Ten-year-old Rupert lives in the poorest part of Steelville, Ohio. After spending a Christmas with the Rivers, the richest family in town, Rupert’s eyes are opened to a world he never knew existed—where there is no lack of food, clothing, nor heat. The family’s guilt after Rupert loses all his prizes in a party game leads the Rivers to try to make it up to him in whatever ways they can. This story of poverty and guilt is appropriate as a read-aloud or in a small-group novel study, where students can have the opportunity to reflect on and discuss the issues of poverty, societal class structure, and family dynamics. Several Social Justice themes may also be broached in the classroom with the help of this novel, and its use of fantasy and symbolism intertwined with realism creates an engaging reading experience for students in Grade 4–8. Log in to read the full review.