cover image Santa's Eleven Months Off

Santa's Eleven Months Off

Mike Reiss, , illus. by Michael G. Montgomery. . Peachtree, $16.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-1-56145-421-1

Nice work if you can get it. After spending all of December preparing for and executing his globe-spanning toy delivery, Santa spends the rest of the year relaxing and entertaining himself. Reiss (How Murray Saved Christmas ) devotes a verse to each month, using tongue-in-cheek imagery (Santa studies elf esteem and basic reindeer labor laws) and occasionally forcing a rhyme. But expansive oil paintings keep the energy high, depicting the jolly fat man zooming off for sushi in Hollywood, sumo wrestling in Japan and lounging on the beach in summer. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)