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Christmas Surprise

Written by Hilary Robinson

Illustrated by Mandy Stanley

Part of the The Copper Tree Series

Featured Books for 5+ readers Featured Books for 7+ readers

LoveReading View on Christmas Surprise

Get into the Spirit of Christmas!  The children of Copper Tree class are getting ready for Christmas when an invitation arrives to visit the residents of the Pine Lodge care home. The children think of all the different things they like to do that might entertain the old people and have a very happy day out spent singing, storytelling, putting up home-made decorations and dressing up. It’s a lovely story, guaranteed to bring a smile to everyone’s face – cheeky Alfie Tate even finds a donkey to take! It also gently teaches children about the elderly, and shows them that the different generations have got much more in common than they might have thought.

Andrea Reece

Other Info

Author Hilary Robinson says “Christmas Surprise is a great way to encourage children to consider and have fun with the elderly people in their lives.  Their grandparents or elderly neighbours and friends were all young once, and often have a wealth of knowledge and fascinating life stories to impart. In the spirit of Christmas this book does just that!  The book is also a gentle reminder that as much pleasure can be gained from giving as well as receiving.”

Christmas Surprise Synopsis

We're all children at heart, as Copper Tree class discover when they help the elderly people at their local care home get ready for Christmas. They have fun thinking of ways to make the residents' Christmas special - and delight in finding out about their lives. And there is a lovely surprise at the end, thanks to Pine Lodge pets, Bonnie, Bobby and Bess.

All the books in the Copper Tree series are previewed by experts in the related field who offer their advice. These include childcare professionals, teachers, psychologists, counsellors and families affected by the issues covered.

The plight of the elderly has been very much at the forefront of the news this year.  Yet, there are more than 10 million people in the UK over the age of 65 and 3 million of those are over 80.  Concern has been raised that they are often considered the forgotten generation in a society that is regarded by many as too focused on youth. 

Christmas Surprise Press Reviews

"The book gently touches on areas of experience and facts about ageing which may be new or difficult for children, and those who read with them, and encourages thoughtful refletion in a positive and helpful way." Rev Canon Ann Easter. Chaplain to Her Majesty The Queen.

Praise for the Copper Tree class series:

"This book represents a celebration of a child’s right to be heard and for explanations to be tailored to meet their needs. Written in simple language with a gentle nuance of humour and love, Tom’s Sunflower is a teeny triumph."  Peter B. Forster, Chartered Counselling Psychologist  

"Hilary Robinson and Mandy Stanley create ground breaking picture books that deal with topical issues in a very sensitive way." Ruth Humphreys, children’s book specialist, librarian and storyteller.  

“It is so refreshing for a series of children’s books to cover such challenging social issues in such a sensitive manner, and so beautifully illustrated too.”  Lorraine Kelly

“Inspiring” Fiona Phillips

“Charming” Joanna Lumley

“Book of the Week”   YOU magazine, Mail on Sunday

“There are lots of important issues raised by this story, all covered gently and sensitively” Juno 

“This is a thoughtful story… vibrant and colourful pictures are in tune with the words” Carousel magazine

“Sensitively handled and beautifully produced, this gentle and reassuring text with expressive illustrations will provide help to children facing bereavement in a number of different situations’.
Books for Keeps

"the best collaboration between an author and illustrator I have ever seen."  Jo Cumming, former bookbuyer for W H Smith. 

“This beautifully illustrated book is aimed at children between the ages of four and seven. It would be a rewarding book to read alongside your child to help them with their understanding of adoption.” Adoption Today Magazine

“Soft pencil and watercolour illustrations create a gentle and comforting atmosphere in which children can explore ideas of love, family and belonging.” Little Parachutes

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780957124516
Publication date: 04/10/2012
Publisher: Strauss House Productions
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780957124516
Publication date: 4th October 2012
Author: Hilary Robinson
Illustrator: Mandy Stanley
Publisher: Strauss House Productions
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 32 pages
Suitable for: 5+ readers, 7+ readers

About Hilary Robinson

Hilary Robinson is an award winning radio producer and author of over 50 picture books. Awards include the 2016 Historical Young Quills Award for ‘Flo of the Somme.’ Radio credits include Private Peaceful for BBC Radio 2 and her series for Barry Humphries Forgotten Musical Masterpieces was listed as one of the top 30 artistic triumphs of 2016 by the Telegraph. Extracts from her book 'A Song For Will and the Lost Gardeners of Heligan' were read on BBC Radio 4. Follow her on Instagram here. Read a Q&A with the author here.

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