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Little One, We Knew You'd Come Hardcover – October 4, 2006
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From School Library Journal
PreS–Although the illustrations depicting Mary and Joseph's arrival in Bethlehem and the birth of Baby Jesus make clear that this is a Christmas story, the simple text sings a universal hymn of anticipation and love from a parent to a child. (People were sleeping. We didn't care./Good news, we sang, our baby is here!/Our baby has come, our darling one,/Oh, the day that you were born). The sumptuous watercolor and gold-leaf illustrations, bordered with cherries, peacock feathers, flowers, and stars, portray an arid yet animal-filled landscape enlivened by the gloriously bedecked angels and kings. Of course, none of this finery outshines the little one, who easily holds center stage.–Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library
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"... Lloyd-Jones's soothing, lyrical text expresses the universal love felt by parents awaiting the arrival of a new addition to the family. Numerous intimate portraits of the Holy Family, surrounded by realistic renderings of tranquil animals make this a fine volume for sharing. The gentle rhyming verses here may invite introductory discussion of not only the Nativity, but the joyous miracle of birth anytime of year." -- Publishers Weekly
"A brief, poetic text and stunning illustrations flow together with magically successful pacing in this exquisite retelling of the Nativity story... Though this is a Nativity story, its message of awe and transcendent love will also touch new parents welcoming their own babies or expectant parents awaiting a miracle child of their own." -- Kirkus
"the words are a litany of celebration and praise for the miracle of birth-and especially the birth of the Christ Child born in the manger long ago. But... [the words] can be said to any child, at Christmas or on a birthday. This is an absolutely gorgeous book. The illustrations... the gold inlays on each page make the pictures seem like illuminated manuscripts. Sacred pages for a holy Babe, for our holy children, the ones we love. I also celebrate the meaning behind `We Knew You'd Come.' Some things our hearts know, and have always known. What a divine gift this book is for us all." -- ChinaBerry
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Award-winning author Sally Lloyd-Jones gives an intimate portrayal of the hope and anticipation held by Mary, Joseph and all those waiting for the Messiah to come. Her words are tender and passionate; they speak the heart of all mothers waiting for their precious little ones to be born. Coupled with Jackie Morris's gorgeous illustrations, Ms. Jones's poem becomes an awesome story of faith.
While mostly watercolor, the illustrations are remarkably bold and detailed. They depict Mary and Joseph's journey, their stay with animals in a stable, shepherds and angels, even the trek of the magi. The pages (and cover) are accented in gold (glitter on the cover). Celtic style borders are also used.
What I Like: Everything. The illustrations are amazing! This book would not be the same without them. The text is heartfelt, renewing a sense of awe in the birth of Jesus. Also, not many children's books emphasize the promise of Jesus, the messianic prophecies. This one hints at that, at the longing and yearning of the Jewish people for their Savior. It's wonderful.
What I Dislike: This not a dislike as much as an admonition: don't make this the only Nativity book in your child's library. While an excellent book, it requires much explanation, especially for younger children. The characters are never named. It's obvious who they are because of the illustrations, but someone who doesn't know the story might be confused.
Overall Rating: Very good!
Tanya -- Christian Children's Book Review