Holiday Book Review: ‘The Night Santa Got Lost: How NORAD Saved Christmas’

Books Family GeekMom Household Gadgets

This holiday season, national defense fellow Michael Keane, with award-winning illustrator Michael Garland, has penned a delightful children’s book in the spirit of Clement Clark Moore’s poem “The Night Before Christmas.” It celebrates the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and the armed forces.

The Night Santa Got Lost: How NORAD Saved Christmas is a must for any children of military families on that are on your holiday shopping lists! We were pleased to have a sneak peek at this book just in time for this holiday season.

It’s a tradition in the Vollmer household, from when the kids were old enough to understand Santa Claus: we open up the NORAD Santa Tracker with the kids and from midnight at the International Date Line, we enjoy seeing where Santa is making his gift deliveries. Using the NORAD Santa Tracker is a great geography lesson, inspiring children to learn about the other countries on Santa’s route, their traditions, and their time zones.

The book starts with Santa on his usual Christmas Eve night travels, with NORAD keeping an eye on him, as always. Bad weather knocks Santa out of the sky… and off NORAD’s radar screens! Oh no! Jets are scrambled! Santa is found having crashed, and having wasted several hours of his precious Christmas evening while he and his reindeer were in distress. How will he get all the children’s gifts delivered?

That’s where NORAD and their amazing command and control abilities come to the rescue! They mobilize not just the U.S. armed forces, but call upon Canada and NATO also. Readers are greeted with delightful images of soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen coming to Santa’s assistance.

The author has some creative fun with the story, having NORAD provide Santa with classified maps that include the naughty and nice lists, and letting the U.S. Special Operations command take the lead on getting gifts into those countries that the U.S. might not normally be welcome. A supplement follows after the story, providing some non-fiction information about the military functions featured in the story, such as NORAD, the U.S. Transportation Command and the U.S. Special Operations Command. It also provides a timeline of military members playing Santa Claus throughout history.

The illustrations are vibrant, with a CGI-esque 3D quality. The colors are simple and the military members’ uniforms are left generic enough to let any military child relate that it could be his/her parent written right into the story.

The Night Santa Got Lost: How NORAD Saved Christmas is designed for children ages 4-8, the hardcover book retails for $14.95, and is available at major booksellers, such as Amazon. The book is available in both Kindle and Nook formats as well.

Liked it? Take a second to support GeekDad and GeekMom on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!