Monday, November 25, 2013

Book Review and Giveaway: "The Sparkle Box"

I was blessed to be sent a copy of "The Sparkle Box" to review for you, but I truly had no idea how this children's book would impact me as an adult with the timeless spirit of the true meaning of Christmas. I found that at the heart of this story is the message that my family strives for, found in Matthew 25:35. 

The author Jill Hardie has woven a heartfelt story about the season of giving against the backdrop of the commercialism the world tries to bring to this blessed time of year. She was inspired after she and her family chose to place a gift for Jesus under their Christmas tree as a way of bringing more meaning to the holiday and instead of the world's holiday commercialism, there was joy and peace in their hearts. 

In Jill's story, a little boy named Sam is drawn to a sparkly box his family has placed on their mantel for the Christmas season. Sam learns an important lesson when he opens "The Sparkle Box" and his mother explains to him that the acts of kindness their family does for other people are, in fact, a gift for Jesus because Jesus said in His Word that whatever we do for people in need, we do for Him.  Their acts of kindness are written down and placed in "The Sparkle Box" as each one represents a gift for Jesus. I love that each book comes with its own fold-out "Sparkle Box" included so children and families can put the message of this story into action in their own homes during the Christmas season. 

This video preview of the book gives you a glimpse into the heart of the story, so wonderfully told through the words and pictures.

I was immediately taken with the beautiful cover of the hardcover book, geared for ages 4 to 8, and the gorgeous illustrations throughout the book by illustrator Christine Kornacki that bring to life Jill's story. 
The book can be purchased for $19.99 through the Ideals Books website here.

It is the author's hope that this story will spark a new Christmas tradition in your family this year. One of you will win a hardcover copy of this book to share with a special young person in your life! To enter, leave a comment below with an act of kindness you have either received or given and let me know who you would like to share this book with, if you are the winner. Winner must reside in the US or Canada. Entries close on Tuesday, November 26 at 6:00 pm EST.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.


  1. me and kids give to a food drive every year

  2. I always enter for the samples, then give them to a family I know in need. At random times throughout the year I go through my kitchen and donate food. Yesterday I found $20 in a parking lot and gave it to the coach of a ballteam to help with their expenses.

    1. Oh and I'd read this to my son. Once he "outgrows" it we'd pass it on to my friend that's pregnant with twins.

    2. Recently, a friend of mine was told she had a tumor on her brain. To help alleviate her stress, my family and I have tried out our new recipies to make dinner for her and her children. Not only has it given her more time to relax, we've had a blast cooking! I would share this book with her young daughters and my son- they loving being read to!

  3. My act of kindness is an ongoing one. There are two women who are red batters with my mom. They live together and neither is in the best of health. Several months ago they adopted a dog for security...they live in a bad part of town. Anyhow, I purchased the dog license for them and that's how it started. Since then I have been to the house several times to do tasks for them that they just can't do anymore. I have also gone to the store for them. They are very independent and strong-willed women and I just want them to be able to remain in their home for as long as possible. I would share this book with my granddaughter Helena. She is also a very strong-willed girl...much like her Gamma, who has overcome many adversaries in her young life. So many have been so kind to her that I know as she grows older, she will want to do the same...

  4. Two years ago, during a very rough patch of time, we woke up a couple of days before Christmas. My son went to take out the trash and came running to me, shouting and out of breath, "Mommy, there's a bike and a horse out front! Mommy, come see! Mommy, let's go! Come on!"... I said," What? What are you talking about? " He pulled me out to the front porch and lo and behold, there was a bike with a huge bow with a nametag with my son's name on it, a rocking horse with a nametag with my daughter's name on it, and a pack from Fandango with two movie tickets inside with my husband's and my names on it. We never figured out who blessed us that year, but I always have warm thoughts every Christmas since just remembering that day.

  5. Yes! You are blessed to have received. I think it is a great gift around the holidays.

  6. This is such a neat concept. We always try to give some gifts to the school to hand out to some of the other students who need something special. This is a great way to help the kids learn what Christmas really is.

  7. Congratulations Janette Perryman Maxwell! Please e-mail me with your mailing address to

  8. Oh it sounds like such a special book! I wish I hadn't gotten here too late for the giveaway.