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Everyone dreads the flu season. The aches, the pains, the sour stomach, the fever, and the chills—nothing about catching the flu is fun. When a child gets sick, they tend to miss school while they recover. Any schoolwork is made up when their symptoms subside. When an adult becomes ill, they take a day off from work. When a reindeer gets ill, they can't call in sick to work. Their job is to pull Santa's sleigh, and without his trusted reindeer, Santa's sleigh is grounded, and presents go undelivered. This terrifying scenario is what Santa is facing in The Christmas Camel. 
Dancer has an upset stomach. Prancer is suffering from a terrible headache. Even Dasher is feeling the under the weather. Donner and Blitzen are on the mend but can't pull Santa's sleigh alone. They need flight companions to make Christmas happen! An SOS was issued to every animal around the world. Who would step up to help Jolly Saint Nick? 
None of the animals was willing to fly all night to help Santa until the unlikeliest animal of all, the camel, volunteers. Children will laugh at the unlikely choice and of Rudolph passing the torch (red nose) to them. 
All of the illustrations of the sick reindeer were sad but sweet. I smiled at one reindeer drinking a warm tonic while its hooves were soaking in a pit of hot liquid. The other image of a reindeer holding onto its stuffed reindeer while it slept was endearing. (Illustrations by Zoe Saunders)
The Christmas Camel by Susan Permut will delight children and readers everywhere while emphasizing the importance of teamwork and helping those in need. The numerous animal illustrations will allow parents to teach young ones the various names of wild animals.
I recommend caregivers share this festive picture book with their child(ren) this holiday season. Recommended reading age is 1-9. 



Midwest Book Review


Suzie Housley


It’s just two days before Christmas, and what is Santa to do when all his reindeer come down with the flu? The sleigh's packed with children's gifts, and he's ready to get on the road but finds himself grounded without his reindeer.  


Santa can envision all the unhappy children if he can't find a quick solution. He enlists his trustworthy elves' aid to try to devise a brew to rid the reindeer of their ailments. Unfortunately, their efforts are not enough to cure them.


A gracious eagle joins the cause and flies high up in the air with a banner for help. The animals gather to see who can help. One by one, they refuse to answer the call. Then a gracious camel steps forward and offers to help. The animals do not believe a camel has what it takes to lead a sleigh.


With the help of Donner and Blitzen, the camel gets harnessed up to the front of the sleigh. Will she succeed in helping to save Christmas for the children? Or will she fail in her attempt to help Santa?


The Christmas Camel is a pure delight! It provides an entertaining Christmas story that makes the reader stop and think, what if the camel wasn't available? The colorful illustrations bring the story to its true light, all perfectly designed to give maximum enjoyment to this book.


Susan Permut, you have captured this reader's heart! This book is exceptional and one that I plan on revisiting during the holidays. It's the perfect addition to any library. 

Children and adults will fall in love with this story and realize even reindeer can get sick!

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