One of the nice things about blogging is the chance we get to help support talented home grown Irish businesses of which there are many, by occasionally getting to review their work. This week the postman brought just such a package for Mini and me to review. It’s published by Digital Scribe and is of a festive nature so Grinches may want to avert their eyes!
It’s a personalised book detailing a Christmas Eve adventure featuring Mini. Regular readers will know of my fondness for personalised items be they mugs or books. Having a traditionally spelled Irish name meant there was little option for gifts of a personalised nature for me growing up. I know, I know, break out the world’s smallest violin! It’s a whole different story these days, however, and you can even find Irish names on products in high street stores.
The illustrations in the book are simple but engaging for little ones and Mini was instantly drawn to them. The book starts, like a lot of great children’s reads with the fall of darkness and a mysterious sound which draws your child out of their bed and up on the roof. Santa is missing but Finbar the Irish elf is here to make sure he is found, with a little help from your child! I love stories that take place at night where there’s magic in the air and Mini was tickled pink by a tale that put her on the roof of the house. What follows then is a sweet trip around Ireland in search of Santa that highlights some of the country’s most famous landmarks including the Giant’s Causeway, the Burren and the Cliffs of Moher.
What’s on the nice list about this book is that not only is Mini’s name mentioned throughout the story,her sister and her friend also feature. Top marks for accuracy of spelling-all fadas are in the correct position and they even have Mini Mini’s umlaut on display!
The story itself is charming and I like the way it weaves in well known places around Ireland. There is a quick nod to the roots of Christmas with the mention of baby Jesus’ impending arrival in the crib. I think any good Christmas story should include something about the origins of the holiday. Even though we are not a religious household,we’ll still be explaining the real meaning of Christmas to the girls when they get older. It’s not all about toys and Santa!
Now for the naughty list-the book is not of particularly good quality material and did not withstand the Mini test-she had the middle pages ripped out within the first few hours. It has the feel and look of a magazine, rather than a book and is definitely not something that will stand the test of time with busy little fingers about!The €15.99 plus P&P is a hard one to justify. I feel a price in and around the ten euro mark would be a lot more suitable.
For me the likelihood of buying this book as a gift hinges on whether you value style over substance. It’s true you will get a lovely,unique story featuring your child,just not one that will last very long!
The book may be ordered from the Digital Scribe website.
Disclaimer-I was provided a copy of this book for free for review purposes. All opinions remain my own honest ones.