Beloved English actress Emma Thompson is also well known for her children's books. Just in time for the holiday season Penguin Group has released her latest work, "The Christmas Tale of Peter Rabbit" ($20).
A bonus for this book is a CD of Thompson reading the new story aloud. Even children who cannot read can follow the story as she follows the adventures of literature's best-known bunny.
As Christmas nears Peter is once again in trouble. Having turned over the third bowl of mincemeat for the Christmas pies, Peter is sent to his aunt's to fetch suet so his mother can finish baking. On his way he meets his cousin Benjamin, whose mother had sent him to Peter's house to fetch some raisins.
Both bunnies immediately forget their errands and start playing bunny games. They are interrupted by William Turkey who is proudly boasting about the treats Mr. McGregor is feeding him and how he overheard the McGregors will be having him for Christmas dinner. Thompson based the character on a real turkey she met at Potter's house.
Peter and Benjamin quickly realize William will not be a guest. He will be dinner. They rush to find a way to hide their friend. William's tail feathers keep getting in the way.
On Christmas Day Mrs. McGregor proudly puts on her enormous hat and goes off to church. Mr. McGregor goes out to prepare William for cooking, only to find him missing. The clever bunnies had disguised William as Mrs. McGregor's feathered hat!
When the danger is past and the McGregors are left eating winter cabbage for their Christmas dinner, William joins the bunnies for some Christmas barley cake.