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The House of Wooden Santas

TitleThe House of Wooden Santas
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication1997
AuthorsMajor, Kevin, Imelda George, and Ned Pratt
PublisherRed Deer College Press
CityAlberta, Canada
ISBN Number0889951667
DescriptorsArt; Chapter Book; Christmas; Community; English Language; Nova Scotia; Photographs; Poverty; School; Unemployment

Jesse's mother, who has been unemployed for some time, decides to move to a small town by the ocean to start a business selling wooden carvings. Jesse is unhappy in his new school, frustrated with his mother's project, and uncertain whether he even believes in Santa Claus anymore. As this advent book counts down the days until Christmas, Jesse makes a new friend, finds a place for himself in the community, and even manages to win the heart of their curmudgeonly landlady as he discovers the true spirit of Christmas. This chapter book by Newfoundland author Kevin Major is illustrated with photographs of wooden Santa carvings made by Imelda George, an artist from Nova Scotia.


Newfoundland and Labrador; Nova Scotia

Age Range


Author Profile: 

In the House of Wooden Santas is a holiday story following the struggles of nine-year old Jesse and his mother, as financial difficulties force them to move from the city and to a small town. Jesse is not subtle in expressing his frustration toward the move, their financial struggles, and having to make new friends, so in an effort to combat his downtrodden mood, Jesse's mother begins carving him a wooden Santa for each day in December until Christmas. The Santas represent the various struggles and emotions Jesse must overcome, and also represent the lingering financial hope of the small family as the carvings are their only means of income. When Jesse and his mother are faced with the threat of eviction, Jesse and his new friend try to use the magic of the Santas and Christmas to help find a solution. In the House of Wooden Santas is a picture book - the pictures are photos (Ned Pratt) of Imelda George's wood carved Santas. The story that accompanies the pictures is a detailed, third-person narrative, and has more text than average picture books.