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Download 'Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving eBook

by Dav Pilkey

Download 'Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving eBook
Dav Pilkey
Scholastic; 1st edition (1990)
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  • Musical Aura Island
This book is not vegan propaganda. The author was not vegan or vegetarian at the time that he wrote this. He set out to write a fun, Thanksgiving-themed children's book set to the tone of 'Twas the Night Before Christmas, and he accomplished that. The kids are dreaming of drumsticks during the bus ride, but save the turkeys in the end. That isn't a bad thing and I don't get the complaint that some people seem to have with that.

This is a fun book that really shows the sweetness and sensitivity of children. We have rescued chickens and while kids sometimes meet them with a little reservation at first, once they realize that the chickens are friendly, they are eager to feed and spend time with them. For a lot of kids, meeting new animals is a magical experience. A couple of days ago, a little girl was over and my daughter introduced her to our adopted potbelly pig. Her eyes lit up and she was so excited to get to feed her carrots and have her roll for belly rubs. The girl's dad thought we planned to butcher the pig and his daughter's eyes grew wide in horror and then softened when we said that Elsa is never going to be eaten. Her dad seemed disappointed that he couldn't get in on the meat. In that way, he reminded me of Farmer Mack Nugget in this book. A nice enough guy, likes kids, but has no trouble with killing an animal he knows and eating the result. Most kids aren't like that. They want to help animals and be their friends. Kids can come up with pretty hilarious ways of trying to solve such problems. That is what happens here. As soon as the kids have a chance to save the turkeys, they do! It would never work in real life, but is fun to see on paper and little kids love looking at the feathers and feet sticking out from under coats and giggling. There is only one briefly scary part (when Farmer Nugget says what the ax is for. Who leaves things like that lying around for kids to pick up anyway?), but it quickly passes and everything else is very light-hearted.

Although I purchased this book for Thanksgiving, my 3-year-old enjoys it randomly regardless of the season. Yes, we are a vegan family, and I would recommend it to other vegan families, but I really think it is a book that most little kids can enjoy. The book ends with a very positive message of what to be thankful for and it is a message that all of us can use.

As a side note, what's the deal with offering water when someone is upset? Here, the farmer and teacher rush to the well to bring back water to calm the children, but it's in soap operas too. "Yeah, so I hate to break it to you, but the love of your life was in a boat that explodd and we can't find his body, but surely he is dead. Want some water?". I have always wondered about that.
  • CrazyDemon
This book was recommended by a fellow vegan. I bought it fot my grandkids....the vegan ones. For them, it is perfect! Now, thing is, I have non-vegan grandkids, too. They don't eat turkey yet. One is 2 months old and the other seems to be a natural vegetarian. Their parents eat meat, however, and I wouldn't want them thinking their parents are awful for eating an animal. Their decisions in the future should come naturally.
I agree this is not a book you buy and immediately read to your children. I loved it and for my vegan grandkids it is fine. They are already aware that turkeys die to feed people on Thanksgiving. But I recommend that an adult should read this book first.
  • Gaudiker
Cute book, easy for kids to follow. The rhyming was well thought out and catchy, I enjoyed reading it to the kids. I did not give it 5 stars because we made the mistake of reading this before Thanksgiving Dinner. One of the kids did not want to eat turkey after reading and we had to make her a pizza. So cute story, enjoyed reading it, my suggestion is to read it after dinner not before.
  • Burking
Not part of the "Night Before _____" series that seems to cover every holiday and life event (though there is a "Night Before Thanksgiving" from that publisher that is also quite charming), this is the story of a pre-Thanksgiving field trip in the style of Clement Moore's "Twas the Night Before Christmas."

This adorable tale definitely has a vegetarian agenda, but I certainly didn't think it was pushy about it and, heck, we read it every year while roasting turkey, though I see how this might cause some kids distress. (Like the kids in the story, actually.)

Our paperback copy was so worn, I was thrilled to find this hardcover version on Amazon. I think it deserves to be a children's classic and the art, and story, are both top notch and still laugh-out-loud amusing for my four-year-old, who has been reading this story for the past several years. (Only get it out at Thanksgiving time.)
  • Umdwyn
Wow, what a refreshing take on a traditional holiday tale! We are a vegetarian household and my 2 sons (ages 7 & 5) LOVED this book. They could really relate to the thoughtful behavior displayed by the children in this book as they are especially sensitive to (and confused by) the fact that otherwise beloved animals show up as main dishes on the holiday table. Our Thanksgiving household tradition therefore involves sponsoring a rescued turkey through Farm Sanctuary. Kudos to Dav Pilkey & Scholastic for taking on a non-traditional topic and supporting a cruelty-free Thanksgiving!:-).
  • Gavirgas
As a mother of 2 with a fully vegetarian family it can be quite a task to find children's books that fall in line as being appropriate given our views/beliefs. This book was a little Thanksgiving godsend! It manages to convey a great message of compassion and strength from the children in it who upon hearing of the turkeys fates panic and eventually sneak the turkeys out of the farm and take them home as guests for vegetarian Thanksgiving dinners. The illustrations are cute and the text is fun, funny and has a good rhyme scheme. It doesn't manage to fully hold my two year old's attention (though little does anyway) but he'll enjoy it later and my seven month old likes looking at the pictures and trying to eat the pages.
  • Still In Mind
A true holiday classic for the sillies among us. With awesome illustrations
I am an elementary & middle school Special Education Teacher. This book is so well done, has gorgeous art (references & uses Van Gogh art style) and a sweet, caring message. Gets kids thinking about their food - without being judgmental! Simply aimed at having the kids on the field trip having BIG HEARTS & making room for turkeys to LIVE in their home - celebrating life, love & ultimately, compassion!