Reviewed by Guest Reviewer Teresa Dahl

I love children’s books and especially children’s Christmas books. When I heard about Christmas Turtles from a dear friend of mine, I thought I’d order it and read it to my children this year. Every year, my family makes a tradition out of reading a particular book in the weeks leading up to Christmas, and taking a family photo for our holiday cards.

The author, Sara Ann Denson, based the story on her own childhood Christmas experiences. The lovely illustrations done by Tara McMillen will open up children’s imaginations as they discover each page of the book.

I was amazed that the story held their attention. It wasn’t just story time; it was story sharing time because we talked about each page and picture. They pointed out parts of the pictures and asked questions. We were all engrossed in the book.

This story is special because it’s about Sara Ann Denson’s own loving grandmother and her four grandchildren. Sara Ann remembers that each Christmas they celebrated a memorable tradition together at Grandma’s house.

To start the tradition the families would come to Grandpa’s farm during autumn to help plant the winter wheat. Grandma would gather the children around her on the front porch to crack pecans in the brisk fall air. They felt so special putting the pecan halves in the enchanted tin. After they filled the tin, Grandma would put the tin into the freezer where the elves would find it.

They anticipated returning at Christmas because in their absence the elves would magically make the pecans turn into “turtle” candy treats. Eventually, the children learned that their Grandma was actually the one making the turtles all along. Sara Ann then recognized her Grandma’s love for her family – she could not eat the turtles herself and always had aches and pains, but she knew the joy it brought her family.

This theme of love and serving your loved ones is the lesson to be learned from this well written story. Be careful when reading this book to have all the ingredients for Christmas turtles on hand. Luckily, the sweet candy turtle recipe is provided is in the back of the book, together with a neat wooden spoon. It has the words “Christmas Turtles” on the handle.

This heartwarming story should be pulled out every Christmas as it’s own tradition. My kids and I thoroughly enjoyed this book Christmas Turtles, and I hope you will enjoy it too! Merry Christmas!

Rating: 5/5

No review copy was provided. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.