Welcome! This page contains images of our book, as well as lots of information. Scroll at your leisure or use the links below to jump to specific sections of interest. Please contact our publisher, Betsy Cordes: / 415-254-7828 for additional information or to schedule an interview.

About the story (and the story behind the story)

About artist Adam McCauley

About author Albert Bigelow Paine

About publisher Betsy Cordes/That's So Enterprises

Download a PDF press release

High resolution versions of the images below (including versions without the embedded copyright line) are also available. Please contact Betsy Cordes: / 415-254-7828 for assistance. Thanks for your interest in our book!


Meet the mischievous but kind-hearted Mr. Dog: a worldly raconteur who delights in telling tales of Santa Claus's visits to Mr. Man's house. His friends at the Hollow Tree Inn—Mr. Crow, Mr. 'Coon, and Mr. Possum—have never heard of Santa Claus. They are mesmerized by Mr. Dog's descriptions of the jolly old man and the gifts he brings to those who hang a stocking by the fire on Christmas Eve. Naturally, they'd like to entice Santa to the Hollow Tree... So Mr. Dog decides to play along!


"Christmas at the Hollow Tree Inn" by Albert Bigelow Paine with illustrations by Adam McCauley is a timeless tale from 1898, brought to life anew with McCauley's richly detailed color illustrations. Destined to become a Christmas classic, the book was produced by the family-run independent publisher That's So Enterprises in November 2014. A highly successful Kickstarter campaign helped fund production and promotion of the book.


Betsy Cordes, Creative Director of That's So Enterprises explains: 
"Christmas at the Hollow Tree Inn" was written by Albert Bigelow Paine in 1898 and its reading has been a beloved Christmas Eve tradition in our family (where it's fondly known as "Mr. Dog's Christmas") for almost that long. My dad's parents read it to him and his brother. My dad, in turn, introduced it to me when I was two years old, and he's been reading it to me, my brother, and our growing family every Christmas Eve—for nearly 50 years now. It's just that good! 

"Yet the story has been out of print for decades, and we seemed to be among the very few who knew of it. Quite recently, it dawned on us that we could publish a new edition ourselves and, with any luck, inspire a Christmas Eve tradition for many more families. Because we wanted to maintain creative control over the look and feel of this treasure, we formed a publishing company (That's So Enterprises) to do just that.

"We felt the text was perfect, but that the story would have much more appeal to modern sensibilities if we could find just the right artist to bring it to life with full color illustrations throughout the book. And we found him! Adam McCauley immediately appreciated the slightly subversive appeal of Mr. Dog and knew he was a character that contemporary families would love. He chose to render the Hollow Tree folks and their setting in crow quill pen and ink—a demanding technique that, in Adam's masterful hand, produces a richly detailed image. The technique itself is perfectly suited to the Victorian era of the story, but Adam's images sit satisfyingly somewhere in between then and now."


Adam McCauley works out of his studio in his home in the sunny Mission district in San Francisco with his wife, designer and musician Cynthia Wigginton and their cat Gertrude. He's a professor in the amazing Illustration department at California College of the Arts. Adam enjoys illustrating, playing drums, and making things. His illustrations have appeared in magazines, books, collateral and campaigns world wide. Adam's work has been included in group shows in New York, San Francisco, Osaka, Los Angeles, Tokyo and Nashville.

Adam's clients have included Time, MTV, Apple Computer, the New York Times, Itaú Bank, Smithsonian, Levi's, Viking, Harper Collins, The Folio Society, Chronicle Books, SF Museum of Modern Art, Victoria & Albert Museum, Microsoft, and many others.

Adam's awards have included American Illustration, Society of Illustrators, Communication Arts, Print Regional Design Annual, 3 x 3, and How Magazine. He received the Society of Illustrator's 51 Gold Medal for his illustrated monster stamp endpapers for the book "The Monsterologist: A Memoir In Rhyme" by Bobbi Katz, as well as the Society of Illustrator's 55 Silver Medal for "Simplicity City", commissioned by "Oh No, Not Ghosts!," by Richard Michelson with illustrations by Adam, was chosen to be included in AIGA's Top 100 show for 2007, "The Monsterologist" was in AIGA's Top 100 Show for 2009.


Albert Bigelow Paine (1861-1937) was a prolific and broadly talented American author and biographer whose books and stories remain beloved by children and adults alike. After a ten year career as a photographer and later as a dealer in photographic supplies, he sold his company and, at the age of 34, became a writer full-time. He is perhaps most famous for his three-volume biography of Mark Twain, with whom he lived and traveled for four years. In France, where he lived for several years, he remains well-known for his biography of Joan of Arc, which earned him the distinction of Chevalier in the Legion of Honor. His other writings include several popular travel books, two novels, and four story-books for children about the Deep Woods people, who dwell in the Hollow Tree.


Betsy is an art brand advisor and independent publisher. Mr. Dog's Christmas at the Hollow Tree Inn is her first book. It's a labor of love that's brought together many of her skills (art direction, project management, print production, promotion) and passions (Christmas, family traditions, a great story, beautiful artwork) in one beautiful package. She hopes the book will endear Mr. Dog and his friends to many new readers, because she'd love to reintroduce more stories from Albert Bigelow Paine's "Hollow Tree" series in the future!

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