Parents' Guide to

A Christmas Sonata

By Matt Berman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 7+

A dying boy wants to believe in Santa.

Book Gary Paulsen Holiday 2005
A Christmas Sonata Poster Image

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Kids say (1):

Though what little action there is comes slowly, many children will be fascinated by the period details. The daylong train trip and the uncle's country store, both lovingly described, are relics of an earlier time, though the rest of the story is timeless. The loss and recovery of faith, though only in Santa Claus, is universal.

As always, Gary Paulsen tells his story in clear, unadorned prose, stripped to the bones of memory and feeling. For once he has an illustrator who matches his style with simple, lucid pencil drawings. But unlike most of Paulsen's work, this is a gentle story, without action or great drama, the kind your grandfather might tell you before you drop off to sleep.

Book Details

  • Author: Gary Paulsen
  • Illustrator: Leslie Bowman
  • Genre: Holiday
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: Yearling Books
  • Publication date: December 19, 2005
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 7 - 11
  • Number of pages: 76
  • Last updated: July 12, 2017

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