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The Night Before Christmas in Africa
by Jesse, Hannah and Carroll Foster
Illustrated by Jean Christodoulou
The Night Before Christmas in Africa is a delightful take on the old story "Twas the Night Before Christmas". The poetry of the story has the same sing-song quality but the story is truly different. The characters are African's from a tribe living in the desert and longing for rain but can Santa really bring rain - let's find out!
Summary of the book:
On the arid South African plain, families sleep on the floor mats waiting for Father Christmas to arrive with his bag of goodies. However, members of the Shangaan tribe only wish for simple items such as candy, soccer balls and chickens during the holiday season.
(Note: what a difference from our yearly wishes for commercial items such as the Wii, the newest toys and things we seriously don't need. Hmmm?)
They long for relief from the hot, dry climate, but they dare not bother the man in red with such a large request. When his donkey cart arrives, pulled by kudu and a black rhinoceros, Father Christmas is willing to try. Don't American children wish for snow on Christmas?
Written by a mother and her 2 children (who live in Africa), this book and the beautiful illustrations show life in Africa. With traditional garments, daily life is shown in pictures, actual african words taken from several of the African languages and you actually see the children dreaming about monkeys that chatter and roar.
This story began as a family Christmas project when the Foster children, Hannah and Jesse, asked why there were no stories about Christmas in Africa. They took a family favorite poem, ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, and adapted it to the climate and culture of Africa. The story grew over months. The kudu were named after friends in Hannah’s grade 4 class, the gifts were all Jesse’s contribution, and mom Carroll put it all together.
Time went by and next door neighbor Jean Christodoulou heard about the story and offered her artistic talents to illustrate. Each picture was a work of art and it seemed the time had come to share this story with the world.
The CD:The story needed ‘telling’ with sounds and songs and a beautiful rich deep African narrator voice. Victor Masondo and Joe Arthur put their talents into creating the narration and sound track and the Sparrow Foundation School choir sang the traditional songs. Ed Jordan’s ‘African Christmas’ adds the finishing touch to this celebration of the wonder and beauty of Christmas and Africa.
Sparrow Foundation Schools:Each book sold contributes to the education of a remedial student at this amazing school in Johannesburg SA. For more information on the school and how you can be involved go to www.sparrowschools.co.za.
To purchase the book & CD ($11.99), go to: Night Before Christmas in Africa, The (Night Before Christmas Series)
Pelican Publishing has generously offered 4 of my readers a copy of the book (sans CD). Here's what you can do to enter:
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This drawing will take place on Black Friday (11/27) around 10 pm by random.org. The winner will have 48 hours to respond with their address (no PO Boxes pls) and must not have been drawn for any other giveaways from Pelican Publishing within the last 90 days, sorry this drawing is limited to the US. I received a copy of the Night Before Christmas book for review purposes. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."