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Publication: Durham Herald-Sun
Author: Dawn Baumgartner Vaughan
Date: December 3, 2011
“Eubie, Eubie, Eubie.” So says Santa Claus to his elf that breaks North Pole rules – but all for the good of children at Christmas.
Musician, singer, composer and actor Harry Connick Jr. can add picture book author to his list of talents with the new children’s book “The Happy Elf” (Harper Collins, $17.99).
It’s a fun Christmas story about Eubie’s love for Christmas, so much so that he must find a way for children on the naughty list in Bluesville to move over to the nice list. It turns out unburnable coal looming over the town brings the blues to Bluesville, but Eubie has an idea of how to shine and spruce it up. He used his elf hat to transport himself, which is against North Pole rules, but all in the name of kindness.
It’s a sweet story aimed at children ages 4 to 8, but this reviewer’s 3-year-old loved it, too, every bit of the story as well as the illustrations by Dan Andreasen.
The book is based on Connick’s holiday song “The Happy Elf,” which is included with the book. There’s also the CD, “The Happy Elf” by the Harry Connick Jr. Trio, just released by Marsalis Music. Connick narrates the story for a read-along, plus the trio performs a dozen instrumental selections to ring in the season. The CD would make a great soundtrack to opening Christmas presents, at the dinner table or over dessert and drinks. The CD is part of Marsalis Music’s Connick on Piano collection. Both are great gifts to share with kids and grownups.