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The Christmas Witch
     

The Christmas Witch

by Joanne Oppenheim, Annie Mitra (Illustrator)
 

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On the first Christmas, Befana missed her chance to go to Bethlehem to welcome the newborn Baby. Now, each year, the good Christmas Witch leaves cookies and gifts at the homes of sleeping children, still hoping to find the Christ Child. Perfect for early independent readers, this simple retelling captures all of the wonder of the Italian legend.

Overview

On the first Christmas, Befana missed her chance to go to Bethlehem to welcome the newborn Baby. Now, each year, the good Christmas Witch leaves cookies and gifts at the homes of sleeping children, still hoping to find the Christ Child. Perfect for early independent readers, this simple retelling captures all of the wonder of the Italian legend.

Editorial Reviews

Carolyn Phelan
Using short phrases in large type, this little picture book retells the Italian legend of Befana. An old woman feared by her neighbors, Befana spends her lonely life cooking and cleaning. When the three kings seeking the Christ child stop at her house to ask directions, they offer to take her to see the baby, too, but Befana reluctantly declines, saying she has no gift to take. She continues to clean house, then makes some cookies and a doll. Later that night, and every Christmas thereafter, she searches in vain for the star of Bethlehem and the Christ child and delivers cookies and toys to sleeping children. With simple, rounded forms and patterns of repeated shapes, the colorful illustrations have an innocent, childlike air. Appealing holiday fare for kids who have some reading skills but still enjoy stories in the beginning-reader format.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780553093926
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
11/01/1993
Series:
Bank Street Ready-To-Read Series
Pages:
48

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