The Twelve Days of Christmas in Colorado —
Written by Linda Ashman and Illustrated by Dawn Beacon, Sterling Children's Books, 2011
Suitable for: Ages 5 and up
Theme/Topics: Holiday, educational
Opening: The book begins with a letter to Sophie about her upcoming visit to Colorado from her "favorite cousin" Zach.
Brief Synopsis: From the dust jacket —
"Ready to greet you are 12 skiers swooshing, 11 horses prancing, 10 covered wagons, 9 woven baskets ... and much more from the Centennial State.
Zach is so excited about his cousin Sophie's visit to Colorado that he gives her one of these VERY unusual gifts on each of the twelve days of Christmas, and Sophie writes lively letters home to tell her mom and dad all about her trip. Lucky readers are in for a wild Christmas countdown!"
Link to resources: In addition to the information provided about Colorado through Sophie's letters to her parents, the book includes Colorado facts such as the state tree, bird and fossil as well as some famous Coloradans. Linda Ashman shares some thoughts about the book here.
This book is part of a series called Twelve Days of Christmas, State by State from Sterling Children's Books.
Why I chose this book: This is actually the second time I've chosen this book. When Julie Hedlund interviewed Linda on her blog recently, I raised my hand saying "Pick me! I want this book."
Why? I attended a picture book retreat Linda taught in July. She's great at rhyme and storytelling. Plus, I'm not a Colorado native, so I knew I would learn something. Christmas arrived early at my house when I received this book.
For now, Enzo and I are skipping the letters Sophie writes. They are packed with a lot of information and intended for an older audience. At 18 months, my son is amused by the shorter parts. He follows the gifts through the twelfth day without a problem.
This book will make a fun gift year round to other families, who are new to Colorado. You might be able to find one in the series focusing on your state.
If you get a book, please let me know if your state has a state fossil. I'm excited to know Colorado's fossil is the stegosaurus. This detail just makes me smile.