated Santoro’s childhood lawn at Christmas, this offbeat story opens on Candy Cane Lane, where dazzling Christmas displays adorn all the houses, except for one. In that small house, a girl whose father can’t afford decorations is thrilled to discover a discarded choirboy after a storm, but her father accidentally returns it to the trash. In a wild chain of events, the choirboy befriends a plastic reindeer and Halloween ghost, arrives at a factory filled with rejected lawn ornaments (“There was a Santa with a green coat, a camel with three humps, wise men without gifts, and a snowman who looked melted”), and leads them back to Candy Cane Lane to brighten the girl’s yard and spirits. Santoro’s (Which Way to Witch School?) brassy digital cartoons have an appealing 1960s vibe, and his cast of playful misfits cements the idea that the holidays are for everyone. Ages 4–8. Agent: Scott Gould, RLR Associates. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 09/26/2016
Release date: 09/20/2016
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