By: Jane Gerencher
Illustrated by: Michael Patch
Publisher: Inkwell Productions
Publication Date: June 2012
Reviewed by: Ellen Feld
Review Date: May 7, 2013
Santa is VERY tired. He’s had quite a night, delivering presents to all the good boys and girls around the world. Returning home, there’s nothing he’d like better than to slip on his comfy slippers, sip hot chocolate, and get a hug from his favorite kitty, Sugar.
Sugar is an absolutely adorable cat, with an irresistible expression and a fluffy, pure white coat that blends perfectly with the white trim of Santa’s red coat. Sugar is loved by everybody, and expertly cared for by Nugget, an elf whose sole job it is to take care of the cat. Nugget did try other jobs, such as painting toys and feeding reindeer, but he never lasted long at any job because, while he tried really, really hard, he always fumbled the task. Caring for Sugar, however, has been the perfect job for him and he is proud to see to every need of the cat.
Back to the story…on that particular Christmas Eve, while Santa, Mrs. Claus and Nugget headed from the sleigh to the house, Sugar ran to the sleigh. Finding Santa’s hat, the cat snuggled with it and took a much needed nap. Meanwhile, one of the elves came running into the house to show Santa a present that had not been delivered to a little girl. Santa knew that the youngster truly deserved the gift, so he ordered his reindeer harnessed and off they went. Shortly after Santa disappeared from view, Nugget noticed that Sugar was gone. Would he be able to find Sugar or had he failed yet another job?
Santa’s Sugar is a really fun, original story that I truly enjoyed reading. It has Christmas, a cute elf who tries so very hard, a kitty that you’ll want to bring home and oh, yes, a little mystery about a missing cat. At 51 pages, with not too much text per page and lots and lots of fantastic illustrations, it’s a good ‘read-together’ for young fans of Santa. It is also the ideal length for youngsters who are not quite ready for chapter books, although I suspect even those who can read above this level will choose this book for a bedtime story. And about those illustrations - did I mention they’re great? They capture the mood of Christmas and the love of the season perfectly. Wrap it all up and it’s a wonderful Christmas gift for your young reader.
Quill says: A truly original Christmas story that teaches responsibility, and more importantly, that there is a special purpose for each of us.