Chris Kringle's Cops

The First Mission

Children - Fantasy/Sci-Fi
198 Pages
Reviewed on 01/29/2016
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Ellwyn Autumn lives in Philadelphia, PA with her family. She has a Master's Degree in Education and taught for 20 years.
She enjoys long walks in the woods, chocolate chip cookies, and a well-written fantasy story.
She decided to start writing when she was seven-years old and has been an aspiring author ever since.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite

It's only two days before Christmas and Patty desperately needs to see Santa Claus at the mall. In fact, she's brought along her resume to apply for a job. Her resume isn't much because Patty's not even twelve yet, but she feels this strong urge to seek employment with Santa Claus. She's brought along her younger brother, Sean, who's not being very cooperative. Both siblings are still struggling from the recent and tragic death of their mother. That's made Sean very rebellious and he no longer believes in Santa Claus. In fact, he tells everyone that Santa Claus doesn't exist. Patty still believes, even though she's sad without her mother. And Patty's birthmark is starting to really bother her. It's growing, moving and very itchy. Her mother was going to explain to her about the birthmark, but she never had the chance. There were many other things that Patty's mother didn't have the opportunity to tell her daughter, like there was a strong connection between the women in Patty's family and the North Pole.

The visit to the mall turns into a disaster. Sean causes all kinds of disruptions and the lineups are impossibly long. The two return home frustrated, Patty with a massive headache that sends her straight to bed. The next morning, she discovers that her brother had stolen some precious letters from Santa Claus's mailbox, letters from hopeful children asking for that special gift. Returning to the mall, Patty thinks that she is just returning the letters to Santa Claus before it's too late. What awaits her is an adventure that she never expected, one that will set the forces of good and evil in a battle to end the power of Santa Claus and his jolly elves. It's the jolly that keeps them going and apparently Patty has a lot of jolly.

Ellwyn Autumn's fantasy novel, Chris Kringle's Cops: The First Mission, is a powerful story full of strong characters and good lessons. This is more than just a story about Santa Claus and the North Pole. It's a story full of compassion, dedication and the importance of being good and, of course, being jolly. This is an outstanding story for young readers. The forces of good against evil and the legend of Santa Claus and the North Pole make for a dynamic mix of fun and adventure.

Jack Magnus

Chris Kringle's Cops: The First Mission is a fantasy for children and preteens written by Ellwyn Autumn. Patty Pringle believes in Santa Claus. She realizes that most sixth graders have long since given up on their belief in him, but she's still adamant about his existence. It was December 23, and she knew she needed to see him. Since her mom died earlier this year, her father never let her or her little brother, Sean, go out unless they were accompanied by their grandfather. Patty found it embarrassing to be treated like a child, and she was thrilled that she had finally convinced her grandfather to let her and Sean walk home from school on their own. The side trip to the mall was pushing their deadline for getting home, but Patty had no other choice. She had her resume in hand, and she was determined to ask Santa for a job.

Ellwyn Autumn's fantasy for children and preteens, Chris Kringle's Cops: The First Mission, is an exciting and fast-paced story about a twelve-year-old girl who is really rather special. The author does an impressive job of conveying the devastation the death of a parent can have on the surviving family members as indeed, Patty's mother, Luce's death, makes celebrating Christmas almost seem a sacrilege. It is only with an intense amount of effort that her father even leaves his room to try to make Christmas happen for his children. I loved the concept of Chris Kringle's Cops and was excited to see the North Pole along with Patty. Melody E. Whitaker's illustrations bring many of the characters to life and are a real treat for readers. I'm looking forward to reading about Patty's future missions with CKC. Chris Kringle's Cops: The First Mission is highly recommended.

Carla Trueheart

Chris Kringle’s Cops: The First Mission by Ellwyn Autumn is a fun, holiday-themed children’s book that should please young readers any time of year. Patty has an inexplicable desire to work for Santa, but when she visits him at the mall, her little brother Sean steals the letters for Santa written by other children. Patty and Sean have just lost their mother, and Sean does not feel that other kids deserve to get what they want this Christmas. When Patty attempts to deliver gifts to those children, she ends up in the North Pole with an agent of the “CKC” and helps him deliver these toys. She also meets some rather sinister girls, Missy and Jade, who threaten her mission and reveal yet another obstacle — a man named Senator Claudius who would like nothing more than to suck all the jolly out of Patty.

There is much action in Chris Kringle’s Cops: The First Mission, from the early scenes with Patty at the mall and at home, to the imaginative flight to the North Pole. Patty is a fun character who has much to learn about herself, and as the book moves on she finds out some interesting secrets about a magic birthmark she’s always had, her connection with Santa and the North Pole, and her mother. The book makes a few leaps from happy moments to sad moments, especially when Patty talks about her mother. The tone is perfect for the holidays in that respect. There is always a sense of this Christmas adventure being bittersweet for Patty. Author Ellwyn Autumn keeps the action moving, and there is always something new going on, which should please young readers and keep them engaged. Overall, I enjoyed the book and recommend it for children. It would make a great Christmas gift!

Paul Johnson

Eleven-year-old Patty Pringle has a secret. You see, she believes in Santa Claus. Patty’s family is going through a hard time after suffering a terrible loss. Thinking it might help, she answers a help-wanted ad to work for Santa. When Patty and her younger brother Sean go to the mall to meet Santa and drop off her resume, Sean steals some of the letters to Santa. Patty learns of the theft and is determined to return the letters to Santa, particularly after learning some long held family secrets. Patty teams up with an elf, Agent 12-25, and travels to the North Pole where they discover it is too late for Santa to deliver the toys to those children. To save Christmas for them, Patty and Agent 12-25 set off to deliver all the toys, but it has to be done by midnight on Christmas Eve. Ultimately, Patty will learn that things are not always what they seem, and not everyone, even at the North Pole, is trustworthy.

Chris Kringle's Cops: The First Mission by Ellwyn Autumn is not your usual child’s Christmas story for sure. The author has created a strong cast of characters - from Patty’s grieving, somewhat dysfunctional family to disgruntled elves and helpers, to a Santa and Mrs Claus completely different from those normally portrayed, as well as one really bad guy. The plot moves along at a rapid pace and the reader will quickly get caught up in the story line. The ending has a little twist that the reader might find slightly abrupt but interesting. If a reader is looking for a strongly written adventure, they can’t go wrong here.

Janelle Fila

Chris Kringle's Cops: The First Mission by Ellwyn Autumn is a cute and humorous children's story about everyone's favorite Christmas icon: Santa Claus. When sixth grader Patty Pringle takes her younger brother Sean to see Santa, she has no idea Sean will steal some of Santa's letters. Patty is devastated. How will Santa know what to bring the children for Christmas? She is determined to right Sean's mistake and save Christmas for the children whose letters were never read by Santa. She teams up with an elf, Agent 12-25, who agrees to take her to the North Pole. Patty thinks she has solved her problem, only to realize it is too late for Santa to deliver the requests from the stolen letters. Now Patty really has to work hard to save Christmas! But with the help of Agent 12-25, she just might be able to make some Christmas miracles come true.

Chris Kringle's Cops: The First Mission is a really cute and clever story that kids are sure to love. I loved the characters in this story and think Ellwyn Autumn did a fantastic job bringing them to life. Patty is spunky and so passionate about her love of all things Christmas and Santa that her enthusiasm is contagious. It jumps off the pages! Sean is ornery and seems to always cause Patty trouble. But she is smart and courageous when it comes to fixing Sean's mistake, which is such a nice trait of an older sister and a great addition to this clever story.