James Mayhew - Katie's London Christmas - Story Snug

Katie’s London Christmas by James Mayhew

James Mayhew has combined the magic of a snowy Christmas Eve with many London sights including Trafalgar Square, Regent Street, Covent Garden, Big Ben and 10 Downing Street.

The Story: It’s Christmas Eve and Katie and her brother Jack are sleeping at Grandma’s house when they are woken by a loud sneeze. They find Father Christmas downstairs and offer to help him deliver presents. During their sleigh ride over snowy London they see many famous sights before sliding down chimneys and delivering gifts. The last house on their list is Buckingham Palace and when Father Christmas’ sneeze wakes the corgis they are almost disturbed by a member of the Royal Family. Katie and Jack fly home with Father Christmas and next morning they find that he has left them a special present under their Christmas tree.

Father Christmas is large with little round glasses and rosy red cheeks and he completes his traditional red outfit with a very snazzy pair of striped trousers! His six reindeer wear matching red collars and the pages and spreads where the sleigh swoops and flies are awesome, we particularly like the picture of the sleigh flying around Big Ben. The double spread where the sleigh flies through a starry sky and over St. Paul’s Cathedral is my favourite, it also prompted my daughter to ask why nobody was wearing a seatbelt!

The text is easy to read and words like swooped, dashed and whizzing portray the speed of their flight and the urgency of the task in hand. Those of you who are familiar with London will spot many old and new landmarks and several pages give you a great bird’s eye view of the city. The beautiful illustrations are very festive. My daughter is fascinated by Father Christmas’ magic which is shown as sparkling coloured dots but her favourite picture shows Katie, Jack and Father Christmas carrying precarious piles of brightly coloured presents through the dark (she likes to try and guess what could be in them!).

Katie’s London Christmas has a beautiful, glittery hardback cover and would make a lovely Christmas present. The story would make a lovely festive addition to a Christmas Eve bedtime routine.

Age Range: 4 to 8

Author / Illustrator: James Mayhew

We also enjoy reading Katie in London in which one of the Trafalgar Square lions shows Katie the sights of London. My daughter was so excited when we visited Trafalgar Square and saw Katie’s lion!

James Mayhew will be at The National Gallery’s Katie Day on November 29th. Join him for a free day of art, stories and fun. He will also be signing books, a signed copy of Katie’s London Christmas would make a lovely Christmas present.

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14 responses to “Katie’s London Christmas by James Mayhew”

  1. sounie avatar

    Thank you for your help. Is it The Shard that we can see on the page “and they dashed from street to street, from roof to roof …” and the Tower of London and 10 Downing Street?

  2. sounie avatar

    Thank you for this book review. I am not familiar with London (I am french). Could you tell me all the landmarks we can see in this book ? (I already know that we can see Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, St Paul’s cathedral, Covent Garden, Trafalgar Square). Thank you for your help.

    1. Catherine avatar

      As well as the landmarks that you mention Katie, Jack and Father Christmas fly over Regent Street, The Houses of Parliament, St James’s Park and The Mall. There’s also a picture of The London Eye.

  3. Renee @ MDBR avatar

    Aw… sounds like a very sweet Christmas tale. Thanks for sharing it in the Kid Lit Blog Hop!

    1. Catherine avatar

      It’s a real fleeced, festive story 🙂

  4. Cheryl Carpinello avatar

    I’m going to have to look at Katie’s travel again since visiting London and the UK this fall. Thanks for sharing on the Kid Lit Blog Hop!

    1. Catherine avatar

      I can’t decide which of the two Katie London books I like best, they’re both lovely 🙂

  5. Hannah avatar

    Wow, another fabulous choice of books. My son is 14 months old so he is a bit young for this, but this would make a great book for the Christmas eve kits for older children. Thanks again for taking part in #festivefriday it’s always a pleasure to read your blog 🙂

    1. Catherine avatar

      It’s on my list of Christmas Eve reads. Thank you for the compliment 🙂

  6. Tiffiny avatar

    This looks like a delightful book. It’s a little old for my daughter, but It makes me want to get it for her anyway just to remind her of the London sights we visited when we were there this summer.

  7. Steph @MisplacedBrit avatar

    Great intro to the book , I’d never heard of it!

  8. Laura Thomas avatar

    Stopping by from Kid Lit Blog Hop… this sounds like a lovely story! I’m from England originally, and there’s nothing quite like Christmas in the city of London. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    1. Catherine avatar

      I’ve celebrated lots of English Christmases but not a London one (yet!).