Best-selling Australian Children’s author releases free Christmas book

The celebrated author of the EJ12 Girl Hero and EJ Spy School series and Fairy Tales for Feisty Girls and Bold Tales for Brave-Hearted Boys, is this November releasing a new Christmas title, The Who, What, Why, How of Christmas. Working in partnership with Bible Society Australia, Susannah McFarlane asks some key questions about the Christmas story and explores Jesus’ birth through the eyes of four fictional characters.

The Who, What, Why, How of Christmas follows the story of Josh, Tom, Grace and Abby as they ask tricky questions familiar to all parents about the meaning of Christmas. McFarlane takes an unconventional approach, by re-telling the story of Creation and The Fall before introducing Mary, the angels and shepherds. It is hoped the book will provide children with a deeper understanding of the reason why Jesus came to earth and what it means for their lives.

McFarlane says, “Having only become a Christian three and a half years ago, I am realising in our post-Christian society, children of Gen X and Gen Y families may never have heard or asked why there was such excitement about the birth of Jesus. This book has been a tremendous privilege to work on. I hope that it inspires young readers to ask questions and explore the Christmas story in a way that will harness their curiosity and create lots of interaction!”

McFarlane works on both sides of the industry having been a leading publisher of children’s fiction for many years and now also a celebrated author, with sales of over one million copies in Australia. The Who, What, Why, How of Christmas draws on her own faith journey as inspiration.

Rev Melissa Lipsett from Bible Society Australia says, “It has been a delight to work with Susannah on this wonderful book. The story of God becoming human is not a fairy tale. It is the very heart of the Christian gospel of grace and love, and its message is for children and adults. Susannah’s wonderful characters invite readers to explore this ultimate love story through their own questioning. We hope some parents will even seek out the original telling of Jesus’ birth in the Bible.”

Bible Society Australia is offering The Who, What, Why, How of Christmas free to individuals and churches who register online. The church offer went live on October 1st and the individual offer begins on November 1st.

Register at: biblesociety.org.au/whychristmas

For more information, interviews or comment please contact [email protected]

About Bible Society Australia

Bible Society Australia champions the Bible to share the love of Jesus. We look for every possible way to introduce people to the Bible, to see themselves as God sees them, and to have their lives changed by a loving God. Our work is possible through the support of our generous donors who enable us to support the translation, production and distribution of Bibles, as well as subsidise their cost across the world. We also help local communities engage with the Bible and we advocate for the good book in public places, like schools, boardrooms, universities and the media.

About Susannah McFarlane

Susannah McFarlane is best known as the author, creator and publisher of some of Australia’s most successful children’s book series, but she has also written successful non-fiction for adults including her recently released memoir Heartlines: The Year I Met My Other Mother (Penguin-Random House) which she co-wrote with her birth mother Robin Leuba. She is the creator and writer of the awarding-winning EJ12 Girl Hero and EJ Spy School series (Scholastic) , the creator and co-author of the hugely popular series for boys, Boy vs Beast and D-Bot Squad and most recently, the author of Fairy Tales for Feisty Girls and Bold Tales for Brave-Hearted Boys (Allen & Unwin).

Susannah was previously co-owner and Managing Director of Hardie Grant Egmont and the managing director of Egmont Books UK, the vice-president of the Egmont Group and a Board Director of the Australian Publishers’ Association.