Book Review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
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The Children’s Book Review
What to Expect: Christmas, inclusion, bullying, hope.
Not fitting in or being wanted is a secret fear that many children (and adults!) harbor. Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree reminds readers that caring for and including those who are forgotten, excluded, or overlooked is one of the essential values of Christmas.
Needles is the smallest Christmas tree on the lot. The other Christmas trees tease him and tell him he is too small to be a family Christmas tree, but Needles refuses to give up hope of making somebody’s Christmas joyful.
He keeps his hopes up even when the other trees get sold before him. He keeps his hopes up even when the family he is given to as a gift doesn’t want him. He even keeps hoping when he is placed on the road for anyone to take for free—although not giving up hope has become really difficult by this point. Then, a little girl named Emily sees him on Christmas Eve. Could this be Needles’ chance to find a home for Christmas?
Heartwarming and gently instructive, this story uses first-person narration to invite readers to share Needles’ emotions and perspectives. Beautiful, softly colored watercolor and pencil illustrations glow with winter magic, from the warm yellow of house lights to the sparkle of sunlight on snow. Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree is a lovely Christmas story, perfect reading for getting into the holiday mood.
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About the Author
Richard Wagner grew up in Southern California. When he was fourteen years old, a business friend of his father’s had a small Christmas tree delivered as a thank-you. Their family already had a large tree decorated in the house. Not being able to find anyone who needed a tree, that small Christmas tree stood outside by itself for the remainder of the Christmas holiday. Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree is a tribute to that little tree and what might have been, but more importantly, to all the beauty, goodness, and hope that Christmas brings to us all.
Mr. Wagner continues to reside in Southern California with his wife and two children.
For more information, visit https://needlesthechristmastree.com.
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