Saturday, September 1, 2012

Review: Twas the Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore


A letter from Santa Claus: In this special twenty-first-century edition, select lines have quietly slipped from the pages. Here at the North Pole, we decided to leave all of that tired old business of smoking well behind us a long time ago. The reindeer also asked that I confirm that I have only ever worn faux fur out of respect for the endangered species that are in need of our protection. This includes my dear friends the arctic polar bears. Publishers note: It was our sincere pleasure to act on Santa’s express wishes. As the direct link between the exposure to the depiction of characters smoking and youth initiation to nicotine has been well established, we were compelled to make these recommended changes. This influential poem has been at the very center of holiday reading for close to two hundred years, and our wish is that it will remain vivid and treasured for many generations to come.
Clement C. Moore (1779–1863) is widely regarded as the very poet of Christmas Eve. Much of the way we have come to celebrate December 24th is based on his portrayal of a jolly Santa, who along with his team of reindeer brings happiness to children and joy to the world. Twas the Night Before Christmas was originally published in the New York Troy Sentinel newspaper in 1823. It has become the most famous poem in the English language. In 2011, various editions of this enchanting poem spent thirty-six weeks on the New York Times best-seller’s list in the children’s category.


I remember reading the original Twas the Night Before Christmas when I was a child and liking the whole idea. For some reason, though, I don't remember any references to smoking. But then again, that was so many years ago already, so I decided to read this edited version.

Twas the Night Before Christmas is a poem about what happens to one house on the night before Christmas. This edited version takes out all of the smoking references.

I am not a fan of smoking so this was a great idea for me. While most smokers I know started because of peer pressure, it never hurts to keep kids away from the thought of starting a bad habit.

Removing some lines doesn't seem to have changed the essence of the poem, so that's great. The poem is a classic so it's important to not alter it too much.

Thanks to NetGalley and Bookmasters for the e-ARC. Publication date of Twas the Night Before Christmas is on September 4, 2012.


  1. The classic is still intact.
  2. It's a beautiful poem.
  3. Children will like the illustrations.


  1. Older readers may prefer a more serious drawing style.


The stockings were hung
by the chimney with care,
in hopes that St. Nicholas
soon would be there.


  1. You like the original poem.
  2. You want to introduce your children to the book.
  3. You are looking for a nice book to read to your kids.




Note: This post contains Amazon and Book Depository affiliate links.

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