Santa Claus vs the Easter Bunny by Fred Blunt
Ill. by David Cornish. Allen and Unwin, 2018. ISBN 9781760634698
(Age: 5-10) Humorous Stories. 'Santa Claus and Easter Bunny live next door to each other. Santa was a jolly fellow. Bunny was not.' Bunny's bad attitude to life is because he has to make the chocolate, turn it into eggs, wrap the eggs and deliver the eggs ON FOOT. Santa on the other hand, has a workforce of elves, a herd of magic flying reindeer and gets tasty treats at every stop. 'EVEN THE DUMB REINDEER GET A CARROT! I'D SETTLE FOR A CARROT. I LIKE CARROTS. IS IT TOO MUCH TO ASK FOR A CARROT' says Bunny on his rant. He wants to get even with Santa and the ungrateful children of the world so he pumps Santa's toy making machines full of chocolate. The plan backfires. The children are ecstatic! Toys made out of chocolate! Santa has made Christmas even better, they say. Bunny is distraught. He packs up his workshop and has decided to leave for good when Santa knocks on his door . . . but instead of being angry Santa offers him a partnership and thanks him with a bag full of carrots. 'Bunny was a happy bunny indeed, and as for Santa, Well, he was always happy'. The cartoony illustrations are busy, vibrant and humorous. They perfectly match with the style and tone of the story. Santa is this massive, ever-smiling, slightly daft looking man and Bunny is a scrawny, snivelling mess. This is a completely crazy story but is well written and full of flair. Older children will love its crude humour and will probably be asking for chocolate toys for Christmas this year. It isn't a book to share with younger children though, whose pure understandings of Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny as altruistic and kind will be irrevocably challenged.