Tuesday, December 03, 2019

Christmas in Camelot

Osborne, Mary Pope. Magic Tree House Deluxe Holiday Edition: Christmas in Camelot
October 1st 2019 by Random House Books for Young Readers
Copy provided by the publisher

Jack and Annie get an invitation from "M" to spend Christmas in Camelot, which excites them since they haven't heard from Morgan much lately. They manage to travel there without a book, wishing on the letter. Once there, they find out that things are not good in the kingdom, since the joy has all been sucked out of the area. King Arthur and Morgan are both stymied, since the brave knights were unable to travel to the Otherworld to make things right. When the Christmas Knight appears, he insists that Jack and Annie are up to the task. He gives them verses to help them, and sends them on their way. They manage to rescue the knights, but will they be able to bring joy back to Camelot? This is Magic Tree House #29, but Merlin Missions #1.
Strengths: My own personal children adored this series, which starts with Dinosaurs Before Dark (1992). There is something appealing about Jack and Annie being able to travel to different points in history and get home before anyone knows they are gone. It's not a surprise that my daughters also liked Voyagers! These have about the same premise: travel into the past and fix things. These new illustrations, and the larger size, are both very appealing, and I can see this being a great gift for big fans of the series. There are a lot of reasons that this series sells 20,000 copies a week!
Weaknesses: The Merlin Missions always seemed extra trippy to me, and isn't Morgan le Fay somewhat evil in most Camelot stories?
What I really think: I'm having a hard time personally with the publicity information that talks about "parents who grew up with Magic Treehouse and want to share the adventure with their kids", but there is no denying that these are absolute must-haves for all elementary school libraries and classrooms, and public libraries will want to buy multiple copies of this edition to add to their seasonal books.

1 comment:

  1. My daughter and I really enjoyed reading some of the books in this series when she was a kid. Glad to see some new books are being published in the series.