In the tradition of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, Glenys Nellist offers ‘Twas the Morning of Easter, a lyrical storybook that celebrates the Resurrection of Jesus. Children will enjoy the rhythmic lilt each page offers as they trace the events following Good Friday through Resurrection Day. Parents will recognize the familiar wording and timing as they read aloud. In fact, this new offering may be aimed more at the parents than even the kids.
Why do I think that?
The art. Illustrated by Elena Slivanova, the book features muted pastel colors with detailed faces and objects. The scenes are beautifully drawn but lack the simplicity of bold primary colors that attract young readers. Older readers, such as parents or siblings reading the book aloud, will appreciate the warm, blended colors and realistic scenes.
The words. The wordplay based on the Christmas poem will feel most familiar to older readers, though some stanzas feel as though the rhyme is forced. It’s minor, and kids won’t notice. But if they grew up on the Christmas poem, the adults should really enjoy the word pattern that builds anticipation as the story progresses.
The book binding. The hardback book is not suitable for the youngest of readers, with paper pages and an illustrated cover flap. For longevity, keep out of toddlers and preschoolers’ reach. It’s not quite “heirloom” quality, but it can last for years if cared for properly.
The storyline begins early Easter morning in the dark as soldiers snooze and disciples stir. It follows Mary as she approaches the garden tomb, then as she meets the risen Jesus. It ends after she’s run to tell the other disciples and rejoices that evening at bedtime.
This new offering is prime for reading during Easter weekend, perhaps Saturday night as the kids anticipate Sunday morning. It offers a wonderful opportunity to remind them (and you?) of the true significance of Easter, why we look forward to it, and the events of that first Resurrection morning. Start a new tradition!