The After Christmas Tree / Dinosaur Christmas!

The After Christmas Tree
Bethan Welby
Scallywag Press

Here’s a debut picture book festive story with a difference: it features a little boy named Brian who comes upon a discarded Christmas tree by the roadside while out walking with an adult one grey January day. Feeling sorry for the abandoned tree he takes it home, promising to care for it.

However, once back indoors he’s the only member of his family who is pleased about his find, particularly as he moves it around wherever he goes.

By bedtime even Brian is feeling unhappy and Mum offers to help him take it outside. However, the boy insists on doing the job himself and it’s left outside in the snow overnight.

Brian meanwhile has an anxious night but when sleep finally comes, he has a wonderful dream – or is it? …
Both words and pictures are presented with sensitivity: the telling is straightforward leaving plenty of room for Bethan’s expressive illustrations to do much of the talking and with a knowledge of the huge number of Christmas trees that are merely thrown out every year, the message about sustainability is clear and important.

Dinosaur Christmas!
Penny Dale
Nosy Crow

Penny Dale’s terrific dinosaur team are back and now it’s Christmas Eve and they’re called to the aid of Santa. In order to rescue him they have to make their way through a swirling, whirling snowstorm. Be they at the wheel of a snow plough crunching over the snowy road, whizzing along on snowmobiles, zooming Whoosh! Whoosh! over the water on a hovercraft or chugga chugging in search of Santa’s house,

the crew will be there in the nick of time to unearth (or un-snow) the old man’s sleigh and make sure he’s suitably fuelled with seasonal fare. Then with presents duly loaded (courtesy of the helicopter dinosaurs), it’s up and away with a Ho! Ho! Ho! leaving the dinosaurs time to make their own preparations for the big day. Will Santa be kind to them too?

Young dino. fans will thoroughly enjoy the return of the prehistoric brigade showing their manoeuvres in new forms of locomotion for the festive season.

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