Aimed towards 5-8 year old readers, it’s been a while since I read a children’s book simply for pleasure. I’ve known Keris a l-o-n-g time and followed her writing journey with interest (and much envy, I have to add) so I’ve read almost all her books.
I’m a sentimental old pongo and the minute I read the blurb for ‘Lily and the Christmas Wish’:
“Christmas is fast approaching and the town of Pinewood has decided to do something really special to celebrate: each person will write down a secret wish and tie it to the town’s Christmas tree!
Nine year old Lily isn’t quite convinced. She’s not sure that she believes in wishes coming true – although she really wants to.
But then a strange storm blows in, scattering all the wishes… and Lily wakes up to find her adorable pug puppy, Bug, can talk! It’s a wish come true – only it isn’t Lily’s wish…”
I was excited with the concept of this happening. Heck, I’d even do it aged … well beyond 5-8 and couldn’t wait to get my hands on it, hoping it’d turn my general festive ennui around – a bit like how it sounded Lily felt too.
The story is great; I could see it happening on a screen with tinkling sleigh bells and Lily rushing around with her brother Jimmy and friend Esme, the cheeky chatty pug, Bug, racing alongside them trying to work out who got whose wish and how they can straighten evrything out in their mixed-up town. I loved the interactions between Lily and Bug, I loved Lily’s dad on his barge and I especially loved the woman who woke up able to only sing everything she wanted to say – great stuff!
I’d make this a Christmas bedtime-reading treat for any child, reading the first part during the run-up to Christmas Eve and the last part on the Eve itself. It’s fun, it’s thoughtful, emotions are sensitively handled and Lily is adorable and ‘real’ : she has hopes, she has fears – but most of all she has a talking dog! What’s not to love?!
9/10 – A magical Christmas treat for ANY age (especially 40+ Grinches) 🙂