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The Children’s Book Blog Christmas Countdown: The Nightmare Before Christmas by Tim Burton

Rebecca Davies

24 The Nightmare Before Christmas 300x247 The Children’s Book Blog Christmas Countdown: The Nightmare Before Christmas by Tim BurtonFor December I’ve decided to turn the children’s book blog into a sort of literary advent calendar. Every day of the month I’ll be posting a short recommendation of a wintry or Christmassy children’s book to warm your cockles or, in some cases, chill the blood. There’ll be something for readers of all ages, from picture books all the way up to YA. My choice for Christmas Eve is Tim Burton’s ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’.

I was going to go for the obvious and recommend ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas today, but then the 20-year anniversary picture book of Tim Burton’s anti-Christmas tale landed on my doormat and I just couldn’t resist.

It’s not so much the story that attracts me to the book – for that, you’re much better off watching the stop-animated film, directed by the very talented Henry Selick. However, Burton’s charmingly macabre illustrations and witty gothicisms are well worth revisiting in book form, and this new edition includes a few sketches that have never been seen before.

The direct parody of Clement Clarke Moore’s Christmas classic poem is also rather entertaining – instead of dreaming of dancing sugar-plums, the children in this rendition of the tale dream of monsters and skeleton heads. I know which I would have found more interesting as a nine-year-old. And it’s not the sugar-plums.

Right, I’m off to leave my mince pies out for Santa now, but I’ll be back in January with more children’s book recommendations, author Q&As and more. In the meantime…

Merry Christmas!

Rebecca Davies is a journalist and children’s author. She is currently working on a Young Adult fantasy novel set in Hackney. You can follow her on Twitter as @TheStoryMonster

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