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11.12.2012

Kris Kringle's Magic ~ Blog Tour

Kris Kringle's Magic
by Diane Stringam Tolley


The STORY of a boy who became a LEGEND

Meet the boy who became the Legend.  See Santa as you've never seen him before Kris Kringle's Magic is a new addition to the legend Santa and one that will touch and stir your heart.

Kris Kringle lives in a world that devalues a group of people simply because they are different.  Elves are felt to be sub-human and on a level very slightly above livestock.  Dienes, as all elves are called regardless of their name or gender, are subject to abuse and beatings at the whim of their employers.  

But in this world Kris takes a stand, a stand that others can't understand.  Kris takes time to get to know the elves.  He visits them in their homes and works alongside them in their day-to-day tasks.  

Kris influences a young girl named Rebecca who over the years changes her views of elves thanks to Kris helping her see from the elves point of view.  As Kris helps Rebecca to learn to think for herself they come to care for each other and eventually they marry.     

With the help of the elves and Rebecca's father, Kris begins helping out of the poor children that are ignored by the upper class. But prejudices are hard to overcome and the elves are continually subjected to the baseless fears of those they serve.  When an accident caused by unsafe work conditions results in death, Kris and the elves decide that they can no longer stay where they are and so they determine to move somewhere without people, somewhere they can work and continue to share with those less fortunate.

Though set in the past the message of love, respect, standing firm in the face of wrong are important lessons that we can use today in the here and now. 

I was provided a copy of this title by the author for the purpose of this review, all opinions expressed are my own.

 ~ Blooming with Books' exclusive interview with author Diane Stringam Tolley ~

First off Diane, I'd like to thank you for taking the time from must be a busy schedule with the release of Kris Kringle's Magic

1) With Carving Angels and Kris Kringle’s Magic you must have a great love of Christmas and all
it represents, so what makes you want to use Christmas as the setting for your books?
During the Christmas season, there is a feeling that one simply does not find at any other time of the
year. A great pity, in my opinion. Love of mankind, kindness and generosity seems to exist everywhere
in the buildup to Christmas. It cannot last long enough for me. I want to live in that time and extend it
to last throughout the year. The one way I have discovered I can do that is to write stories. Stories that
keep me immersed in the Christmas spirit year round. It's a perfect world!

2) What did you use as inspiration for your description of Santa's house? Is it a house you've
known, or did you actually make a trip to the North Pole and get an inside tour with Mrs. Santa?
Oh, to get an actual tour!!! I collect Scott Gustafson paintings and his setting for Snow White is the
interior of a cabin built by men who use their hands to make their living. It is exactly how I picture a
home built by someone who makes toys as a profession. Full of colour and simple, exquisite work.
Filled with beautifully carved furniture and hand-hooked rugs. Mmmmm.

3) Why did you want to show the prejudice against the elves and their subjugation and Kris's
championing of them?
My first reason for writing Magic was to explain how Kris Kringle and the Elves ended up at the
North Pole. There had to be a reason that an entire nation would flee to a place as inhospitable as the
North Pole. Let's face it, it isn't the premier vacation destination of choice . . . Therefore, the people
who settled there had to do so, either because they are basically masochistic and love to suffer, or
because they were fleeing something so horrible that even the wastelands of the frozen north looked
wonderful. I chose the latter. That they had become so oppressed, their only choice was to flee. Rather
like the Israelites in Egypt. It was also a way to illustrate some of Kris' finer qualities. His courage. His
kindness and his great love.

4) Do you feel that open minded observation can change fears and prejudices that a person is
raised in? Or do the changes occur because beneath everything the person is actually open
minded to begin with and just needs the opportunity to express this?
Look at the children. Those who have so recently come from their Heavenly Father. With very little
encouragement, they love anyone and everyone. Each of us has this same divine core. I believe that, at
this core, we want to be open-minded. To love and understand each other. The world and the situations
in which we are individually raised coats this core more and more deeply beneath layers of greed,
ambition, prejudice and ignorance. I believe that changes in our fears and prejudices can occur if
those divine roots can be uncovered. If, through interaction and education, we can begin to know and
understand each other. We just need the opportunity.

5) What is your favorite part about writing?
I get to create worlds. It gives me a brief glimpse into eternity.

6) Where do you get your inspiration from?
Occasionally from dreams. (I have some doozies!) But mostly, my inspiration is drawn from
observation. For example, I was looking at a picture of Santa Claus, coloured by one of my
grandchildren and I thought to myself, “I wonder who made his sleigh?” Carving Angels came from
that. I was camping in the Great Outdoors last summer and, while shivering in my sleeping bag,
wondered who on earth “would live anywhere colder than this?” My thoughts turned to those who do
live further north and under much more 'shivery' conditions. And the reasons that would make them do
so. Kris Kringle's Magic was born.

7) Is any character in Kris Kringle’s Magic based on anyone you know?
The character of Kris is based on my Husband. He is the kindest person I know. And has personal
integrity and courage. And is very opinionated about how other peoples are and should be treated.
And Rebecca is me. But better.

Again thank-you for your time, Diane, and for letting us get to know the soul behind the book.  I hope your readers find Kris Kringle's Magic as enjoyable and enlightening as I did!