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Review: How Winston Delivered Christmas

A Christmas Story in Twenty-Four-And-A-Half Chapters By Alex T. Smith

Cover of the book 'How Winston Delivered Christmas'
'How Winston Delivered Christmas' by Alex T. Smith

Is there anything more exciting for a child than the anticipation of Christmas? In this rather hefty story book, Alex T. Smith sets out to make sure that the month of December is full of festive excitement. 'How Winston Delivered Christmas' is not just a regular story book, but a story advent calendar, delivering a different chapter and some additional Christmas surprises for each day of December, up to, and including, Christmas Day.

The story begins as Christmas approaches and we meet Oliver, a young boy whose parents own a toy store, as he dashes to post his letter to Father Christmas, hoping that he isn't too late sending it. Just when Oliver is posting the letter, he hears his mum calling him to help at their busy shop, so he dashes off, only for his letter to be lifted by 'a shimmer of winter magic' out of the post box and into the path of our hero, Winston.

Winston the mouse finds the envelope

Poor little Winston is a mouse living out in the cold on Mistletoe Street as Christmas approaches. While searching for something warm to wear and a dry piece of paper to sleep under, Winston discovers Oliver's envelope and cannot believe his luck! On closer examination, he realises that the envelope he was about to burrow into for the night is actually a letter to Father Christmas which has somehow fallen out of the post box. As it is already the 23rd of December, kindly Winston decides to take the letter to the North Pole himself, so that the child who wrote the letter won't wake up without any presents. But, first, he needs to find out exactly where the North Pole is!

This is such an enchanting and charming tale of kindness! I really loved Alex T. Smith's vivid descriptions of the town, shops, food and all of the cosiness depicted as we follow poor, cold Winston on his selfless journey to deliver Oliver's letter. The bakery was so magically described that you can almost smell the gingerbread and cakes that the hungry little mouse has to resist on his mission to deliver the letter.

Alex T. Smith is an award winning illustrator and his delightful illustrations are coloured in such warm tones and you can just feel the cosy glow of the houses and shops throughout the story. Winston meets lots of helpful and quirky characters who add lots of humour. We learn about kindness, friendship and bravery throughout this wonderful story. However, this is not only a story book!

Each chapter of 'How Winston Delivered Christmas' is accompanied with exciting extras to make the festive season even more fun. There are Christmas recipes, instructions for making decorations, ideas for homemade presents and facts about how Christmas is celebrated around the world, as well as the words to lots of favourite Christmas carols and much, much more!

This is a beautiful book and fantastic story filled with wonderful ideas to help make December even more exciting. If you haven't read it yet, why not start a new Christmas tradition?

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