25 Days – Book 23: The Christmas Pageant

Three more days until Christmas, which means three more books in our Advent countdown! Today we have another fun book by Tomie dePaola, that is an illustrated version of a play about the Nativity story. It is such a fun concept to draw characters having a play and I love all the ways dePaola pictures the set and costumes. Here is The Christmas Pageant by Tomie dePaola, 1978.

The text is taken from the Christmas stories in Matthew and Luke with some picture book friendly alterations. There is a good bit of text, but it works well for the narration. My favorite part, as I said earlier, is dePaola’s depiction of different props. The sheep on wheels crack me up! And I love the diversity of the angel choir!


I do like some of the edits made to the Biblical text, although I’m not sure they were entirely necessary. I had to smile at the angels telling the shepherds, “God is wonderful, and all people will be filled with peace.”


This is a sweet illustrated version of the Christmas story to add a new dimension to the retelling. Tomie dePaola always has such lovely compositions and rounded figures. As it says in the intro, “Let this birth of Love have new meaning for us all. Let the pageant begin…”

Follow along our book adventure at 25 Days of Christmas Books 2014!

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