Santa's Cookie Elf
Author: Richard Thomas Parrette, Jr.
Illustrator: Muideen Ogunmola
High Hopes Publishing
Publication Date: August 21, 2013
(Originally published August 20, 2012)
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This is one of those "how hard could it be?" books. As in, it appears to have been created by someone who was a big fan of such children's classics as "The Night Before Christmas" and thought, "How hard could it be to write my own children's Christmas classic?" The answer is "harder than this." Santa's Cookie Elf is all rhyme and no substance. It's the uncharming story of an elf that follows Santa around eating all the leftover cookies. The illustrations are equally charmless. It's not that they're poorly drawn, just that they lack heart. The publisher's website (speaking of...no one likes the term "vanity publisher" but High Hopes Publishing does seem to have a pricing structure for authors, so draw your own conclusions) says that the illustrator works in the graphics department at Reebok. I'm not sure what to make of that, but this book--illustrations, text and story--are all a complete miss.