Perfect Picture Book Friday – The Gifts Of The Animals: A Christmas Tale

Hi Everyone!

I know.

It’s been way too long since we had a Perfect Picture Book Friday!

Between Halloweensie, being away, Thanksgiving, etc, there either wasn’t time in the blog schedule or I didn’t have time.  I apologize to the faithful who have posted every week and invite you to add all of your recent titles to this week’s list to make up for my absence from the front lines!

Since the Holiday Contest opens Monday and will preempt all regular posts, and then it will be the holidays, I will likely not have another PPBF post here until January, so anyone who continues to post may add their books for the next couple weeks to this list as well (or add them to the first post in January – whichever you prefer!)

I can’t wait to show you the book I’ve chosen for today.  It is so lovely!  I think even folks who don’t celebrate Christmas will find it very appealing.


Title: The Gifts Of The Animals: A Christmas Tale

Written By: Carole Gerber

Illustrated By: Yumi Shimokawara

Familius, October 2019, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 3-8

Themes/Topics: holidays (Christmas), birth of Jesus

Opening: “The gentle beasts of sky and earth
prepare their stable for Christ’s birth.

The ox that stands in the drafty shed
drops straw into a manger bed.

Brief Synopsis: The Gift of the Animals shares the miraculous offerings the humble animals in the stable gave to the baby Jesus.


text copyright Carole Gerber 2019, illustration copyright Yumi Shimokawara 2019

Links To Resources: The Friendly Beasts music video; make Christmas (or other holiday) cards for your friends and family to show them how much they mean to you; practice wrapping skills with boxes and paper from the recycling bin and make them into a pretty windowsill display.

Why I Like This Book: I am personally extra drawn to the story because when I was in kindergarten we sang The Friendly Beasts for the Christmas concert and I have always loved it.  This sweet and lovely story is beautifully written and illustrated – a real Christmas treasure.  There is something so appealing about each of the animals bringing something to make the baby’s arrival more warm and comfortable.  All of them find something perfect to contribute, even though they are just humble creatures.  Kids will love seeing all the animals and what each one has to offer, and the story’s message is one of love and giving.  One of my favorite pages (since I am a mother and have done this 🙂 ) is the page where “Mary counts His tiny toes and wraps the Child in swaddling clothes.”  I feel sure that even if the bible doesn’t specifically tell us so, Mary marveled over His perfection and couldn’t get enough of looking at Him the same way we all do with our babies.

I hope you enjoy this beautiful book as much as I do 🙂

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific links (and any other info you feel like filling out 🙂 ) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! 🙂


8 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday – The Gifts Of The Animals: A Christmas Tale

  1. Patricia Tilton says:

    I almost released my review of Carole Gerber’s book today and am glad I waited. I agree, this is a beautiful book. I loved your personal memories. Beautiful illustrations and a tender, quiet read.

  2. Sue Heavenrich says:

    Carole’s new book looks gorgeous! Thank you for sharing it – and reminding us that holidays are closer than they appear in the rear-view mirror.

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