"Annika's Secret Wish"

HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW

Book: Annika’s Secret Wish

Author: Beverly Lewis

Illustrator: Pamela Querin

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers, 2000

ISBN-13: 9780764221811

ISBN-10: 0764221817

Language level: 1 (nothing objectionable)

Reading level: Acceptable for all ages

Rating: 4 stars (GOOD)

Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker

For more information e-mail homeschoolbookreview@gmail.com

Lewis, Beverly. Annika’s Secret Wish (published in 2000 by Bethany House Publishers, 11400 Hampshire Ave S., Bloomington, MN 55438). This is a book about a Swedish family who practices the tradition of putting an almond in their rice pudding at Christmas so that whoever finds it can make a wish. Obviously, there are references to Christmas and even observing it as the birthday of Christ, so if you prefer not to read such books you would want to avoid this one. Of course, we do not celebrate Christmas as the birth of Christ, but many in the religious world do, so we do not necessarily avoid books that mention it. Rather, when reading such books, we simply emphasize what the Bible actually says. In this book, there are references to believing in God and prayer; in fact, the statement is made that only God can “grant wishes,” although it still is fun to make a wish after finding the almond. If Annika finds the almond in her pudding, she plans to wish for a new pony. But her little brother Edward is sick and walks on crutches. He becomes ill while they are eating their pudding, and when Annika finds the almond in hers, she secretly trades dessert with Edward so that he will find it instead. This is a wonderful illustration of sacrificing one’s own wishes for the benefit of another in need.

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