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Jingle Bells

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Susan Jeffers, the Caldecott Honor and New York Times bestselling artist of The Nutcracker and The Twelve Days of Christmas, takes readers on an enchanted journey set to lyrics from the beloved holiday song.

Dashing through the snow, in a one-horse open sleigh
O’er the fields we go, laughing all the way…

Ride along with a girl, a boy, their pony, and a mischievous dog as they travel to Grandma’s house. With playful animals in their path, their journey gets a bit sidetracked. But soon enough they arrive at Grandma’s—where an unexpected visitor fills them with holiday cheer!

32 pages, Hardcover

First published January 1, 2017

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About the author

Susan Jeffers

88 books55 followers
There is more than one author with this name.


Graduate of Pratt Institute 1964
Worked in the publishing field for three years
Began freelance career in 1968
Published first children's book in 1970


Caldecott Honor
Golden Apple Biennial Bratislava
The ABBY American Booksellers Best Book award
Society of Illustrators Awards of Merit
Golden Kite Society of Children's Books Author Illustrators

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5 stars
21 (10%)
4 stars
67 (33%)
3 stars
88 (44%)
2 stars
18 (9%)
1 star
4 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 43 reviews
Profile Image for Abigail.
7,088 reviews181 followers
November 29, 2018
Taking the popular Christmas song, Jingle Bells, as a text, author/artist Susan Jeffers creates an engaging holiday adventure in this new picture-book. As a boy and girl set out on a sleigh-ride across the snowy landscape, they and their little white dog experience a variety of adventures, from a sleigh accident to some encounters with the local wildlife. Eventually they make it to their grandmother's house, where they find that Santa has come to call as well...

Although the text of Jingle Bells contains no surprises, the additional story elements that Jeffers creates through her artwork - the upset of the sleigh, in which the boy and girl go flying; the various animals encountered by the little white dog - give it an added sense of adventure, and make the reading and perusing all the more entertaining. The watercolor artwork itself is lovely, ably capturing the beauty of the wintry world through which children and dog travel, while a brief afterword shows all the animals that the little dog encounters. Recommended to Susan Jeffers fans, and to anyone looking for new Christmas picture-books.
Profile Image for Villain E.
2,553 reviews9 followers
December 20, 2018
The text is just the song "Jingle Bells," no additions or embellishments. But my family has a soft spot for Susan Jeffers' art, her West Highland White Terrier in particular. The visual story is a couple of kids getting pulled through the snow on a one-horse open sleigh, and seeing some cute wild animals along the way.
Profile Image for Stephanie.
605 reviews5 followers
December 4, 2021
Impossible to read this book, it must be sung. Fun pictures. But probably not one I would add to my home library.
Profile Image for Bethany.
Author 22 books92 followers
June 12, 2017
Who doesn't love to sing the classic song JINGLE BELLS during Christmas time? Why not morph it into a story with pictures?

The illustrations were beautiful and I loved Susan Jeffer's take on the song JINGLE BELLS. The story follows a girl and a boy who are riding in a one horse open sleigh to Grandma's house. But their mischievous, adventurous dog doesn't stick to the path.

Instead, the dog finds the winter animals to play with, like a fox and a rabbit, whether they want to or not. I loved how in the back of the book, there's a picture of the winter animals to make sure you found them all. It's a look and find within a story which makes it more intriguing.

Final Verdict: This is a story that I would love to give out as a Christmas gift. I loved the pictures and the plot. It applies to both girls and boys and there's even a fun look and find, as if the story wasn't enough. This will be a story we'll be reading for multiple Christmas's to come. I enjoyed sharing it with my daughter and it isn't even Christmas yet.
Profile Image for Christine (Tina).
588 reviews
October 17, 2017
I love Susan Jeffers illustrations - have been a long time fan. An illustrated book based on the poetic lyrics of a beloved Christmas carol is a cool idea, too. However, I was traumatized (as the expressions on the illustrated children's faces were too) with how the fox chases the dog which chases the rabbit down the rabbit hole...I know, I know...circle of life and all that jazz. Geez, though, no one wants to associate Christmas cheer with death of a furry woodland creature! (The rabbit makes it to the hole, by the way. As a bunny pet owner, though, I can only imagine the heart-thudding which was going on once it reached the safety of its warren...yikes!
Profile Image for Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids.
1,952 reviews204 followers
December 16, 2017
A classic Christmas song in format, Jingle Bells will become an instant hit for readers of all ages as they read the lyrics for the song, and enjoy Jeffers illustrations. Bringing the song to life, Jeffers infused some wintery mishaps and fun on the sleigh ride journey through the woods. Kids will enjoy looking for some winter woodland animals featured on each of the pages through out the book. They'll also enjoy the surprise guests at the end of the sleigh ride journey. This is another holiday book we'd recommend picking up this holiday season.

REVIEWED http://mundiekids.blogspot.com/2017/1...
Profile Image for Chelsea.
610 reviews5 followers
December 14, 2018
Look no further! You have found one of the best Jingle Bell books! I enjoy tying books and songs together during story times and this book has allowed me to do exactly that. While singing the traditional Jingle Bells song, I am able to turn the beautifully illustrated pages accordingly, and create an atmosphere that is completely unique. The kiddos, who usually love singing along, become enraptured within the melody and pages of the book. I plan on keeping this book in my holiday story time repertoire for all time to come and would absolutely recommend it to others.

Read during a school visit on December 12th, 2018.
Read during Preschool Play on December 14th, 2018.
Profile Image for Gmr.
1,188 reviews
December 29, 2017
That's pretty much what my holiday this year looked like but having the chance to enjoy works like this one allowed me to take a moment at least to remember the beauty of the season, the simple joy to be found in visiting another, and the many adventures to be found just outside our front door. With beautifully crafted images to bring this classic carol to life (as well as add a few unexpected surprises!), there's fun to be had between these pages for all ages.

**copy received for review
Profile Image for Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*.
6,001 reviews180 followers
December 5, 2017
Jeffers, Susan Jingle Bells. PICTURE BOOK. Harper, 2017. $18.

Jeffers has taken the classic Christmas song and tried to add some fun twists to the story through her illustrations. The new antics along the sleigh ride are amusing, especially with the surprise visitors at the end of the ride. Some children will have fun with this. 978-0062360205

Pre-K, EL (K-3) – OPTIONAL. Cindy, Library Teacher
Profile Image for AMY.
2,380 reviews
December 10, 2018
This book has so many hidden figures, much like an I Spy book. The words to the familiar Christmas carol are sprinkled throughout. A boy and girl are going on a sleigh ride and their dog falls off and runs away. Kids will enjoy looking to see the dog hidden on most of the pages. There are other animals hiding in the wood, too. Put your I Spy skills to work with this holiday offering. Highly recommended for Grades K-2.
Profile Image for Lynn  A. Davidson.
5,810 reviews24 followers
January 24, 2021
Susan Jeffers gorgeously illustrates her interpretation of the song Jingle Bells. Beautiful winter scenes and frivolity.
It appears to me that she misunderstood the meaning of "bells on bob-tail ring" as she depicted the horse's tail long and flowing. Bob-tail is a short horse's tail - either trimmed or tied up so it does not get tangled in the reins. Other than that point, the illustrations are fabulous.
Profile Image for carrietracy.
1,338 reviews19 followers
December 31, 2021
Susan Jeffers' illustrations are absolutely lovely and my kids love looking for the animals in the snow. This book features some children who go to visit their grandparents who look suspiciously like Santa and Mrs. Claus. Also great in that the familiar text - lyrics to jingle bells - make it easier for littles to read along.
Profile Image for Vicki.
4,510 reviews16 followers
October 18, 2017
Susan Jeffers' books are a joy to look at (awesome illustrations). I was thinking the pictures reminded me of "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" and when I checked, she is the illustrator of that picture book.

Comforting and well done.
Profile Image for MaryLibrarianOH.
1,965 reviews21 followers
October 21, 2017
The song Jingle Bells in picture book format. The illustrations beautiful. Love the search and find aspect with the winter animals. Great surprise at the end when you see who the kids are going to visit. New Christmas classic in the making.
Profile Image for Craig.
72 reviews1 follower
December 18, 2017
If your toddler sings Jingle Bells a lot (like mine), then I'd recommend this book. Finding the animals is a fun part and my daughter gets into it. If your kid doesn't like Jingle Bells, it may be a pass.
Profile Image for Britt, Book Habitue.
1,273 reviews16 followers
December 21, 2017
The simple text (just the words to the song) is nothing amazing, but the illustrations (which are GORGEOUS) tell a whole other story.... which I find hilarious.
Maybe not a great read-a-loud, but lots of fun.
Profile Image for Sarah Brooks.
442 reviews1 follower
December 3, 2021
The pictures really didn't seem to fit with the lyrics and for some reason they have a seek and find at the end with the pictures and seeing if you can spot random animals not found in the lyrics either.
Profile Image for Lisa D.
3,001 reviews22 followers
October 24, 2017
The song jingle bells with beautiful illustrations! A holiday classic!
637 reviews
January 4, 2018
Susan Jeffers's illustrations are stunning as always! Love the glitter on the cover.
254 reviews1 follower
April 10, 2018
love the illustrations, but difficult to follow the song if you want to sing it.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 43 reviews

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