The Girl Who Saved Christmas – Matt Haig

Published By: Canongate
Pages: 329
Released On: 03/11/2016

If magic has a beginning, can it also have an end?

When Amelia wants a wish to come true she knows just the man to ask – Father Christmas.

But the magic she wants to believe in is starting to fade, and Father Christmas has more than impossible wishes to worry about. Upset elves, reindeers dropping out of the sky, angry trolls and the chance that Christmas might be cancelled.

But Amelia isn’t just any ordinary girl. And – as Father Christmas is going to find out – if Christmas is going to be saved, he night not be able to do it alone.

*****

Whilst the first book in Matt’s Christmas series was very fantastical theatrical, this is more real and cruel and human, but no less magical. What I love about this book – and the first and no doubt the third – is amongst the magic of Santa and the elves, Haig doesn’t hide the scepticism and cruelty that humanity can bring. It’s not all sweetness and light – it’s a real story wrapped up in a magical gift.

Having a cameo of Charles Dickens was a nice touch for a Dickens-obsessive like me. I can just imagine he would be the kind of man to help Santa out. If I had my way, I would have more scenes with him in, particularly in physically helping Father Christmas, but he was a joyful addition.

The illustrations were even more whimsical than the first one. They’re simple but excellent at adding a little extra character to the story – particularly for the young readers.

I’ve already leant out the first book to my nephew, and I think they,k become an annual read in the run-up to Christmas.

This lovely book reinstates the importance of believing, and the importance of the magic of Christmas.

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