'Twas the Evening of Christmas by Glenys Nellist {Holiday Book Review & GIVEAWAY}

Can you believe we're already in the end of October? The year 2017 has flown by so quickly, I feel like I blinked and it is now almost over. There is a silver lining, though, and that is the chance to get ready for my all-time favorite holiday, Christmas! I was astonished to see Christmas decorations displayed at the stores as early as September, but I can't complain, because it only gets me even more excited about the season. One of the other ways that we've been getting a head start on preparing for the holiday season is by reading this year's new Christmas book releases. Yes, you read that right! We've started reading our very first "official" Christmas book of the season just a couple of weeks ago. One of the wonderful things is that it's a new release by one of our favorite children's authors, Glenys Nellist. 

If you've been reading my blog for quite some time, then you are probably very familiar with some of her beautiful children's ministry books. For those who aren't, Glenys has been delighting us with precious titles like Snuggle Time Psalms and Love Letters from God. Her latest title has been released just in time for the holiday season–it's called 'Twas the Evening of Christmas and if the title is sort of ringing a bell, then it's no coincidence. If you're a fan of traditional Christmas stories, then I'm sure you are all too familiar with, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas:

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;

When I was initially introduced to the title of Ms. Nellist's latest book, I wasn't 100% if this was where she was going with. As soon as we read the first few lines, I immediately knew. She had taken the treasured Christmas classic and put a new twist on it to honor the true reason for the season...Jesus! 

'Twas the evening of Christmas, when all through the town,
Every inn was so crowded , no room could be found
Tired Mary and Joseph, who went door to door,
At last found a place on a small stable floor.

For over 200 years, families have gathered on Christmas Eve to hear the much loved words of Dr. Clement C. Moore’s 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. This year, families can gather together to share the real Christmas story––the story of Jesus’ birth. 'Twas the Evening of Christmas echoes the familiar language and rhythm of Dr. Clements’ poetry, but instead of focusing on Santa, it focuses on the baby Jesus, who is, after all, the true hero of Christmas. All families will delight in this simple retelling of the most famous story ever told.

Glenys Nellist was born and raised in a little village in northern England. Her stories and poems have been published in children’s magazines where her writing reflects a deep passion for bringing the Bible to life for young children. Glenys lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with her husband, David.

In my home, it's all about Jesus and this is definitely the case during the Christmas season. I love books that honor Him, and I especially enjoy ones that I could share with my own child that spread the joy of His birth. 'Twas the Evening of Christmas takes children on a journey back to that special night in Bethlehem where our Savior was born. Shepherds and wise men come with their gifts of frankincense, gold, and myrrh to visit the manger to see the glorious newborn King, as angels sing their songs of praise. Of course, I can't forget to mention the precious farm animals that all "come to gaze at the small baby boy." 

In addition to sweet rhyming prose, the book includes gorgeous illustrations done by Elena Selivanova. As the text on each page tells the story of Jesus' birth, the beautiful images also do so with their deep colors and soft lines. One of my immediate observations was the appearance and color of Baby Jesus' eyes. Although no one knows for sure, there are hints in Bible scripture that always left a picture in my mind of how they might look. The depiction in this book is pretty close to the image I had in my head. 

I can't forget to mention the pure joy that my son and I experienced while reading this together. In fact, we've been reading it almost every day since we've received it, and I'm pretty sure that will be the case right up until the Christmas holiday. Ms. Nellist has definitely done it again and to no surprise, here! We feel so blessed to add this beautiful picture book to our holiday collection and we want to bless someone else with a copy, too. Ms. Nellist and Zonderkidz have been gracious enough to offer me a second copy of 'Twas the Evening of Christmas to give away.

One Our Everyday Harvest reader will receive a copy of 'Twas the Evening of Christmas to share the special story of Jesus' birth with their family this holiday season. To enter the giveaway, please follow the prompts, below. 

Children's Christmas Book Giveaway

Need more holiday book recommendations? Be sure to also check out one of our other favorites from Glenys Nellist, Christmas Love Letters from God. You can also connect with Ms. Nellist on Facebook and Twitter to receive updates on her most recent book releases.

I'm happy to be taking part of this fabulous blog tour to promote Twas' the Evening of Christmas. Be sure to visit the next tour stop on October 30, 2017, where Christina Embree of Refocus Ministry will be sharing her own giveaway.