Saving Santa review by Rdepaola
Age Range - 5 - 8
Genre - Fantasy

LitPick Review

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Age at time of review - 30
Reviewer's Location - Massapequa, NY, United States
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Saving Santa portrays a dystopian North Pole where technology and greed have overtaken the true spirit of Christmas. Lucy, who encompasses all that a Christmas elf should be, is sad to see all of the changes taking place in Santa Town. When she gets a job as Santa’s top elf, Lucy is determined to bring back the Christmas Spirit that Mrs. Claus once spread. Santa’s business partner, Rudy, on the other hand, has other plans. With the introduction of drones and robot elves, Rudy causes trouble just days before Christmas and leaves everyone, even Santa Claus, worried about losing their jobs. Will Lucy’s spirit alone be enough to save Christmas, or will Santa Town be forever changed? 


Saving Santa is not your average Christmas story! With an underlying message about the problems of living in a world centered around money, technology, and power, comes an action-packed story sure to captivate any reluctant reader. Arun Narayanan uses descriptive adjectives throughout this very detailed picture book.  Jessica Warrick’s illustrations align beautifully with the text, capturing the mood of each scene from the zombie-like state of the elves to the joyful Christmas spirit. Each page is filled with color from top to bottom, leaving minimal white space. The use of story panels adds to the pacing and overall style of the book. The addition of witty speech bubbles offers extra laughs, particularly for the reader with strong inferential skills. While the story is Christmas-themed, its depiction of weapons such as flamethrowers and lasers, is better suited for older children. Saving Santa will make a great addition to a holiday reading library, as well as a mentor text for countless writing lessons. 


Content Rating:

Content rating - some mature content

Explain your content rating: 

While this story is entertaining and aesthetically pleasing, the “violent” nature of the drones gives me pause. Additionally, there is reference to the death of a parent, as well as Mrs. Claus. I would suggest this story be shared with upper elementary students, or with mature readers.




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