Reviews for Tom the Christmas Elf

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2013 Spring
Tom, the tiniest elf, sneaks onto Santa's sleigh. When he's mistaken for Santa, Tom has to do some quick thinking to bring the family presents. This Swiss import captures the simple magic of Christmas. Soft watercolor illustrations complement the gentle story with its familiar message that giving is the best gift.

Kirkus Reviews 2012 September #1
In yet another story about stowaways in Santa's sleigh, a young elf and his dog have an adventure together on Christmas Eve. Tom is just learning to help out in Santa's workshop. He hides under a blanket among the presents piled in the sleigh and, after take-off, is surprised to find his dog, Tucker, hiding there as well. The elf, his dog and the blanket fall out of the sleigh and are stranded in a snowy, rural area near a single house. Tom leaves the blanket and his hat as a gift for the family celebrating Christmas inside the house, and Santa mysteriously returns to collect the elf and his dog. The story, first published in Switzerland, is a little too long and wordy, with a chatty, old-fashioned tone that doesn't do justice to the lovely watercolor illustrations. The snowy, starlit views of Santa's sleigh in flight are gorgeous examples of watercolor at its best, and Tom and his dog are charming little characters who deserve a shorter, more succinct story. Vainio is a talented illustrator who needs to polish his texts to match his attractive paintings. (Picture book. 3-6) Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

School Library Journal Reviews 2012 October

K-Gr 2--Tom, a curious young elf, decides to stow away in his boss's sleigh to see what happens on Santa's journey. He quickly discovers he's not the only stowaway-his dog, Tucker, is also hiding under the big wool blanket. A mishap strands them near an isolated house; to avoid possible discovery, they leave the wool blanket and Tom's red hat as gifts for the children who live at the house. Santa does swing by after his rounds to pick them up-he's not happy that they endangered themselves, but does commend Tom's generosity; after which they head back to the North Pole for dinner. The text is a little clunky and the illustrations are pleasant if uninspired.--Mara Alpert, Los Angeles Public Library

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