By: Carole Taylor (Compiler)
Publisher: Gibbs Smith
Publication Date: September 2010
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: October 2010
If you’d like to incorporate the real meaning of Christmas into your household festivities, perhaps one of the most enjoyable ways of doing it can be through song, art, and Bible readings. Christmas Eve: The Nativity Story in Engravings, Verse, and Song is the type of book you will treasure for many years to come. Lezle Williams’ woodcuts beautifully illustrate the nativity story beginning with the Virgin Mary, who kneels in prayer as the angel Gabriel speaks to her, “Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.” Each portion of the nativity story is prefaced by a familiar Christmas song, in this case, O Come All Ye Faithful.
We soon learn that Caesar Augustus has decreed that all shall be taxed and Joseph and Mary, heavy with child, must return to Bethlehem. We see Joseph leading a donkey with Mary astride its back. There was no room in the inn and the couple was forced to room with the animals. Soon Jesus is born, wrapped in swaddling clothes and placed in the manger. “The stars in the heavens Looked down where he lay The little Lord Jesus A - sleep on the hay.” And so the story continues as the shepherds come to visit and the three kings follow the star to find the baby. All the while Herod has other plans for this newborn.
This is a beautifully rendered recreation of the nativity story that families will treasure for years to come. The plush red cover with the woodcut paste down on the front and gold gilt lettering is worthy of the story you’ll find within. The Bible verses from Luke and Matthew are taken from the King James version of the Bible with the attribution underneath. The nine songs, very aptly chosen, can be played or sung before the verses are read. An equal number of gorgeous woodcuts are interspersed throughout the book. I loved everything about the book, a book that will be cherished and brought out once a year by many families to reiterate the true meaning of Christmas!
Quill says: If you’d enjoy sharing the true meaning of Christmas with your family, Christmas Eve: The Nativity Story in Engravings, Verse, and Song, would be the perfect book to start the tradition of bringing Jesus into the season in your household!