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The Christmas Tale of Peter Rabbit by Emma Thompson Book Review

The Christmas Tale of Peter Rabbit by Emma Thompson is a hardcover children’s picture book inspired by the tales written and illustrated by Beatrix Potter. With beautiful illustrations by Eleanor Taylor, the story follows familiar characters in a Christmastime adventure.

A book, The Christmas Tale of Peter Rabbit, on a cabled blanket.

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The Christmas Tale of Peter Rabbit | Book Review

I recently stumbled upon this sweet hardcover picture book: The Christmas Tale of Peter Rabbit by Emma Thompson while shopping at (my favorite) HomeGoods. The book is inspired by the original tales of Beatrix Potter and includes a CD recording read by the author. A children’s book read by Emma Thompson?! Yes please.

The interior pages of a Peter Rabbit book by Emma Thompson.

The beautiful illustrations by Eleanor Taylor are excellent as well. She does a great job capturing the original characters created by Beatrix Potter. In this story, Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny meet a proud turkey named William, just prior to Christmas. As they converse, they are appalled to realize they will have to break the news to William that a dinner invitation from Mr. and Mrs. McGregor doesn’t mean quite what he imagines. An amusing race then ensues to hide William from the McGregors and their dreadful plot.

The interior pages of a Peter Rabbit story book by Emma Thompson.

The theme of Christmas is in the background of the tale of course, but otherwise it’s mostly focused on the rescue of William. This one captivated me with the illustrations and the appeal of an Emma Thompson recording. Additionally, I appreciate the modest amount of text (and large font size) on each page. Great for keeping the attention spans of youngsters, or for young readers following along. This is a fun book to add to a read-aloud collection…or maybe to add when you DON’T want to read aloud, since you can pop in the CD and kiddos can listen and page through the book themselves.

A book review image of the cover of The Christmas Tale of Peter Rabbit, a book by Emma Thompson.

What I Love about The Christmas Tale of Peter Rabbit by Emma Thompson

  • It comes in several formats: Hardcoverpaperback, and board. Note: I bought the hardcover with CD locally at my HomeGoods store. I haven’t had a chance to look at the other editions (and it’s worth noting the Amazon hardcover doesn’t say outright that it comes with a CD, though the cover photo shows it).
  • Great story line. Sometimes the characters in the original Beatrix Potter stories are extremely poorly-behaved…which wouldn’t be such a problem, except for giving the tiny readers of the stories all kind of ideas! I felt like this book was more playful. Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny forget to accomplish tasks their mothers assigned them and create a bit of a ruckus hiding William from his fate, but nothing too crazy!
  • An Emma Thompson CD recording. I’m here for it.
  • The gorgeous illustrations.
  • Formatting. As I mentioned, the moderate amount of text per page keeps the story moving and makes this an easy story to share with a variety of ages and patience levels.

Notes & Details

From the Amazon listing:

  • Age Range: 3 – 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool – 2
  • Hardcover: 72 pages
  • ISBN-10: 0723276943

Other notes:

  • Does it rhyme? No.
  • Does it feature repetition in the text? No.
  • Other notes: Dialogue is italicized. The text itself includes helpful markers on how to read it aloud, like CAPS, italics, or different typesetting. The story only mentions Christmas.

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