finding a just-right Christmas book can be a struggle

THE CHRISTMAS ROSE
by Wendy Blaxland and Lucy Hennessy - Walker Books Australia, 2014
ages 2 to pre-teen & grownup
 

I was in a mad hurry and was supposed to duck into Avid Reader to pick up a copy of Noni the Pony for a gift, but as I walked towards the children’s section this one caught my eye. (And so I ended with two books instead of one.)

The illustrations drew me to it. They're fabulous; hazy and colourful at the same time, evocative and cheery. I just love them - here's a sample and you can see more here

The Christmas Rose is a very sweet tale of a little shepherd girl who wants to go with her family to visit the Saviour at his birth. 

She struggles to find a gift and eventually settles on some flowers – Christmas roses, blooming in the middle of winter.

So – it’s not the most scripturally accurate story. The wise men are there at the same time as the shepherd and there is no mention of a little shepherd girl in the Bible, but - it’s a lovely story about giving what you can and giving the best you have. (And there really is a plant called a Christmas rose that blossoms in winter!)

I particularly love the last line where the little girl is talking about Mary smiling at her: 

“Her smiled warmed me to my heart. I felt I would never be alone again.”

It's a nice reminder to smile a little more and to appreciate the gifts of life - which makes The Christmas Rose a just-right book for Christmas.

At the time of writing, it was only available via Booktopia.

Names in this book - Madelon