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First Dog's White House Christmas Review by Courtney Larson

By J. Patrick Lewis and Beth Zappitello
Sleeping Bear Press
27500 Drake Road
Farmington Hills, MI 48331-3535

First Dog's White House Christmas is a delightful picture book that explores the Christmas customs and traditions of other countries through the eyes of the White House dog. This book begins with Dog adding the word "canine" in front of "guest" on the White House Christmas Gala invitations. He then wanders through the White House, giving the reader a small tour of the White House at Christmastime. Shortly after, the guests start arriving, and the reader is introduced to several dog guests from around the world. Each dog tells something about Christmas in its home country. There are well known breeds, such as the Chihuahua from Mexico who tells about the tradition of breaking a piñata at Christmastime, along with less common dogs, such as the Kangal dog from Turkey, who explains the story behind the historical Saint Nicholas.

The illustrations in First Dog's White House Christmas are beautiful and inviting. The story is fun and interesting--a fabulous Christmas read-aloud. It could also easily serve as the basis for a unit study covering geography and different cultures and traditions. First Dog's White House Christmas is a wonderful addition to any family's home library.

Product review by Courtney Larson, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, March 2011