cover image The Oldest Elf

The Oldest Elf

James Stevenson. Greenwillow Books, $15 (1pp) ISBN 978-0-688-13755-7

You're never too old to deliver Christmas cheer--even if you're the oldest elf (or reindeer) on Santa's staff. While young whippersnappers busily buzz in the main workshop, Elwyn still builds toys the old-fashioned way in a quiet cellar room. But for all his care, Elwyn finishes his creations 20 minutes after Santa has taken to the skies on Christmas Eve. Fellow retiree Blitzen the reindeer comes through in the nick of time, and the experienced duo fly off to make their own special deliveries. Framed by his unmistakable, jaunty ink-and-watercolor art, Stevenson's (The Worst Person's Christmas) latest is thoroughly sweet, but lacks the punchy wit and heart-tugging tenderness found in many of his other works. Ages 5-up. (Oct.)