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When Santa Fell/Earth(lib)(CD)

Press: Listening Library (October 10, 2006)
Publication Date:2006-10
ISBN:9780739337837
Author Name:Funke, Cornelia
Language:English

Content

What would happen if Santa fell to Earth? Christmas through the eyes of Cornelia Funke: quirky, funny, ultimately heartwarming, and packaged in a collectible format. 
A new holiday classic!Scared by a storm, Twinklestar, the least reliable reindeer, bolts--causing Santa and his sleigh to crash-land.
And though Santa has dropped into a friendly neighborhood, he's not safe: Jeremiah Goblynch, the ruthless new leader of the Council of Yuleland, is determind to put an end to children's wishes and turn the holiday season into his own personal moneymaking scheme.
As the last REAL St.
Nick around, only Santa stands between Goblynch and his grinchlike plan.
With the help and hope of kids Charlotte and Ben, Santa must face Goblynch and his Nutcracker goons to save Christmas!

From Booklist

Now that Funke's U.S. 
name recognition is rock solid, it will surprise few to see her foreign backlist emerge in English editions.
In this illustrated Christmas novel originally published in Germany in 1994, short chapters tell of a grinchy takeover in Yule Land, where the region's crack team of Santas has been forced to submit to new, moneygrubbing policies.
A renegade good Santa recruits main-character Ben and a lonely neighborhood girl to help topple the tyrant.
Many members of the chapter-book audience will count themselves too worldly to truck with books about Santa, and for every glimmer of the invention that distinguishes Funke's later efforts, there are some odd notes, such as references to Ben's math difficulties, which read like a gleeful endorsement of cheating.
Still, there are few Christmas-themed options for children wanting something more substantial than a picture book, and families seeking a seasonal, chapter-a-day read-aloud will find the cookie-cutter story line perfectly palatable alongside eggnog and gathered loved ones.
Jennifer MattsonCopyright © American Library Association.
All rights reserved

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

PWFunke's (Inkheart ) reinvention of the Santa myth involves foul-mouthed elves, invisible reindeer and angels who sew, bake, cobble boots and collect children's dreams for Niklas Goodfellow, the last real Santa. 
After Goodfellow's caravan plummets to the earth during a thunderstorm, a kind boy named Ben, with nasty parents and a self-esteem problem, is bullied into knocking on the caravan's door.
He learns Goodfellow is in grave danger from Gerold Goblynch, a Santa who's crossed over to the dark side, embracing a commercialized Christmas and sending the reindeer to the meat-packing plant.
The wild explanations of Santa's operations and the scatological humor may appeal to kids who no longer believe, but younger children may be horrified at reindeer turned into salami, or frightened by Goblynch's giant Nutcracker henchmen.
Ages 9-12.(Oct.)BooklistNow that Funke's U.S.
name recognition is rock solid, it will surprise few to see her foreign backlist emerge in English editions.
In this illustrated Christmas novel originally published in Germany in 1994, short chapters tell of a grinchy takeover in Yule Land, where the region's crack team of Santas has been forced to submit to new, moneygrubbing policies.
A renegade good Santa recruits main character Ben and a lonely neighborhood girl to help topple the tyrant.
Many members of the chapter book audience will count themselves too worldly to truck with books about Santa, and for every glimmer of the invention that distinguishes Funke's later efforts, there are some odd notes, such as references to Ben's math difficulties that read like a gleeful endorsement of cheating.
Still, there are few Christmas-themed options for children wanting something more substantial than a picture book, and families seeking a seasonal, chapter-a-day readaloud will find the cookie-cutter storyline perfectly palatable alongside eggnog and gathered loved ones.
–Jennifer MattsonKirkusTwo children discover that Santa's not just one person when a brightly decorated wagon crashes down in their neighborhood shortly before Christmas.
Inside is Niklas Goodfellow, who explains to the astonished Ben and Charlotte that he's the only Santa left who gives out elf-manufactured toys; all of his compatriots are either under the thumb of the plutocratic Gerold Geronimus Goblynch, who distributes only commercialized goods, or they've been transformed into chocolate.
In illustrations that sometimes shoulder onto the next page, Howard depicts Niklas as a gent–so young that his work clothes include a false beard–who glows with kindness, and travels with three dozen surly, Keebler-like worker elves along with a pair of diminutive angels.
His determination to stay in the neighborhood until Christmas leads to a final confrontation with the un-jolly Goblynch.
Adding subplots in the form of a bully for Ben and loneliness for shy Charlotte, Funke engineers just deserts for Goblynch, then closes with a Christmas Day so filled with the proper spirit of wonder that even Ben's irascible dad succumbs.
The humor, plus some unusual character types, sets this apart from the general run of holiday tales.
(Fantasy.
10-12)

About the Author

Cornelia Funke is the internationally acclaimed, bestselling author of The Thief Lord, Dragon Rider, and the Inkheart trilogy, along with many other chapter and picture books for younger readers. 
She lives in Los Angeles, California, in a house filled with books.

From AudioFile

Author Cornelia Funke (INKHEART) reads this fantastical Christmas fable capably in her German-accented voice, sounding smoky and confiding (and a little like Lena Olin). 
One of the last "true" santas, Niklas Goodfellow, crash-lands in a small town, and his invisible, marzipan-loving reindeer, Twinklestar, goes missing.
Lonely kids Ben and Charlotte learn his identity, help save him from giant nutcrackers, and discover some real Christmas magic.
Funke gives distinguishing voices to many of the characters, particularly Niklas's comical entourage-- plump angels Matilda and Emmanuel and a caravan full of wee grumbly elves.
Get out the hot cocoa--this is charming seasonal listening for the whole family.
J.M.D.
© AudioFile 2006, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Tags

Children's Books,Holidays & Celebrations,Christmas,Books on CD

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Comment List (Total:15)

  •     This was not the best book that we have ever read, and not the best Cornelia Funke book, but it was certainly worth the time. She had a lot of interesting ideas about how Santa fits the toys into his sack, makes it snow, etc. I read it to my 7 year-old twins and their favorite part was the elves, who had a habit of "cursing", saying things like, "steaming reindeer poo" when they got angry. My 11 year-old said that he was too old for it, but he was mysteriously within hearing distance whenever I was reading. Worth the read.

  •     great

  •     This is simply a fun read out loud book for the kids. This was the second time reading to my son. We both enjoyed it every bit as much as the first time.

  •     This story is really fun! I bought a used book when I couldn't find it at the library anymore. It puts the entire Santa idea into a new light.

  •     Such a great, enjoyable book! RI read it twice and loved it even more the second time! Just amazing!

  •     Every year we read it again at Christmas time, because my children love it so much. It really is a wonderful, magical story and so different than most other " Santa stories...

  •     This is a wonderful Christmas time story. It was very much enjoyed by the kids and the adults reading it.

  •     Fantastic writer.

  •     This is a lovely little Christmas fable, which my daughters added happily to their library of favorite Christmas books. It was a bit scary for my then six-year-old, but even my 13-year-old enjoyed hearing it read aloud. Cornelia Funke never disappoints, and her willingness to depict both the main characters and their parents with all their shortcomings, coupled with her ability to give them a credible happy ending, keeps bringing us back for more.

  •     My son enjoyed this book. He was 10 at the time.

  •     I am a middle school librarian and bought this to supplement our Christmas books, and to have maybe a fun book for the students. Well judging by the number of kids who read it this past Christmas, I'd say it must be a pretty good book.

  •     Cornelia Funke writes the perfect holiday book for both children and adults! The storyline is clever and makes you smile practically the entire way through!The story is centered on Ben, a child that appears to be an underachiever, and Niklas Goodfellow, the last real Santa Clause. The evil Gerold Geronimus Goblynch is in charge of the Great Christmas Council and has outlawed the old ways magic was once used for children. Niklas Goodfellow's remaining friends, which consists of elves, angels, and a reindeer, have been banned and/or exterminated. Instead of utilizing these magical creatures, snowmobiles are replacing them forever. Any Santa who disagrees with the new rules is turned into Chocolate. While Niklas was supposed to be in hiding, his reindeer escapes while flying one night; thus, Santa falls to Earth! Now, it's up to Ben and his new friend Charlotte to help the last Santa.While this is an excellent story, Funke concludes with almost a bittersweet ending. Funke's character, Ben, doesn't seem to develop as the story progresses. Readers will assume Ben is maturing, but as the story continues, he seems to fall into old habits that classify him as the underachiever. It's quite unfortunate that Funke portrays almost every adult as being neglectful of their children yet somehow keeps the spirit of Christmas anticipatory for children! It's a wonderfully hilarious book but be warned that some characters never change (even with the spirit of Christmas).

  •     My daughter, who is 7, loves to hear my husband read to her, even though she can read it herself. She calls it "Daddy's book", and insists that he be the only one to read it to her. They bonded over the book. We borrowed it from a library initially but loved it so much that we ordered one from Amazon.

  •     Strange. I especially did not like that cheating in school was accepted as normal.

  •     Wonderful story ... my 10 & 12 year old girls love it!

 

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