cover image Naughty Claudine’s Christmas

Naughty Claudine’s Christmas

Patrick Jennings, illus. by Suzanne Kaufman. Random House, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-101-93734-1

Claudine, a bright-eyed girl with a blonde bob, has strong feelings about Santa: “He watched you when you were sleeping and when you were awake. Which was snooping.” Then there’s the fact that he sneaks into kids’ houses in the middle of the night. Claudine attempts to derail Santa’s impending home invasion by acting so naughty that he won’t visit her house, a course of action that doesn’t thrill her older sister. Retro details add charm to Kaufman’s cheery illustrations (Claudine sings along to a record player during a loud, late-night performance of “Silent Night”), and it’s always clear that there’s no maliciousness behind her bad behavior. Jennings playfully suggests that skepticism (and an awareness of one’s own comfort zone) is a good thing—and something Santa can respect, as it turns out. Ages 3–7. [em]Author’s agent: Rosemary Stimola, Stimola Literary Studio. Illustrator’s agent: Alexandra Penfold, Upstart Crow Literary. (Oct.) [/em]