Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float

Children - Picture Book
34 Pages
Reviewed on 10/01/2017
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Award-winning children’s author, Cindy L. Shirley grew up in a small town in Cherokee County Georgia. She is a wife, mother of two, and grandmother of one amazing granddaughter. She loves working with children and has tons of hilarious stories to share. Cindy says, “So many heartfelt conversations, and silly experiences took place during my time working as an Cobb County elementary school ASP teacher. Kids just want to feel acknowledged and share their day with someone.” It was during this time that she decided to pursue a business in entertaining children. Mrs. Shirley founded Let’s Pretend Parties in 2006 and Let’s Pretend Publishing in 2017. She continues to work with children of all ages as a party planner and hostess. Ms. Shirley is also involved with annual community and family events throughout Cobb and Cherokee Counties. This adventure, along with personal experiences, would be the basis for her heartwarming children's books: "Diesel the Body Guard; No Bullies Allowed! Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float, and her new series, The Fabulous life of Minnie the Sassy Chick." These stories are based on real characters from her family, as well as her childhood experiences. Her creative and fun filled story lines were written to bring a smile to children’s faces. She says, “I will consider this new adventure as an author to be a huge success if I can make children laugh.”

    Book Review

Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite

Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float is a holiday-themed children’s picture book written by Cindy L. Shirley and illustrated by Cleoward Sy. Doodle was a little girl who lived with her grandparents, Mimi and Paw-Paw, on their farm in the town of Tinsel. There were lots of fun things for Doodle and her friends to do on the farm, and they spent many happy afternoons after school playing there. One afternoon, they went exploring in the woods nearby and found an abandoned trailer. Its paint was faded, and several of its tires were flat, but Doodle’s imagination was captured by the sign still attached to it that indicated that the trailer had a name, and it was “Magic.” The excited children ran back to the farm and asked Paw-Paw if he could help fix that little trailer, and he jumped right on his trusty tractor and drove over to see it. Paw-Paw’s an inventive sort, so he was able to quickly hook it up to the tractor and bring it home, and between him and Doodle, they figured out a perfect plan for Magic, the trailer.

Cindy Shirley’s holiday-themed children’s picture book, Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float, is a charming and beautifully illustrated book that pays tribute to the imagination and ingenuity that is present in every little boy and girl -- as well as some very fortunate adults, like Paw-Paw. I Ioved following as he and his granddaughter see the possibilities hidden in that old, broken-down trailer and transform it into something special and, yes, magical. And throughout the story, that theme of recycle and reuse appears in a number of clever and fun ways. Cleoward Sy’s illustrations are marvelous! The predominant reds, whites and greens he uses in each panel enhance the Christmassy feel of the tale, and the facial expressions of the characters work very well indeed. This is a grand selection for story time that is guaranteed to get children even more into the Christmas spirit than they may already be. It’s also a challenging and worthwhile option for more experienced young readers to try on their own. Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float is most highly recommended.

Barbara Fanson

Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float is a beautiful story of teamwork, determination, and a happy ending. The characters in this children’s picture book were determined to fix up an old trailer they found in the woods and decorate it for the upcoming Christmas parade. Their enthusiasm was contagious and everyone got involved: Doodle’s grandparents, her teacher, and all her friends. Author Cindy Shirley has written a heartwarming family story about a small town’s annual tradition—the Christmas parade. Accompanied by beautiful, realistic illustrations by Cleoward Sy, children will enjoy both the story and the pictures. The children demonstrate how teamwork and motivation are key ingredients to completing a project and winning the best float trophy. The children set a goal to repair the old trailer, but it becomes more than just a decorated trailer—it’s Magic!

Author Cindy Shirley has created a lovely story that parents will enjoy reading together with their children, or that children can read on their own. Even teachers will want to share this story of cooperation with their students. Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float is an inspiring story of children and adults working together to bring an old trailer back to life and to share their creativity with the townspeople. The full colour pages have bold, bright hues to realistically illustrate a lovely story. Illustrator Cleoward Sy has created simple but realistic images to adorn each page. I think this story will become an annual tradition in households—not just at Christmas, but all year round.

Sarah Stuart

Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float is a children’s picture book beautifully illustrated by Cleoward Sy. Author Cindy Shirley has captured the essence of Christmas so well that you can almost hear roasting chestnuts popping. Doodle is a little girl who lives with her grandparents, Mimi and Paw-Paw, in the small town of Tinsel. Paw-Paw is great fun; he recycles rubbish he finds around the farm to make toys, like a ride-on train, for Doodle and her many friends. Out in search of a fir tree perfect for Christmas, the friends find a rusty old trailer with the word “Magic” painted on it. Wouldn’t this be an ideal candidate for Paw-Paw’s own special brand of do-it-yourself magical new toys? Can Paw-Paw help “Magic” look good again in time for Tinsel’s Christmas parade?

Cindy Shirley has written a story guaranteed to entertain pre-kindergarten children in Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float. Even better for parents looking for gifts, this book works on sound principles like not going too far from home, children asking permission to stay at Doodle’s home late, and their school teacher applauding their teamwork. Paw-Paw does the difficult work of returning the trailer to its former glory, but Doodle and her friends are involved in making the decorations and Mimi helps with sewing. When the great day comes, it turns out there is a prize for the best float. Guess which one wins? Doodle and the Magic Christmas Float is a book that will become a favourite. “Magic” is more aptly named than Doodle guessed!