25 Days – Book 11: Cranberry Christmas

Day 11 takes us to a cranberry bog with the smell of pine in the wind, and the frozen fresh water pond. Doing a quick check of the blog, I am shocked to realize that I never posted about Cranberry Thanksgiving here. I mentioned it in a storytime post, but considering it is a classic Thanksgiving holiday book for me, I feel remiss.

Cranberry Christmas is a part of the Cranberryport series by this husband and wife team. It is a silly and sweet story about the curmudgeonly Mr. Whiskers who is facing a gloomy holiday until Maggie and her grandmother help tidy up the house and solve the feud with his greedy neighbor. Enjoy the excitement of Cranberry Christmas by Wende and Harry Devlin, 1976.

Mr. Whiskers troubles are gloomy. Christmas is three days away and his pond, that should be full of skaters, is empty.

His neighbor is claiming ownership of the pond property. On top of that, Mr. Whiskers received a letter from his sister Sarah insisting that she was coming for a visit and he was to move in with her after the holiday. Mr. Whiskers rushes his troubles over to Maggie and Grandmother and the three set out to clean his home thoroughly.

It’s quite a surprise to Sarah when she arrives to a cozy, and tidy home; and an even bigger surprise to the greedy neighbor when all the cleaning turns up more than just spotless floors.

I love the Cranberry books so much for their mild drama, softhearted characters, and the Devlin’s lovely illustrations. While this book doesn’t feel all that much like a Christmas story except that it is set at Christmas, I think the tone of the story fits quite well. Fighting, greed, misplaced priorities all speak to the bigger issues surrounding the holiday. All the hard work is solved with a little friendship, care, and clever wit. Mr. Whiskers truly is “a wonder.”

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