The Carpenter's Gift: A Christmas Tale about the Rockefeller Center Tree

The Carpenter's Gift: A Christmas Tale about the Rockefeller Center Tree


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This modern classic Christmas story teaches children the spirit of the season by bringing together two great New York City traditions: the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree and the neighbor-helping-neighbor program of Habitat for Humanity.
Opening in Depression-era New York City, The Carpenter's Gift tells the story of eight-year-old Henry and his father selling Christmas trees. They give a Christmas tree to construction workers building Rockefeller Center and celebrate together. Through the kindness of the construction workers and neighbors, Henry gets his wish for a nice, warm home to replace his family's drafty shack. He plants a pinecone from that first Rockefeller Center Tree. As an old man, Henry repays the gift by donating the enormous tree that has grown from that pinecone to become a Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. After bringing joy to thousands as the Rockefeller Center tree, its wood will be used to build a home for another family in need.

Written by children's nonfiction author David Rubel in collaboration with Habitat for Humanity. Gorgeous illustrations crafted by Jim LaMarche.

"Rubel's story of compassion hits all the right holiday notes; LaMarche's lush, warm illustrations of glowing Christmas trees and smiling, caring characters drive home the central message of charity." --The Horn Book

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780375869228
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Publication date: 09/27/2011
Pages: 48
Sales rank: 53,598
Product dimensions: 8.70(w) x 11.60(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile: AD740L (what's this?)
Age Range: 5 - 8 Years

About the Author

DAVID RUBEL is a nationally recognized author and speaker whose work focuses on making American history accessible to a broad audience. His most recent book, If I Had a Hammer, includes a foreward by former president Jimmy Carter. David's children's books, The Scholastic Encyclopedia of the Presidents and Their Times and The Scholastic Atlas of the United States have both become grade-school standards, selling more than half a million copies each in multiple editions.

JIM LAMARCHE has illustrated over 20 children's books, some of which he has also written. His lushly rendered illustrations appear in our recent release, The Day Tiger Rose Said Goodbye, by Jane Yolen. His work has been awarded the Parents magazine Best Book of the Year; the Irma S. and James H. Black Award for Excellence in Picture Books; and the American Bookseller Association Pick-of-the-List. He lives in central California with his wife and children.

Customer Reviews

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The Carpenter's Gift 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
314jan More than 1 year ago
I purchased two copies of this book for each of my grandsons, ages 2 and 4. The story is simple and easy to follow for the 2 year old, yet filled with meaning that our 4 year old (and older children) can understand. The text on each page is not lengthy; small children will not lose interest. Additionally, the story holds the interest of older children as well. The illustrations are beautiful and lend extra spark to the story. This is a lovely book, historically based, and the story is directly linked to the book's afterword regarding the work of Habitat for Humanity. I hearly recommend this book to parents, grandparents, godparents, and teachers!
lydsken More than 1 year ago
Great story. I read this book to my students and we learned about the history of the tree. We researched all the heights of the past trees that were used. we discussed Habitat for Humanity as well. there are so many facts surrounding the whole process of the tree each year- such as how many lights are used, how they transport the tree, set up the tree, and even how they put the star on the top. The students love learning about all the fun facts. Great story to read to all ages.
nHoines More than 1 year ago
We are growing our collection of Christmas books and this quickly became one of my favorites this year. A great book for the whole family!
bsa-4p More than 1 year ago
As an artist the trailer sold me first. I was also familiar with the lighting of the Rockefeller Center tree at Christmas. After my book arrived I found incredible art work and a heart-warming, honest story that I couldn't wait to read to my grandchildren, 2 boys and one girl (8-11 years). I saw an opportunity to teach them about giving, in current times and always, because of the link to Habitat for Humanity. They loved it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wonderful book. The story is heartwarming and the illustrations are beautiful. I have sent it to my grandchildren in Atlanta so that they to can share in the story of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree.
hudsonJL More than 1 year ago
My children love this story and especially how it relates to the actually Christmas Tree in Rockefeller Center and Jim LaMarche (the illustrator) is one of our favorites - the pictures are breathtaking! Great book for anyone for the holidays.
12flyers More than 1 year ago
It's a children's book and I'm a senior citizen, but I'd seen an except of this book along with a story on the illustrator in Habitat for Humanity's magazine and I knew I wanted to read the story and see each illustration. Instead of getting a printed copy I got it as an eBook for my color NOOK. I was not disappointed. It's a wonderful story and the illustrations are just gorgeous.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love the message of this story. A good book to help today's children connect with a modern day symbol of Christmas spirit.