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Merry Christmas, Amelia Bedelia
Written by Peggy Parish, illustrated by Lynn Sweat
My rating: ★★★½
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Date of publication: August 18, 1986
Age: Grades 1 - 3
Themes: Christmas, holiday prep, humor, play on words
On Christmas Eve, Amelia Bedelia has to get the Rogers house ready for a visit from Aunt Myra. But as usual, Amelia takes directions literally and turns the house upside down delicious. She makes a cake with lots of dates, stuffs the stockings, and figures out the perfect star for the top of the tree.
Amelia Bedelia is a classic and beloved character. There's not a whole lot I can add, but I'll mention my favorite aspects anyway. This specific book in the series is a personal favorite--one I grew up with. In fact, I can say, as I child, I was confused about the date cake (I didn't even know "dates" were a food until years later, ha!). So, with that in mind, I'd say that Amelia Bedelia books are much more successful when a child can read the book and discuss it with an adult. It's a prime opportunity to learn about homonyms. I should've asked my mom what dates were...
The simple illustrations fit the story—straightfoward and literal. It's hard not to like them. The text and vocabulary? It is a bit more difficult. With a fair bit of text on each page, and with over 60 pages, it's not the easiest reader, but a good stepping stone to chapter books. I'd definitely recommend the series, especially with the even-better modern Amelia Bedelia books (both readers and chapter books) that are reaching a whole new generation. Love 'em all.
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