The Twelve Days of Christmas – Laurel Long

laurel long twelve days of christmas cover

Christmas books in June?  Am I crazy?  Yes, Probably! But I am so excited about the deal I got that I just have to share with all of you.  Last Christmas I wanted to buy a copy of Laurel Long’s Twelve days of Christmas, but couldn’t find a used copy for a good price, and with all of the other presents I was buying, I just couldn’t justify getting myself a this book.  Well, the random thought occurred to me that I should check out Abe’s books for a copy of it now, since the inventory would be up and demand low.  Guys, I scored! It’s literally a gold mine out there for Christmas books. I was able to get a hardcover copy in “like new” condition for $3.99 shipping included. It still had a sticker on the back for the $20 the book should cost. I am posting about this in June because Amazon and Abe’s books have a bunch of copies right now for you to get yourself an early Christmas present too.

ten lords a leaping laurel long

Ten Lords A Leaping Laurel Long

If you aren’t familiar with Laurel Long, run to the Library and get her Magic Nesting dolls book, or the harder to find Lady and the Lion.  They are all stunning.  Really.  I am no artist and I don’t use that word lightly.  These are the kind of picture book that make you remember to be grateful you have eyes with which to see things.  Trust me, boy or girl, old or young, you will like this book.  You will stare at the pictures for quite sometime and each time find new things you haven’t seen before.


six geese a laying laurel long

Six Geese- by Laurel Long. I still haven’t found that third hen.

I have sung and read the Twelve Days of Christmas every day this week to my girls. They both love the book.  Surprisingly, neither has asked why I am reading them a Christmas book right now.  Each double page, full-color illustration shows one of the days of Christmas.  Then each following day has all the other previous items hidden beautifully within the drawing for that day.  I haven’t even found them all because it’s cleverly done. I didn’t even know to look for them until after a few reads through because it all blends nicely. (hint: one goose has two turtle dove feathers) It adds fun to the book without taking away from how nice the pictures look.

One last note: the author says “Four Collie Birds” when I always thought “calling birds”… I believe you can find both versions if you look and that’s by no means a deal breaker for me.  I am so glad to have gotten this book to add to my Christmas collection.  Be sure to buy the hardcover copy, you will want to keep yours for years to come too.


  • Illustrator: Laurel Long
  • Publisher: Dial Books
  • ISBN:0803733577
  • Copyright:October 13, 2011
  • Laurel Long Website link

Disclaimer: I bought my copy with my own money for way less than it is worth. I will get a small commission if you buy from my affiliate link.


The Lady & The Lion – Laurel Long & Jacqueline K. Ogburn

If you are llady and the lionooking for an illustrator that will take your breath away, Laurel Long is it. Combine that with my favorite fairy tale- Beauty and the Beast, and you have a surefire winner.  “The Lady and the Lion” uniquely mixes story elements from “East of the Sun, West of the Moon” with  “Beauty and the Beast” for an action packed story boys and girls both should love.

Summary:  A merchant unknowingly steals a singing Lark from a ferocious lion’s garden. In exchange for his life and the bird, he agrees to give the lion whatever greets him first as he returns home.  Unfortunately, it is his youngest daughter who races out to see him and he then must take her to the lion’s house.  As any father would, he tries to talk her out of going, but she is brave and wants to keep her father’s word so she goes.

The lady and the lion from Laurel Long’s website. Laurellong.com

It turns out, the Lion isn’t all he seems, every night he and all his castle inhabitants turn back into their human form.  And what a beautiful prince he is!  They quickly fall in love and are happily married.  Unfortunately, there is another part to the curse, if any candlelight should touch his human form, he will turn into a dove for seven years, forced to roam the earth and never rest.

Well, accidents happen, and her wonderful half lion, half man husband is turned into a dove!  Our lady heroine  hunts the earth looking for her lost love, asking the help of the sun, moon and the North wind.    Our Lady helps battles an evil dragon/sorceress but evil escapes with her husband to a wicked castle.   Using the gifts from the sun and moon our lady breaks in and rescues her prince, riding the world of the evil enchantress and living happily ever after of course.

Lady and the lion against the dragon. From laurel Long’s website laurellong.com

Review:  The pictures alone make this story worth having, but I love that we have a strong heroine who loves her father too much to let him break his word to a lion.  (not a safe idea)  She is faithful and searches out her husband to the ends of the earth.  Don’t worry guys,  the Lion doesn’t just sit back and wait for his lady to rescue him, he battles the dragon fiercely in his lion form.  The lady and he work together in the end to defeat their enemy.  Now for some bad news.   This book is sadly out of print. Not only that, but I am not the only one who loves it.  So, if you have to have it in your collection (and I tend to think you do) you aren’t going to get it cheaply.  Even finding a copy at the local library is going to require patience and a wait list.  I snagged my copy from ebay I think.  This book is definitely a valuable favorite of mine and worth extra money.

  • Author: Laurel Long & Jacqueline K. Ogburn
  • Illustrator: Laurel Long
  • ISBN: 0-8037-2651-1
  • Publisher: Dial Books for Young Readers
  • copyright: 2003