cover image Yes, Virginia: There Is a Santa Claus

Yes, Virginia: There Is a Santa Claus

Chris Plehal, illus. by James Bernardin, Harper, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-06-200173-3

Believers still take heart in the true account of eight-year-old Virginia O'Hanlon's 1897 letter to the New York Sun asking if Santa Claus exists—and the resounding affirmative reply printed. Plehal dramatized these events for a 2009 animated TV special and adapts his version to picture book form. If some of the plotting stretches credibility (such as the discovery of Virginia's discarded letter in the trash), the combination of Bernardin's comically exaggerated characters and Plehal's modern, relatable dialogue gives the story some freshness. Ages 3–7. (Oct.)