Santa's Worst Christmas

Author(s): Pania Tahau-Hodges; Bryony Walker

NZ Picture Books | NZ Book Awards for Children & Young Adults 2020 Shortlist | Christmas Books

There are just a few days to go before Christmas, and everyone’s busy putting up decorations, preparing food and getting ready for the big day. Then comes the shock news – Santa’s cancelled Christmas. Santa had so many disasters last year that he can’t face it again, and he’s quit. The elves try everything, but they can’t get him to change his mind. In this Aotearoa Christmas picture book, the kids come up with a clever plan and amazing gadgets to get Christmas back on and Santa back in the sleigh delivering presents. English Edition This is an Aotearoa New Zealand Christmas story, complete with jandals and the barbie, hangi and hot summer days, and Kiwi ingenuity. The children are the heroes of the story as they set to work and make gadgets to help Santa with each of the problems he encountered last Christmas, such as losing the sleigh keys, finding his Santa suit had `shrunk' (again), having trouble accessing his naughty and nice lists because of IT issues, and getting stressed out in celestial traffic jams. The story has the setting and trimmings of a Kiwi Christmas that children in the southern hemisphere will recognise. It is full of humour as Santa encounters glitches on his Christmas deliveries and the children make a survival kit for Santa by repurposing everyday objects.  This picture book is for children 4-8 years old. It is available in te reo Maori and English editions.

Ruth's Review: Everyone is busy getting ready for Christmas — shucking the paua, measuring the hangi pit and blowing up the pool. When...suffering sleigh bells!...Santa has quit. Last year Santa had so many problems (IT issues, lost keys, traffic jams) that he is just not prepared to face it again. It's up to a bunch of Kiwi kids to come up with a clever plan and amazing gadgets to get Christmas back on and Santa back in the sleigh. It's great to have a book about Christmas which is set here and in te reo Maori too. And this one is a real cracker!


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Product Information

Finalist for the Picture Book Awards and the Russell Clark Award for Illustration in the 2020 NZ Book Awards for Children and Young Adults

This book has been written by a team at Huia Publishers. HUIA has talented staff who are experienced in producing notable children's books. The illustrator is Isobel Joy Te Aho-White (Ngati Kahungunu, Ngai Tahu) who is a freelance graphic artist and illustrator. Isobel studied design at the Whanganui School of Design and Massey University and uses both digital and traditional media. She specialises in symbolism and metaphor, and her work is influenced by mythology and folk tales, botanical illustration and life experience.

General Fields

  • : 9781775503934
  • : Huia Publishers
  • : Huia Publishers
  • : October 2019
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Pania Tahau-Hodges; Bryony Walker
  • : Paperback
  • : Isobel Joy Te Aho-White
  • : 823.3
  • : 32