It is Christmas Eve, 1881, and eight-year-old Carl Edward Browne is about to have an unforgettable adventure. . . California lore and a dash of holiday magic spice this heartwarming story of a homesick child and a wish come true.
Sample from book:
"Merry Christmas, folks! That is, if there's anyone awake yet in this lazy household!"
"It's Charlie!" Carl Edward cried. Running to the door, he threw it open. There stood Charlie Moran, dressed in his Sunday-best black suit. In his hands was a carved wooden stagecoach, complete with a team of horses in full gallop. With a smile he handed it to Carl Edward. "Here you are, partner," he said, "hand-made and one of a kind. Be careful of the horses' legs, now. They won't kick, but they might just break."
Carl Edward's eyes grew wide as he took the present from Charlie's outstretched hands. The carving was wonderfully detailed, right down to the horses' flowing manes and the spoked wheels of the stagecoach. "Wow!" he stammered. "This is beautiful. Thank you, Charlie!" Carefully he stood the carving on a table and stepped back to admire it. "It's beautiful," he repeated. "I'm going to keep it forever!"
Charlie laughed. "Forever is a long time, son. By the way, that's a mighty fine saddle you've got out there. Did Santa Claus bring you that?"
"Saddle!" yelped Carl Edward.
"Saddle?" questioned his father.
"Saddle?" echoed his mother.
"On the fence by the front gate," Charlie replied, nodding toward the door. "You can't hardly miss it. It's the one with the big red bow on it."
Carl Edward was already through the door and racing toward the gate. . . .
64 pages, illustrated