Book Reviews

What do parents say?

"Precious book! It warms the heart. I'm buying it to give as Christmas gifts this year. I'm so happy to have found a book with an inspiring message and beautiful illustrations that the whole family can enjoy from year to year."

-Amazon customer, Tennessee

"Beautifully written journey. My son loved it!"

-Leigh, New York

"A lovely message and a perfect Christmas gift. I'm giving it to the kids a little before Christmas, so they'll have a brand new bedtime story leading up the big day. Hoping it becomes an annual tradition!"

MB, Alabama

"Amazing book and a new classic for kids. Our family found inspiration in this book!"

-David, Alabama

"Inspiring message with beautiful illustrations. A great book for the whole family to share together! I love it!"

-Amazon customer

"Great book for the family to enjoy and share. Christmas is a time for sharing and this story conveys that message in a warm and caring tone."

-Amazon customer

An Expert's Review

The Christmas Ant, written by Jack L. Mauldin and illustrated by JanOvation, captures the magic of Christmas, from heartwarming acts of giving and receiving to magical journeys deep into an ant castle, where a Queen rules, soldiers guard, and ants prepare for the surprise that is to come. This delightfully illustrated children’s book spins a sweet tale of simple acts of kindness, of never giving up, and looking beyond yourself. Intertwining great character traits and heroic actions into a mystical story, The Christmas Ant sparks imagination and is expected to create many memorable nights cuddling together as parents and children explore the world of Scout, the little unimportant ant who is searching for a gift for his Queen. Jack L. Mauldin, the author, found inspiration for the book from a solitary ant wandering across the counter in his kitchen while baking Christmas cookies. Jack imagined the scout ant searching for something to give its Queen, and that became the basis for his story. Jack says it was surprising to his entire family when he shared the fully developed story of Scout, the ant, along with his serious plans to publish a children’s book. They were shocked largely because he is a physician who has lectured medical students for forty years and run a busy practice as a gastroenterologist in Birmingham, AL since 1976. Dr. Jack Mauldin has been secretly entertaining the budding talent for writing children’s books for years. He explains, “I write a lot of stories in my mind but rarely put them down on paper. Once in a while, I have a muse and it will come to me as a whole story. The Christmas Ant came that way; it just fell out and I embellished it.” Dr. Mauldin says that he intentionally focused on writing a story that has life-lessons and interests children in reading. “We often watch our grand kids exclaim, ‘Oh look it’s a bug!’ when they see an ant, so I used that enthusiasm for bugs as a way to tell the universal story of working hard and never giving up on a juvenile level.” The Christmas Ant is ideal for developing literacy with its rich descriptions and the bright, colorful, detailed illustrations. Jack was amazed to discover the artistic abilities of JanOvation (Jana Nielsen) because she was able to illustrate exactly the images Jack had envisioned as he wrote the story, “You can go in my kitchen and see that Jana’s picture of the kitchen sink and the little boy captures it all. Most of what came out in the illustrations is exactly how our house looks or what I imagined.” Jana says, “Jack is an amazing person to work with. His descriptive writing made the book fun to illustrate and he has a wonderful personality. Jack would say things like, ‘Can you give Billy a haircut? It’s looking a little long in back.” One of the most fascinating illustrations in the book is the cross-section of the ant castle on the inside. Jack says, “Kids are fascinated by ants. They get ant farms to watch and study the ants in their hills working.” Jana’s ant castle is sure to captivate children’s imagination and prepare them for the next books in the series. Dr. Jack Mauldin assures us this is just the beginning of Scout’s journeys. More books on this honorable ant are soon to be written and illustrated, with many more life-lessons to discover. Written by Melanie Davis founder of Triumph Press Bedtime Stories

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