Eleven-year-old Patty Pringle has a secret. You see, she believes in Santa Claus. Patty’s family is going through a hard time after suffering a terrible loss. Thinking it might help, she answers a help wanted ad to work for Santa. When Patty and her younger brother Sean go to the mall to meet Santa and drop off her resume, Sean steals some of the letters to Santa. Patty learns of the theft and is determined to return the letters to Santa, particularly after learning some long held family secrets. Patty teams up with an elf, Agent 12-25, and travels to the North Pole where they discover it is too late for Santa to deliver the toys to those children. To save Christmas for them, Patty and Agent 12-25 set off to deliver all the toys, but it has to be done by midnight on Christmas Eve. Ultimately, Patty will learn that things are not always what they seem, and not everyone, even at the North Pole, is trustworthy.
Chris Kringle’s Cops: The First Mission by Ellwyn Autumn is not your usual child’s Christmas story for sure. The author has created a strong cast of characters – from Patty’s grieving, somewhat dysfunctional family to disgruntled elves and helpers, to a Santa and Mrs Claus completely different from those normally portrayed, as well as one really bad guy. The plot moves along at a rapid pace and the reader will quickly get caught up in the story line. The ending has a little twist that the reader might find slightly abrupt but interesting. If a reader is looking for a strongly written adventure, they can’t go wrong here.