Award-winning author Sally Lloyd-Jones gives an intimate portrayal of the hope and anticipation held by Mary, Joseph and all those waiting for the Messiah to come. Her words are tender and passionate; they speak the heart of all mothers waiting for their precious little ones to be born. Coupled with Jackie Morris's gorgeous illustrations, Ms. Jones's poem becomes an awesome story of faith.
While mostly watercolor, the illustrations are remarkably bold and detailed. They depict Mary and Joseph's journey, their stay with animals in a stable, shepherds and angels, even the trek of the magi. The pages (and cover) are accented in gold (glitter on the cover). Celtic style borders are also used.
What I Like: Everything. The illustrations are amazing! This book would not be the same without them. The text is heartfelt, renewing a sense of awe in the birth of Jesus. Also, not many children's books emphasize the promise of Jesus, the messianic prophecies. This one hints at that, at the longing and yearning of the Jewish people for their Savior. It's wonderful.
What I Dislike: This not a dislike as much as a caveat: don't make this the only Nativity book in your child's library. While an excellent book, it requires much explanation, especially for younger children. The characters are never named. It's obvious who they are because of the illustrations, but someone who doesn't know the story might be confused.
Overall Rating: Excellent
Age Appeal: 4-8
Publisher Info: Little, Brown Young Readers, 2006; ISBN: 0316523917; Hardback; $16.99