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The Wild Christmas Reindeer
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The Wild Christmas Reindeer

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  5,908 ratings  ·  158 reviews
Little Teeka thought she had to be firm with the reindeer to get them ready for Santa's important flight, but when her bossy yelling only got their antlerstangled up, she knew she had to try something different."Beautifully conceived and finely wrought." -- Booklist (starred review)"Brett's precise, glowing illustrations, drawing on Swedish folk art, make this a beguiling Advent c ...more
Paperback, 32 pages
Published October 5th 1998 by Puffin Books (first published 1990)
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Average rating 4.11  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,908 ratings  ·  158 reviews

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Teeka lives at the North Pole with Santa and she is in charge of readying the Reindeer this season. She tries to be bossy and the Reindeer are unsettled and nothing is working. It's not until she lightens up that the team starts to work together. Attitude matters, especially when dealing with animals.

This has the famous Jan Brett panels on the sides. Each page shows a different day of the month leading to Christmas and the toys they are making for the season. There is a lot over ther
Mariah Roze
Dec 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book had amazing illustrations! At time the book got confusing on who was who, but the illustrations and the storyline made up for it. My students really enjoyed this book :)
To check out all my reviews:

True Rating: 4.5 Stars

The illustrations in the book is marvelous and it looks like it could have been paintings because the effort they put into the details and marking off the days till Christmas on the sides is absolutely brilliant and spectacular all around. If I had to write a review for this book solely on the illustrations it would automatically be 5 Stars material but unfortunately the story tells a complete different story.

The main c/>
Dec 16, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ho-ho-ho, kidstuff
Young Teeka learns that when tending Santa's rambunctious reindeer, a gentle touch works much better than a stern approach.


The story is, of course, secondary to Brett's flawless artwork. I like how the side panels countdown (or up) the days to the night before Christmas.

Dec 10, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: children and parents who need to speak more gently and kindly
Shelves: children, fairy-tales
Jan Brett is one of those children's book illustrators whose work is instantly recognizable. I can't think of any artist I've seen attempt to imitate his (her?) uniquely Scandinavian style. He/She uses dark outlines to set off the major figures and objects, but then uses finely brushed detail in blossoming colors to draw the viewer into the paintings. The margins and borders are always richly ornamented, and often contain tidbits and scenes that amount to a mini story in themselves. In this Chri ...more
Dec 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My Christmas book for the day. Be sure to look closely at all of the pictures. A lovely story on kindness
Nov 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Readers Looking for Children's Stories About Santa's House / Jan Brett Fans
When Teeka is given the task of preparing the reindeer for Santa's sleigh, the little elf takes her task seriously, convinced that she must be firm with her fleet-hoofed charges. But her bossy ways, and ignorance of how the herd is organized - she doesn't realize that Tundra is the leader, and should be paired with Twilight, for instance - leads to quite a tangle. It takes a quiet voice and gentleness to tame these wild Christmas reindeer...

Originally published in 1990, and then reis
If you (or your child) is very attached to the reindeer names of Dasher, Dancer, etc., etc., this one may be a little jarring, but I really loved it. The reindeer names in this story -- Bramble, Heather, Windswept, Lichen, Snowball, Crag, Twilight, and Tundra -- seem extremely fitting to me, regardless of the fact that they are not the ones I am used to. Teeka getting frustrated as she tries to wrangle those wild reindeer was a little too reminiscent of me trying to wrangle me toddler at times a ...more
Oct 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Being nice always gets you further in life.
Nov 27, 2014 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 25, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Wild Christmas Reindeer is a picturebook written for Primary readers.

The book tells the story of a young child chosen by Santa to round up the reindeer needed to help fly his sleigh Christmas Eve. The reindeer have been running wild since the previous Christmas which makes for a difficult time getting them to behave.

The Wild Christmas Reindeer is not a traditional Christmas book. While the setting is the North Pole and there are reindeer to pull Santa's sleigh, there is no refer
Dec 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I've heard a lot of thoughts on this book, and a lot of mixed opinions. Personally, I love this book. It's been a favorite for years. We'll bring it out and read it every year without a doubt!

I've seen a lot of people try and describe the meaning of this book. Many people seem to think that it's about how to treat animals, but I think they're missing the point. Teeka is so determined that she's going to show Santa how wonderful she is at bringing the reindeer in that she just tries t
Linda Lipko
Jan 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
Brecht is one of my favorite illustrators. Her clear, crisp, lovely images are incredibly rendered.

Teeka needs to get the wild reindeer in shape and ready for Santa's sleigh. When she calls them back from the wild, she has a difficult time making them behave. Shouting, and yelling only causes the deer to rebel, storm and lock their horns.

When she discovers a softer tone is appreciated by the reindeer, she is able to brush and carroul them in place.
Dec 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am so glad I found this book in time for Christmas Eve! I remember loving this story as a child, but haven't read it in a good two decades. The story is lovely, short and sweet, but the real magic is in the glorious illustrations. The amount of detail and artistic flair is enough to make you want to reread the story every year, finding something you didn't notice before.
Santa has asked Teeka to prepare the wild reindeer for their Christmas Eve flight. Teeka cajoles and shouts and uses a firm hand to try to train the reindeer. It isn't working and it seems they will never be ready for Christmas Eve. When their antlers all get twisted together, Teeka realizes that maybe being gentler will work better.

Typical gorgeous illustrations from Jan Brett!
Nov 30, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who loves Christmas!
Shelves: comfort-books
As Christmas draws closer, I remember this well loved (and much read) book from my teenaged daughter's childhood.

Lovely, beautiful illustrations and a charming story. I would recommend this for any parent of a 3-10 year old (and maybe older!) for family Christmas reading. My well-worn copy will be coming out of storage very soon!
Laura (Book Scrounger)
This book was chosen for Day 11 of my "25 Days of Christmas Books" blog series:
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Teeka must get these wild reindeer ready to pull the sleigh, but screaming at them is not working. Best part: Beautiful pictures, learning how to teach. Ages 5-10.
Dec 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kidlit, holidays
We like that each page shows a different date in December and something else the elves are working on at Santa’s Winterfarm.
Jan 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
The illustrations are absolutely delightful.
Dec 19, 2018 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of my all time favorite Christmas stories, I thoroughly enjoyed sharing it with Judah and Ella. Honestly, the illustrations make the story and it has sparked some good conversation about how other places in the world celebrate Christmas.
Molly Cluff (Library!)
Nov 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: christmas
The illustrations cannot be beat. So much detail and Jan Brett flair. I did kind of chafe with the ending, where the female elf is described as "bossy" and has to learn to be more gentle. Girls are called out for being "bossy" way more than boys, where it's just seen as exerting and practicing leadership skills.
Megan DeHart
Sep 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: holiday
A yuletide story about working together. At first the deer and their handler dont get along, and as such, are not able to work together to pull Santa's sleigh and fly. But, after apologizing and agreeing to not be so bossy the group is able to pull it together and Christmas is saved. The illustrations are very eye catching, and in the edges of the page the days until Christmas eve are counted down with a small background story of the elves preparing everything in the workshop. Children may ask w ...more
Dec 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids-christmas
This author's books are consistently beautiful. The artwork is detailed, and every page has unique and interesting borders and letters. The setting seems to be like northern Europe.
This story is about a little elf girl who is given the responsibility of training the reindeer to prepare for Christmas.
Unlike most children's books, this really seems to encourage the virtue of responsibility. The man character also learns to lead in a benevolent way, not letting the stress of Christmas preparation
Dec 18, 2013 rated it it was ok
I always love Jan Brett's illustrations, but never a huge fan of her stories. This one is okay. I like the moral of being kind, but didn't really see how there was yelling and didn't really get the reindeer names or how they could be trained to fly a sleigh in 3 or 4 days. Overly critical adult review I guess, but I also don't think my children will be wanting to read it again and again. I'll be leaving this one on the library shelves next year.
Feb 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pbf-holiday
Teeka is tasked with getting the reindeer ready to fly Santa's sleigh, but she is so impatient and gruff with them, that they do not cooperate. Finally she has to learn to be gentle and caring to get them to cooperate. The main illustrations are surrounded by borders and the sidebars show the elves getting toys and candies ready for distribution. The story is set in the arctic, and the illustrations have a Scandinavian look to them, with appropriate shaggy reindeer.
Jo Oehrlein
Jan 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
The power of a soft voice instead of yelling and bossing.

If you're wedded to Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, etc., then this is the wrong book for you as there are 8 new reindeer names, plus Teeka an elf who gets them ready for Santa and Christmas Eve.

Love the detailed illustrations, especially the countdown to Christmas (day by day, shown by calendar pages) in the side bars.
Dec 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love Jan Brett books for the beautifully detailed illustrations as much as the story. My son loved checking out what the elves were working on each day in the sidebars as it counted down to Christmas. The story is nice, too, about a young girl trying to get the wild reindeer trained to pull Santa's sleigh.
Kenson and kirra
Nov 30, 2017 rated it liked it
this book was nice. i liked how the reindeer and teeka used cooperation to learn and fly the sleigh. i would have liked it better if the reindeer were named the traditional names of dasher, prancer, and vixion. it was still a good story.
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With over thirty three million books in print, Jan Brett is one of the nation's foremost author illustrators of children's books. Jan lives in a seacoast town in Massachusetts, close to where she grew up. During the summer her family moves to a home in the Berkshire Hills of Massachusetts.
As a child, Jan Brett decided to be an illustrator and spent many hours reading and drawing. She says, "I remember