The Story of Holly and Ivy

One of my personal Christmas traditions is to find an hour when I’m all alone in the house, and spend it reading my favorite Christmas book, The Story of Holly and Ivy by Rumer Godden. My edition has illustrations by Barbara Cooney, which are every bit as important as the text.

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It is a story about wishing. That’s all I can say to describe it. The illustrations, though, are so dreamy… let me show you.

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Please sir, may I spend a Christmas in this English market town? May I live in one of the little row houses? May I put a small, real tree in my dining room window and decorate it with silver crackers and real candles? May I fill stockings with old fashioned toys, nuts, and tangerines wrapped in silver paper?

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This book is so wonderful. You should try it. It took me about an hour and fifteen minutes to read to myself, so I wouldn’t count on reading it out loud all in one go. But that’s all right. There is a lot of Christmas left.

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