Posts tagged ‘forgiveness’


Saint Patrick the Forgiver: The History and Legends of Ireland’s Bishop

Written and Illustrated by Ned Bustard

As a historian, I am familiar with the life of Saint Patrick, but this beautiful picture book written in rhyme presents Patrick in a novel way for both children and adults.

The line cut illustrations in brilliant colors combined with the rhymes that are fun to read and roll off the tongue compel readers to revisit the book and its lessons. Bustard integrates the larger-than-life legends about Patrick, but lays bare his personal human struggles. How could he forgive the slave captors who had kidnapped him and obey God’s calling to voluntarily return to the site of his captivity? Children immediately realize his torment and feel how difficult it might be to forgive.

This book is a good choice for Christian parents seeking to explain the role of St. Patrick in Ireland’s history or for educators teaching about the St. Patrick holiday. It teaches them a valuable lesson about forgiveness.

Highly recommended for children of all ages and adults who enjoy reading a well-written rhyming picture book that educates the mind while pleasing the eye.

Reviewed by Barbara Ann Mojica, children’s book author, for Net Galley


#NeedlesTheForgottenChristmasTree virtual blog tour and giveaway



Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree

Written by Richard Wagner

Illustrated by Sydni Kruger

Ages 3+ | 38 Pages

Publisher: Mascot Kids | ISBN-13: 9781645437086

Publisher’s Synopsis: The world is not always a perfect place. Needles, a scraggly little tree, must endure criticism, laughter, and setbacks to realize his goal of becoming a beautiful Christmas tree.

This is a story of dreams, desires, hope, determination, and never giving up. It also offers the observation that what others think is beautiful may not really matter. Beauty is truly in the eyes of the beholder and paired with the spirit of Christmas, maybe we can make the world just a little more perfect!



Barnes and Noble

Author’s Website


Richard Wagner grew up in Southern California. When he was fourteen years old, a business friend of his father’s had a small Christmas tree delivered as a thank-you. Their family already had a large tree decorated in the house. Not being able to find anyone who needed a tree, that small Christmas tree stood outside by itself for the remainder of the Christmas holiday. Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree is a tribute to that little tree and what might have been, but more importantly, to all the beauty, goodness, and hope that Christmas brings to us all. Mr. Wagner continues to reside in Southern California with his wife and two children.

For more information, visit



Needles: The Forgotten Tree

Written by Richard Wagner

Illustrated by Sydni Kruger

What a perfect picture book to celebrate the meaning of the season! Needles is a short, scruffy evergreen tree growing on a Christmas tree farm. The adjoining trees make fun of him, but Needles firmly believes he will achieve his goal to become a beautiful Christmas tree in someone’s home.

The trees are cut down and brought to market but as day after day passes, Needle’s friends are chosen, while no one seems interested in him. When the owner of the lot, decides to gift Needles to a friend, Needles is elated. Now he will have a home! Will he achieve his dream to become a beautiful Christmas tree?

The story contains many twists and turns. Children (and the adults who read this story to them) remember that the promises of faith and hope are at the heart of the Christmas season. Even more important that sharing and caring for others is the true spirit of Christmas.

A perfect holiday choice for a bedtime story or read-aloud with elementary school children.


Enter for a chance to win a copy of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree, autographed by Richard Wagner.

One (1) winner receives:

– An autographed copy of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree



Monday, December 5, 2022The Children’s Book ReviewA book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Tuesday, December 6, 2022Me Two BooksA book activity to pair with Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Wednesday, December 7, 2022Barbara Ann Mojica’s BlogA book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Thursday, December 8, 2022Confessions of a Book AddictA book giveaway of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Friday, December 9, 2022icefairy’s Treasure ChestA book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Monday, December 12, 2022Book Zone ReviewsAuthor Interview with Richard Wagner
Tuesday, December 13, 2022Satisfaction for Insatiable ReadersA guest article by Richard Wagner
Wednesday, December 14, 2022Heart to HeartAuthor Interview with Richard Wagner
Thursday, December 15, 2022J.R.s Book ReviewsA book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Friday, December 16, 2022The Momma SpotA book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Monday, December 19, 2022The Fairview ReviewA book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Tuesday, December 20, 2022The Review WireA book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Wednesday, December 21, 2022Chatty Patty’s PlaceA book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree
Thursday, December 22, 2022Crafty Moms ShareA book review of Needles, the Forgotten Christmas Tree


Where I Get My Super Power

Written by Ageno H. Monica

This is a different slant on the Biblical story of Samson and Delilah. In this picture book, Samson possesses exceptional strength which he uses to keep bullies at bay. Delilah is his best friend, but one-day local bullies offer her all kinds of riches and power if she could uncover the secret of his strength.

The bullies convince Delilah to sell out her best friend. Samson is strong mentally as well as physically. Will he continue to resist?

Cute illustrations and simple text make this book appealing to young children under the age of eight.




E is for Ethics: How to Talk to Kids About What Matters Most

Written by Ian James Corlett

Illustrated by R.A. Holt


The author is a Children’s TV writer and animator by trade. Distressed by the fact that schools no longer include ethics and civics teaching in their curriculum, he decided that he and his wife must assume that responsibility. Many years ago when his children were young, he and his wife decided to set one night a week as a family discussion time. Corlett developed a series of twenty-six stories that exemplified different aspects of moral behavior. Following each story, the children engaged in interactive questions for discussion as well as suggested activities.

The following is a list of the topics discussed in these stories: honesty, understanding, forgiveness, courage, perseverance, tact, politeness, loyalty, gratitude, truthfulness, sincerity, integrity, citizenship, responsibility, kindness, generosity, helpfulness, empathy, charity, trust, willingness, respect, fairness, acceptance, patience, and effort. There are simple colorful illustrations of a young child like the character of Lucy or Eliot featured in each story. A few famous quotations are sprinkled throughout.

This book provides a wonderful opportunity for parents to spend time getting to know what their children are thinking as well as fulfilling a necessary parental responsibility to guide and form a child’s character and values. Recommended for all ages in the family to enjoy and share.

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Dear God, Please Forgive Me for Hating Jessica Maloney

Written by Junia Wonders

Illustrated by Divin Meir


At the beginning of the story, the reader meets the author who is writing a letter to God asking for forgiveness for hating Jessica Maloney. Don’t be mistaken; this book is not preachy or religious in the strict sense of the word.

Plot centers around the author, her friend Minty and a boy named Andy who are classmates in a private school. Jessica Maloney is the most popular and prettiest girl in school, but she is far from perfect. She uses her status as the headmaster’s daughter as an advantage to bully other students that she sees as inferior to her. Our narrator is called “Four-Eyed Freak, gets her dress slit, gum placed in her braids, and a book from the library ripped into shreds. Her best friend, Minty, has her pigtails cut, and a friend named Andy, who has hygiene problems, becomes an outcast due to Jessica’s shenanigans. Jessica throws a tantrum in gym class and gets away with it because the teacher is afraid of losing her job.

There seems to be no way of fighting back until our narrator concocts a clever plan. She teams up with Minty and Andy to draw “unflattering” posters of Jessica that suddenly appear all over the school. What is on those posters and how will they help teach Jessica a lesson? At the end of the story the narrator explains that all three children feel guilty and apologize to their teacher and even to Jessica.

Nice example for children to teach how to deal with bullies without escalating the bullying.

This book is targeted to children ages six to nine, which seems appropriate. The illustrator’s beautiful watercolor pictures with pencil details add lots of depth and emotion to the story. Characters are multiracial. Nice book to have handy for parents and teachers to open up a productive discussion on the nature and types of bullying. Available in kindle and paperback formats.

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