From School Library Journal:
Grade 1-4?An original tale about an Irish family, set in New England "some hundred years ago." Uncle Ambrose is expected at his sister's house on Christmas Eve. The musician of the family, he is the one who makes "Christmas sing" for his niece, Frances. However, Uncle Ambrose has a bad leg, and when an evening's snow turns into a blizzard, the excited activity around the house turns to worry. He finally arrives, saved by a huge black dog that no one has ever seen before. The "angel" of Mill Street disappears into the night and the family goes to bed. The narrative has the rhythm and pacing of oral storytelling. On each double-page spread, the text is set in a narrow vertical strip next to a large illustration. While the text describes what is going on in the house, the paintings show Ambrose's trek, with the black dog always shadowing him, making the story read as if it were being simultaneously told aloud and acted out. Two wordless, double-page illustrations at the climax (Ambrose's tumble into a snowbank and rescue) add to the meticulous structure of the book. Blake's watercolors, with the blue hues of the outside set against the yellow hues of indoors and the increasingly obscuring and wind-blown snow, add nicely to this cozy and old-fashioned Christmas story.