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Library : Book Reviews > The Donkey's Dream

The Donkey's Dream
Written & Illustrated by Barbara Helen Berger

Review by: Christina Mark

      Sometimes young children get so caught up in Santa Claus, reindeer and snowmen, that very few truly know what Christmas is really all about.  This book is a great way to tell the story of the birth of Jesus Christ.
       This is a beautiful story about the Holy Birth as told by the donkey who carried the Virgin Mary and the Christ Child on that holy night. The dream that the donkey has is so poetic and is rich with religious symbols.  The donkey dreams that on his back he is carrying many things; a ship that "rocked like a cradle...shone like the moon", a fountain with waters that "splashed and sang like a child's laughter", a rose "soft as a mother's touch and sweet as the sleep of a baby" and finally "a lady full of heaven". After the donkey has made the long tiresome journey into Bethlehem, he is sore and tired until Mary invites him into the stable to see just what he has carried this long way. The donkey immediately is re-energized as he gazes down at the wondrous sight. As the donkey sees this miraculous baby for the first time, he understands his magnificent dreams and the miracle that he helped carry.
       This is a truly beautiful book, with remarkably soft, dream-like illustrations.  At the end of the book, the author includes explanations of all of the various symbols presented throughout the book. This is a beautiful piece to add to your Christmas book collection.  It would be great story to read with a child as you set up a nativity set at Christmas time.  This is truly a great book for all ages.

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