Friday, November 18, 2011

The Carpenter's Gift by David Rubel

Subtitle:  A Christmas Tale about the Rockefeller Center Tree.  This is a sweet tale of Christmas and caring.

Random House sent me a copy of this picture book for review (thank you).  It was published at the end of September, so you can pick up a copy at your local bookstore.

I grew up in Washington State and was not familiar with the Rockefeller Center Tree.  A friend in New York sent me a Christmas card with a picture of it, but I didn't know the history of it.

Mr. Rubel's story begin with the year it all started.  A father and his son are selling Christmas trees for a bit of money during the depression years.  One of his trees is chosen for the first tree decorated there.  The construction crew puts it up and everyone adds some homemade ornaments and calls it good.

Imagine the family's surprise when the construction crew shows up at the shack they have been living in with lumber and supplies and begins to build them a house!

This book was written in collaboration with Habitat for Humanity and I have to admit the story made me cry.  It can be so unexpected when someone does something good for you because they can, not because they have to.

Jim LaMarche is the illustrator and his work speaks to you.  The pictures are soft and pastel in colors, but the emotions on the character's faces talk to you.

Here is more info on what this book is trying to express:

-          tells the story of the first Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree.  The annual tree lighting ceremony is a cherished event that is televised nationally.  In 2011 it will be held on Wednesday, Nov. 30.
-          shines a light on Habitat for Humanity’s REAL annual tradition of using wood milled from the Rockefeller Center Tree to build a home for a family in need.
-          embodies the traditional holiday values of kindness, charity, and generosity.
-          offers a hopeful portrayal of life under financial hardship that will resonate with those affected by the current recession and inspire others to lend a helping hand.

Why not buy a copy of this book with a positive message and share it with the young ones in your life?  You could even go watch the tree lighting ceremony if you are close enough.  Or catch it on TV.

I hope everyone has a good Christmas.

Happy reading!

1 comment:

David Rubel said...

Jo Ann:

THank you for your most kind and thoughtful review!

David Rubel