Baskets of Books for Easter {and a Giveaway!}

by | Mar 16, 2017 | Baskets of Books for Easter, Books, Easter, Giveaway, Picture Books | 0 comments

Easter is just one month from today and I’ve been trying to round up gifts to fill our children’s Easter Baskets! (Easter Sunday falls on April 16th this year which also happens to be my parent’s 40th Wedding Anniversary as well as Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI’s 90th birthday!) 

As I have shared before, I’m always collecting books to give our children on their birthdays, Easter, and Christmas. Some of the books I have purchased from Amazon, Sacred Heart Books and Gifts (Free shipping for orders over $40 with coupon code JMJ650, expires March 25th), Catholic Child, or St. Augustine Academy Press, some have been purchased on sale at local bookstores, and some have been given to me as review copies from the authors or publishers.

In addition to new books, I usually include something that represents each child’s patron saint (or something representing one of their personal favorite saints), art and/or writing supplies, a small toy or two (I love using LEGO sets as filler instead of Easter grass!), and some symbolic Easter candy (I’ve made my own in the past, including these Easter Symbol Chocolate Coins, or purchased it at the store) in the Easter Baskets. I also usually put together a “Family Easter Basket“, incorporating the various Easter symbols (you can find tons of gift ideas based on Easter Symbols here).

Below you will find the list of books we’ve picked out this year for each of our children. Be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom for a chance to win a book from a basket of books I have to share with all my dear visitors here at Shower of Roses!

Note: Before I share the book list, I do want to remind you all that I haven’t read most of these books yet. I made my decisions based on recommendations, reviews, publishers, and the past work of some of the authors/illustrators.

.: Captain – Age 16 :.

Manual for Spiritual Warfare
A fierce war rages for your soul. Are you ready for battle? Like it or not, you are at war. You face a powerful enemy out to destroy you. You live on the battlefield, so you can’t escape the conflict. It’s a spiritual war with crucial consequences in your everyday life and its outcome will determine your eternal destiny. You must engage the Enemy. And as you fight, you need a Manual for Spiritual Warfare.

This guide for spiritual warriors will help you recognize, resist, and overcome the Devil’s attacks. St. Paul urges us to “fight the good fight of the faith” (1 Tim 6:12). Take this Manual for Spiritual Warfare with you into battle.

Charcoal Grey, Premium UltraSoft, rounded corners, embossed cover, silver foil, black ribbons, silver edges, and red accented interior.  {We had the boys’ names added to the front covers.}

A Man Cleansed by God: A Novel Based on the Life of Saint Patrick

The story of St. Patrick’s life is a dynamic tale of high drama and intense spiritual force. A generation ago, the American Catholic novelist John Edward Beahn retold that story as a biographical novel based on The Confession, Patrick’s famous autobiographical work. A Man Cleansed by God: A Novel on St. Patrick’s Confession was published in 1959, a vivid narrative with intriguing speculations about the details of Patrick s experience that have been lost to history.

A Shepherd in Combat Boots: Chaplain Emil Kapaun of the 1st Cavalry Division  
A well-documented biography of an extraordinary person, Emil Kapun, who was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, Medal of Honor, and named “Servant of God” by the Vatican. Try to escape, the American soldiers warned Catholic Chaplain Emil Kapaun. However, he refused to leave his wounded comrades and became a POW. His decision marked a turning point in the inspiring life of this young priest. Kapaun’s faith and courage on the battlefield and in prison set an example for hundreds of young American captives. When they were starving, he stole food for them. If the men needed encouragement, he defied prison rules and prayed with them. When the communist guards mocked his faith in God, the chaplain publicly defended his beliefs. When Kapaun became sick, the communist denied him medicine and watched him die in their vermin-infested “hospital.” However, they could not extinguish the memories of how he served other prisoners.

Scripture Illuminated

An illuminated manuscript is a text supplemented with decorations-such as initials, borders, and miniature illustrations. They naturally lend themselves to religious texts, and in Scripture Illuminated you have the opportunity to try your hand at coloring some illuminated texts that depict and supplement stories from the Bible and Scripture verses.
Coloring, while listening to audio books, is still one of Captain’s favorite ways to relax. 

.: Ranger – Age 15 :.

Manual for Spiritual Warfare
A fierce war rages for your soul. Are you ready for battle? Like it or not, you are at war. You face a powerful enemy out to destroy you. You live on the battlefield, so you can’t escape the conflict. It’s a spiritual war with crucial consequences in your everyday life and its outcome will determine your eternal destiny. You must engage the Enemy. And as you fight, you need a Manual for Spiritual Warfare.

This guide for spiritual warriors will help you recognize, resist, and overcome the Devil’s attacks. St. Paul urges us to “fight the good fight of the faith” (1 Tim 6:12). Take this Manual for Spiritual Warfare with you into battle.

Charcoal Grey, Premium UltraSoft, rounded corners, embossed cover, silver foil, black ribbons, silver edges, and red accented interior.

A Man Born Again: A Novel Basked on the Life of Saint Thomas More
Status and wealth, power and fame: St. Thomas More had them all. As a wise and popular statesman, internationally recognized scholar, and Lord Chancellor of England, More was perhaps the most highly respected Englishman of his day until his conscience required that he lay down his life for his Catholic faith.

Republished by TAN. First published in 1954. 

Nice Going, Red: The Story of a Boy who “Couldn’t Take It”
(also available directly from St. Augustine Academy Press)
Frank “Red” Devlin is the best fighter in town–trouble is, he’s always getting into scraps over something or other. He just can’t stand being teased. He even bristles when his friend, Lieutenant Carroll, spots him smoking and playing craps with Clyde White and Bert Stone, and takes him to task for it. Red wants to be good, honest, but events just always seem to conspire against him. Will he learn to hold his own in the face of peer pressure, or will he give in and go along, even when he knows it’s wrong?

From the author of “Brass Knuckles” and “Midget” comes this third novel, “Nice Going, Red,” a coming-of-age drama about a boy who has what it takes to make a great young man…but when it comes to his fear of looking foolish, he always seems to give in and take the easy road.

Windows Into Christ: A Coloring Book for Prayer and Meditation

Chartres Cathedral has been a holy pilgrimage destination for centuries, and now colorists of all ages can become pilgrims as well in a creative and contemplative way through Windows into Christ: A Coloring Book for Prayer and Meditation, featuring 50 of the cathedrals 176 renowned stained-glass windows.

.: Twinkle Toes – Age 13 :.

Prayers and Heavenly Promises
Now in Premium UltraSoft! This unique book of powerful prayers and devotions, compiled by Joan Carroll Cruz, includes wonderful promises made by Our Lord or Our Lady, most of which were revealed to famous Saints, including: St. Faustina, St. Gertrude, and St. Catherine Laboure. Author Joan Carroll Cruz has carefully selected and compiled devotions to Our Lady, the Infant Jesus, Precious Blood, Sacred Heart, Divine Mercy, St. Michael, and more in one place so that your daily prayer can be more powerful and more fruitful than ever before. The promises set forth in this book show that God is eager to grant us many favors–if we will just pray!

Brigid and the Butter
Brigid wants to feed the hungry, but she is often hungry herself. When a beggar woman asks for the only food Brigid has – a dish of butter – she learns how to open her heart in generosity and love. This story of the first miracle of St. Brigid of Ireland will encourage children ages 5 to 8 to learn about this generous saint!

Even though this is a picture book written for children ages 5 to 8, St. Brigid is one of TT’s favorite saints and I know she will love adding this sweet picture book to her collection and reading it to her younger siblings. 

The Shadow of the Bear: A Fairy Tale Retold
When Bear, a mysterious young man, lands on Blanche and Rose Brier’s doorstep in New York City, the two sisters have conflicting opinions on whether or not he is dangerous. Even as Blanche learns to trust him, her fears that Bear’s friendship threatens their family prove terrifyingly true. A modern retelling of the classic Brothers Grimm fairytale.

I read many of Regina Doman’s books from her fairy tales retold series, years ago and have been hanging on to them to share with our children when they were “older”… I think our 13 year old will enjoy this story!

Our Lady’s Garden: A Coloring Book for Prayer and Meditation
Step away from the screen-from your television, your computer, your smartphone, your tablet-and take some time for creative mindfulness with a coloring book that will help slow your busy brain. Adults and young people alike will appreciate the opportunity to take time to meditate and pray, to share in the creativity of beloved Brazilian illustrator Veruscha Guerra, and to discover a new way of being with Our Lady in this very special garden.

.: Chiquita – Age 11 :.

The Costly Cookie Chronicles

Eleven-year old Clare wants to be a saint for Jesus, but there are a few things standing in her way: everything she says, does, and thinks. Well… not exactly, but almost. Clare finds surrendering her will to Jesus unbelievably hard, until a visiting priest shares an amazing secret during her church’s parish mission. In this second book by Julie Kelly, Clare discovers the tender love of Mary, the transforming power of meditating on the life of Jesus through the holy rosary, and the joy of contemplating with Mary the face of Christ. And in her delightfully candid way, Clare invites readers to walk the narrow road with her to Jesus through Mary.

Chiquita really enjoyed reading author Julie Kelly’s first book, Clare’s Costly Cookies a couple years ago. I think she will enjoy this second book as well. 

The Chestertons and the Golden Key

Summer vacation turns into an adventure for the three Nicholl sisters when Mr. Gilbert Chesterton and his wife come to town. Eleven-year-old Clare hopes to write a detective story. Eight-year-old Cece wants to be a champion roller-skater. And ten-year-old Joan just wants to learn how to play the locked piano in the family living room. But as they befriend the Chestertons, skating accidents, surprising friendships, puppet shows, and mystery solving ensue!

Saint Clare of Assisi: Runaway Rich Girl

St. Clare had everything a young girl could want: wealth, a loving family, and her faith. Clares father wanted her to marry a handsome young man, the son of a nobleman. She wanted to please her family, but her heart called her to a life of poverty, following St. Francis and eventually forming the Poor Clares! This vibrantly illustrated Shoujo-Manga style graphic novel tells her amazing story for children ages 9 to 12.

32 Days: A Story of Faith and Courage

How are the lives of a famous American bishop, Fulton J. Sheen, and an unknown eleven year old Chinese peasant girl intertwined? Discover why the child’s holiness and courage moved the famous TV and radio personality of the 1950’s to promote her religious devotion to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament throughout the world. An historical novel, the author puts flesh and bones on a real child and her love for Jesus. A very inspirational story that touches the heart and shows readers that even a child can be a hero.

.: Snuggles – Age 9 :.

A Young Catholic’s Daily Missal

The Young Catholic’s Daily Missal is designed to open up the spiritual treasures of the Traditional Mass for young Catholics from the time of their First Communion up through their early teen years. This missal conforms to the rubrics and norms of the 1962 Missale Romanum and includes the full Ordinary of the Mass; the Masses of the Sundays and Holidays in English with paraphrases of the Propers. For all the other days of the year there are explanations, printed in smaller type, of the Introit, Epistle and Gospel. These, along with the Common of Saints in bigger type, make this missal ideal for daily use. Finally, this missal contains morning and evening prayers; instructions on the meaning of the Mass; and an array of traditional devotions. An indispensable guide to prepare and teach young Catholic’s to use the full Daily Missal. Two ribbons, Flexible cover with Gold Foil Stamping. Illustrated throughout.

Will Wilder #2: The Lost Staff of Wonders 
Twelve-year-old Will Wilder is back to protect the town of Perilous Falls from another ancient evil—the fearsome demon, Amon. When the storied Staff of Moses—responsible for summoning the plagues of ancient Egypt—vanishes from the museum in Perilous Falls, Will Wilder is suspect number one. Desperate to prove his innocence and stop the thief from unleashing terrors upon the town of Perilous Falls, Will must use his supernatural gift to locate the beast—but it’s nowhere to be found. As the river runs with blood, sharp-toothed frogs surround his home, and clouds of swarming gnats choke the streets, Will must rely on his supernatural ability, everything he learned from his training, and help from his friends, siblings, and Great-Aunt Lucille to find the missing staff and unmask the hidden evil before time runs out for all of them.

I purchased the first book in the series from Sacred Heart Books and Gifts at the conference last summer for one of his older brothers and he just finished reading it too. I think he’s going to be excited to discover book #2 in his Easter Basket this year! 

The Shadow of His Wings: A Graphic Biography of Fr. Gereon Goldmann

Here is the astonishing true story of the harrowing experiences of a young German seminarian drafted into Hitler’s dreaded SS at the onset of World War II. Without betraying his Christian ideals, against all odds, and in the face of Evil, Gereon Goldmann was able to complete his priestly training, be ordained, and secretly minister to German Catholic soldiers and innocent civilian victims caught up in the horrors of war. How it all came to pass will astound you. 
Father Goldmann tells of his own incredible experiences of the trials of war, his many escapes from almost certain death, and the diabolical persecution that he and his fellow Catholic soldiers encountered on account of their faith. What emerges is an extraordinary witness to the workings of Divine Providence and the undying power of love, prayer, faith, and sacrifice.

One of my personal favorite books, which my older boys have loved as well, is The Shadow of His Wings: The True Story of Fr. Gereon Goldmann, OFM. I’m looking forward to introducing our nine year old to this inspiring story with this new graphic biography. 

Wind In the Willows
For more than a century, The Wind in the Willows and its endearing protagonists–Mole, Mr. Toad, Badger, and Ratty–have enchanted children of all ages. Whether the four friends are setting forth on an exciting adventure, engaging in a comic caper, or simply relaxing by the River Thames, their stories are among the most charming in all English literature. This keepsake edition of Kenneth Grahame’s beloved novel features gorgeous art throughout, making it a must-have for every child’s library.

Another beautiful book illustrated by Robert Ingpen!

.: Rose – Age 7 :.

Flowers for Jesus: A Story of Thérèse of Lisieux as a Young Girl (Hardcover edition also available)
Little Thérèse Martin could be a very stubborn young girl. All too often, if someone wanted her to say “yes,” she wanted to say “no”! But then, as she is preparing for her First Communion, Thérèse discovers a way to turn her everyday trials and tribulations into something beautiful for Jesus. Join Thérèse (and her family) as she learns to “gather roses from amid thorns.” With simple storytelling and vibrant watercolors, Flowers for Jesus introduces children to a saint they can relate to: the young Thérèse of Lisieux, before she became known the world over as a spiritual master…

Mary and the Little Shepherds of Fatima
Celebrate the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Fatima with this illustrated true story designed for children ages 5 to 8. Hear about the courage and resilience of Francisco, Jacinta, and Lucinda when everyone, including their parents, doubted the existence of the heavenly visions. See how their unwavering faith and confidence helped thousands witness Our Lady’s Miracle of the Sun!

In addition to this new release from Pauline Books, we’ll be adding to our collection for the upcoming 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Fatima, I also have a couple OOP books I purchased over the past year stashed in my closet to pull out in May! 

Rapunzel: Based on the Original Story by the Brothers Grimm
Beautiful Rapunzel is locked away in a tall, tall tower, visited only by the little creatures of the forest and the witch who has imprisoned her. Until one day a handsome prince, passing by on his horse, is transfixed by the magical sound of Rapunzel singing to her animals friends and knows he must reach her… Can true love transform Rapunzel’s life forever?

From iridescent blue swallowtails and brilliant orange monarchs to the worlds tiniest butterfly (Western Pygmy Blue) and the largest (Queen Alexandra’s Birdwing), an incredible variety of butterflies are celebrated here in all of their beauty and wonder.
I’ve started collecting the whole series which includes: An Egg is Quiet, A Seed Is Sleepy,  A Nest Is Noisy, A Rock Is Lively, and A Beetle Is Shy

.: Bud – Age 5 :.

Simon of Cyrene and the Legend of the Easter Egg

Brand new release from Pauline Books & Media! I’m still waiting for this one to arrive and looking forward to seeing it in person.  

On his way to market to sell eggs, Simon the Cyrene is stopped by Roman soldiers and ordered to help Jesus carry his cross to Calvary. Three days later, Simon rejoices when he sees that not only has Jesus risen from the dead but his eggs have been transformed into a colorful new gift from Jesusthe first Easter eggs! 

For children ages 4 to 7.

Nikola and the Monk

On the mountain lives an old monk, working out his salvation in prayer and seclusion. He is just the one to show Nikola the holiness in each moment.

I love the books written by Dessi Jackson, especially the gorgeous illustrations by Kimberlee’s talented daughter, Lydia Grace. 
We already have and enjoy Roses in the Snow: A Tale of Saint Elizabeth of Hungary and Saint Felix and the Spider. I’m really excited to read Nikola and the Monk to our little ones and add it to our collection. 

Adventures in Brambly Hedge
Step into the miniature world of Brambly Hedge in this exquisite slipcase containing four classic picture books! The mice of Brambly Hedge have many adventures but they always have time for fun too. All through the year, they mark the seasons with feasts and festivities and, of course, the mice never miss an opportunity to meet and celebrate. This beautifully designed slipcase contains four classic stories following their adventures throughout the year.

Wonders of Nature

“Isn’t it a wonder that out in the pond, smooth wiggly tadpoles lose their tails and grow legs, and turn into frogs? And that fuzzy caterpillars weave silken cocoons around themselves and go to sleep, then wake up as pretty moths or butterflies?”

It’s a rare nonfiction book that’s also a simple, beautiful poem. In this gorgeous Little Golden Book from 1957, Eloise Wilkin’s stunning and realistic artwork is accompanied by gentle text that brings an awe of nature to the youngest readers.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

For YOU:

In addition to all the wonderful new books our children will receive this Easter, I have over $200 worth of books to give away to my visitors here at Shower of Roses! Thank you to Sacred Heart Books and Gifts, Pauline Books & Media, Peanut Butter and Grace, Catholic Child, and illustrator Kellie Ryan for sponsoring these prizes!

There will be one winner for each of the following 7 prizes:

Prize #1: Will Wilder: The Relic of Perilous FallsWill Wilder, #2: The Lost Staff of Wonders and Page-A-Day Children’s Bible sponsored by Sacred Heart Books and Gifts (combined value $55.93)


Prize #2: Set of Three Coloring Books: Scriptures Illuminated, Windows into Christ, and Our Lady’s Garden 
sponsored by Pauline Books & Media (combined value $47.85)


Prize #3: Little Flower Book Bundle: The Little Flower, Little Lessons from St. Therese of Lisieux, and Flowers for Jesus 

sponsored by Peanut Butter & Grace (combined value $33.97)


Prize #4: Molly McBride and the Purple Habit and Molly McBride and the Plaid Jumper sponsored by Peanut Butter & Grace (combined value $24.99)


Prize #5: Saint Thomas Aquinas and The Caterpillar That Came to Church sponsored by Catholic Child (combined value $22.90)

Prize #6: Simon of Cyrene and the Legend of the Easter Egg
sponsored by Pauline Books & Media (value $12.95)


sponsored by Kellie Ryan, Illustrator  (value $11.95)
Please enter the giveaway using the Rafflecopter box below:

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Prayer of Mothers

Father in heaven, grant me the grace to appreciate the dignity which you have conferred on me. Let me realize that not even the Angels have been blessed with such a privilege—to share in your creative miracle and bring new Saints to heaven. Make me a good mother to all my children after the example of Mary, the Mother of your Son. Through the intercession of Jesus and Mary I ask your continued blessings on my family. Let us all be dedicated to your service on earth and attain the eternal happiness of your kingdom in heaven. Amen.

Our Family

Sean & Jessica, Captain-23, Ranger-22, Twinkle Toes-20, Chiquita-19, Snuggles-16, Rose-14, Bud-12, Grace-6 and Joy-4 (blog nicknames)

A Little About Me

Hi! I'm Jessica, a Roman Catholic wife and home educating mother to our nine children. I was home educated myself, along with my eleven younger siblings. I have a special devotion to St. Therese, through whom I have been given much help and many blessings--the beautiful "Shower of Roses" that she has sent my way! Here I will record a few of the blessings I treasure. Please remember that what you see here is just a little glimpse at our lives, so please say a prayer for us, as we continue to strive for holiness.

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