Tuesday, November 29, 2016

A Christmas book for my daughter

My five-year-old daughter likes princesses and Christmas, both of which come together in A Royal Christmas to Remember. The book is part of The Princess Parables series produced by ZonderKids, and it's geared towards children between the ages of 4 and 8.

The story follows five princesses named Joy, Grace, Faith, Charity, and Hope, each of whom embody the virtue they are named after. As they get ready to celebrate Christmas, they decorate the castle and talk about what they hope to receive Christmas morning. The night before Christmas thieves break into the castle, tie up the princesses, and begin to loot the place until they are captured by the palace guards. The whole scenario struck me as odd, but it didn't seem to phase my daughter. The story ends with the princesses giving out gifts to the villagers who were also robbed by the bandits. The point of the adventure is that rather than being focused on getting things, we should instead imitate God, who gave up everything, even his own Son. The whole idea comes from the parable of the rich fool in Luke 12:15-21.

The anti-consumerism and pro-giving message is a welcome reminder to both children and parents that the Christmas season is not a time for storing up treasures on earth.

The book has one significant error worth mentioning. It describes Luke 12:15-21 as "the parable of the Rich Young Ruler." However, the rich young ruler was not a parable, but an actual even that took place during the ministry of Jesus and which occurs in Luke 18. This seemingly minor mistake suggests that the authors and the editors aren't as biblically literate as I would expect of Christian authors and publishers. I can still recommend this book, but it's a good reminder to exercise discernment even when getting children's books from trusted publishers.

I received this book from the publisher for the purpose of writing this review.

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