One of my family’s Christmas traditions has always been to read special Advent books in the morning and evening of each day. Luke and I have continued this tradition in our own home, and today I will be reviewing the Advent books we are reading this year.
1. Everything Christmas by David Bordon and Tom Winters
Everything Christmas is not technically an Advent book; it is a Christmas countdown book with a readings that start on December 1st. Regardless of this, it definitely carries the Advent spirit. My family has read this book every Christmas for as far back as I can remember.
It is a collection of short stories, poems, songs, recipes and other miscellaneous Christmas-related entries. Some of the stories are funny, some are heartwarming, and some are so terribly cheesy it makes me want to cringe. Nevertheless, this book will always hold a special place in my heart. I can’t imagine Christmas without it.
It even inspired Luke and I start a new Christmas tradition–we will be trying a Christmas meal from another country every year from now on. This was inspired by the entries telling about Christmas meals from other cultures. It is one of our favorite parts of this book and one of the many reasons that it will continue to be one of our Advent books every year.
If you’re interested in this book, you can find it here: Everything Christmas
2. The Greatest Gift by Ann Voskamp
I’m going to be honest, I haven’t been a huge fan of this book so far. When I was younger, my mom used to read us an Advent book that Ann Voskamp wrote for kids, and I always loved it. So when I saw this book on Amazon, I decided to get it for this Christmas.
It is supposed to be a Jesse Tree book of sorts, following Christ’s lineage back through the stories of the Old Testament. But Voskamp’s flowery language is so over the top that most of the time it’s hard to follow the point she is trying to make. Her metaphors are needlessly extravagant and reading them out loud makes me feel foolish.
Luke and I have agreed that after we finish it, we will be getting rid of it. I am hoping to find a better Jesse Tree Advent book for next year. Please let me know if you have any suggestions!
If you are still interested in this book, you can find it here: The Greatest Gift
3. Jotham’s Journey by Arnold Ytreeide
Jotham’s Journey has always been my favorite Advent book. It follows the story of a young Israelite shepherd boy looking for his family, and each chapter ends on a horrible cliff hanger that makes you want to read ahead for the next day.
This is a true Advent book, designed to always start on the fourth Sunday before Christmas and end on Christmas day, with instructions on how to use it depending on the starting date of Advent. One of the best things about this book is there are several sequels, including Bartholomew’s Passage and Tabitha’s Travels, all of which are equally good, if not better.
When people ask for Advent book suggestions, this is always my go to. Each reading ends with a Scripture verse and a few questions that call you to think about your life choices in light of what is happening in the story. I highly, highly recommend this book to anyway who celebrates Advent, or even just wants a good story to read.
If you’re interested in this book, you can find it here: Jotham’s Journey
What are some of your essentials Advent books or traditions? Please share them with me in the comments. Until next week!
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