It is Christmas Eve and Nicholas, a young chimney sweep, has one last chimney to clean. Shivering in his ragged coat, he climbs inside the narrow, sooty chimney, working his way to the top. From the roof, he sees the glow of fireplaces in the houses below and inhales the smell of warm mincemeat. "Someday," he thinks, "Christmas Eve will be joyful for me, the way it's meant to be." After the chimney is cleaned, the owner of the house surprises the boy with two presents: a big, warm coat and a glass snow dome. "Thank you for your kindness," says Nicholas. "Pass it on," says the man. When Nicholas grows up, he does precisely that. In this heartwarming book, Linda Oatman High and Kestutis Kasparavicius imagine the childhood of a familiar figure known for giving gifts. It offers a thought to bear in mind at Christmas and throughout the year: kindness received will grow when we pass it onto others.
Linda Oatman High is the author of Barn Savers, illustrated by Ted Lewin, Booklist 1999 Best Picture Book of the Year; Beekeepers, illustrated by Doug Chayka; and The Christmas Star, illustrated by Ronald Himler. She is also the author of the novels Mazie, Hound Heaven, The Summer of the Great Divide, and A Stone's Throw from Paradise. Ms. High lives in Narvon, Pennsylvania.
Kestutis Kasparavicius has illustrated more than thirty books for children, most of which have been published in Europe. In 1993 he was honored as Illustrator of the Year by the Bologna Book Fair, and his illustrations have been selected for the fair's exhibition nine times. He lives in Vilnius, Lithuania.
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