Long ago, on a silent night

Julie Berry, 1974-

Book - 2019

A mother talks to her baby, recounting the Christmas story, and linking it to the love and hope she feels for her own child.

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Subjects
Genres
Christmas fiction
Picture books
Published
New York : Orchard Books, an imprint of Scholastic Inc 2019.
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 30 cm
Audience
Ages 0-3.
ISBN
9781338277722
1338277723
Main Author
Julie Berry, 1974- (author)
Other Authors
Annie Won (illustrator)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Berry, best known for her award-winning young adult books, here presents a nativity story that links the biblical tale with the early days of a multiracial family in a fairly modern but unspecified time period. The text, which at times is a bit singsong, juxtaposes the two events in words and pictures. As the modern family brings their baby home, saying, I see a miracle in you, long ago and far away, a mother holds a child: she wrapped him snug, made his bed in hay / he was her gift that Christmas day. Both families sing to their children, learn from them, and love them. Unless readers are already familiar with the Bible story, a point or two can be obscure—Simeon and Anna paced the floor, for example—but the art offers links, when, with a turn of the page, we see the new child's grandparents. Won's bold pictures are full of energy and delight, and tiny touches—stars here, wind chimes there—add to the appeal. These families, transcending race and skin color, radiate love. Preschool-Grade 1. Copyright 2019 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Berry and Won nimbly interweave a modern infant's familial reception with the story of Christ's birth. In consistent end rhyme, text draws on the legendary tale, each phrase ending with an italicized nod to the modern child ("Long ago, and far away/ A baby was born on Christmas Day.../ This wonder was seen by a lucky few./ I see a miracle in you"). Images layer and juxtapose the two stories: in one spread, desert-crossing travelers and camels look out at a guiding star from the left; at right, a skyline represents the modern family's city home. Won's dewy illustrations evoke the nostalgic feel of a CGI-animated holiday short film as characters in a range of skin tones move through celestial swirls, the modern family celebrates Christmas amid twinkle lights and decor, and animals celebrate the Christ child. A story of welcome, brimming with joy. Ages up to 3. (Sept.) Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

A luminous celebration of unconditional love depicts a gentle Nativity story that reflects the joy, hope and promise of every new baby in families throughout the world. A first picture book by the award-winning author of The Passion of Dolssa. Illustrations.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

A mother talks to her baby, recounting the Christmas story, and linking it to the love and hope she feels for her own child.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

The miracle of Christmas comes alive in this luminous celebration of unconditional love and the joy and hope and promise in every child from Printz Honor recipient Julie Berry!Long ago, in a dusty barn, a mother took a child in her arms, wrapped him snug, made his bed in the hay. He was her gift that Christmas Day. There's no sweeter gift than a life so new. My best gift, little one, is you.In this poignant and lyrical story by Printz Honor recipient Julie Berry, the miracle of Christmas and the promise in every new child come together in a luminous celebration of unconditional love and hope. With tender, incandescent illustrations by Annie Won, the wonder of the nativity story and the marvel of every baby come alive in a wholly extraordinary book for families everywhere.A special, beautiful keepsake storybook to read, share, and cherish every Christmas season with the ones you love.