cover image Little Elfie One

Little Elfie One

Pamela Jane, illus. by Jane Manning. HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-06-220673-2

The creators of Little Goblins Ten jump from Halloween to Christmas in this polar riff on “Over in the Meadow.” Counting up from an elf’s single son to a cat’s 10 kittens, Jane’s catchy, alliterative verse introduces an array of parents and offspring, with some amusing monikers for the little ones. A gingerbread man and his “little gingies three” jump down from a Christmas tree where they have been hung as ornaments, and a mother polar bear dives into icy water with her “little polies five.” Santa’s eight elves and nine reindeer bring the tale to a cheery close on Christmas Eve. Manning’s dappled watercolors treat readers to comically exaggerated images—there’s almost a hint of mischief lurking in the narrowed eyes of her characters, be they human, elf, or animal—and deliver ample Christmas spirit. Ages 4–8. Author’s agent: Molly Jaffa, Folio Literary Management. (Sept.)