Hello! These are my daughters, Alice and Lucy. And this is a photograph I took the year Lucy (on the right) wrote me that fateful letter asking if I was Santa.
When I'd determined that she wanted the truth—the whole truth—I sat down to write her a reply. And my reply, which was posted on the Cozi.com blog, made its way around the world*. It was featured on the New York Times' parenting blog, and has been shared on Facebook and pinned on Pinterest millions of times.
I never thought it would be a picture book, though. Picture books are a pretty specific form, and, well, one heartfelt letter from a mom to her kid doesn't exactly meet the requirements.
But after talking with my editor, Arthur A. Levine, I realized it could potentially be turned into a story that would resonate ever more deeply than the original letter did. The original single letter became a series of letters exchanged over a period of years, which is very much the way it happened in my real life (this is why I had to make sure Lucy was really, really ready to know.).
The letters in Love, Santa are not only removable, they are also illustrated by the singular Lee White, whose art fills me with just the emotion I hope this book will convey.
I hope the words and pictures you and your kids have the most wonderful, meaningful holiday ever.
(*The letter also made its way into the hands of plagiarists, and sometimes people write angry missives accusing me of having copied the letter. The writer in me appreciates the irony of someone stealing another person's letter to Santa, a letter that talks about the good we all have the potential to do in the world. But, in case you're wondering: No, I did not plagiarize. And yes, I still have Lucy's letter to me and my original, dated reply to her.)