Easter Treat: Easter Basket Book Ideas and Author Interview!

In honor of Holy Week, we have a special guest! I am delighted to welcome back bestselling children's book author Laura Sassi, who just released a new Easter treasure for little ones! I asked her some questions so that we could get a sneak peak into her newest book, Bunny Finds Easter. I pray her words enrich your Easter holiday, no matter the ages of your children. Plus, at the end of the interview you will find other Easter basket book ideas to help you ground the holiday in its true meaning—happy reading!

Welcome, Laura. Can you tell us: Why did you write your newest book, Bunny Finds Easter?

As a young child I was confused about what we were celebrating at Easter. I loved coloring Easter eggs and hunting for jelly beans, but it wasn’t until I was a tween that I made the connection that Easter is when we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection. Inspired by that memory, I decided to write a board book for preschoolers and toddlers that would celebrate those fun Easter traditions and, at the same time, serve as an introduction to the real gift of Easter—Jesus!

In my book, Bunny is on a quest to find out if Easter is all about chocolate eggs and jelly beans, or if it might just be about a little bit more? As the story unfolds, Bunny encounters many of the fun traditions surrounding Easter, including going on an egg hunt, but it’s not until she arrives at church and they sing an Easter song that she realizes JESUS is the reason we celebrate Easter.

Why does your book begin with a question—is that intentional?

I wanted to begin BUNNY FINDS EASTER with a question because kids love asking questions! I also wanted them to see, in a fun way, that asking questions is a good way to find things out. Thankfully, we have a wonderful God who can withstand any question we might bring him. Indeed, God is always ready to answer. And how does he answer? Through his rich and in-depth word—the Bible. He also uses his followers, us, to point each other and others in God’s direction.

Some questions are tougher to answer than others as parents! I noticed one question in your book reads, "Who died to take our sins away? And rose again on Easter day?" How do you explain the cross to children who are curious?

My approach with little ones who are curious about the cross is to set it in the bigger context of God’s love for us. We don’t want to frighten children, but at the same time, we don’t want to minimize the amazing gift of Jesus’ sacrifice. Through Jesus' death on the cross, he paid the penalty for humanity’s sinfulness once and for all as God’s son, perfect and without sin. And death was not the end of the story! On Easter morning He rose again and we will too—in eternity with God in heaven! As Christians, our hearts overflow with gratitude for this lavish outpouring love bestowed on us. Our response is to believe, accept, and share the good news with others.

I like to tie everything back to God’s word, which I hope plants a pattern in their hearts to seek truth there. Here are two passages that speak to Jesus’ redemptive love at Easter in a way that kid’s can grasp: John 3:16 (this is a good one to memorize) and Matthew 20:17–19 (Jesus predicts his own mission on the cross).

Do you have advice for parents who are willing to tackle tough questions in general?

Think big picture. Have some applicable passages of scripture at the ready so that you can point your little ones directly to God’s word as you work together to tackle tough questions. This, of course, will require that we spend time with God ourselves, asking questions, delving into scripture, and praying for God’s wisdom and light as we navigate through our days and nurture our children to know God.

What are you most looking forward to doing this Easter with your family?

I’m looking forward to going to church together, as a family, and gathering with others. Our church is having a very special service this year under a big tent. And my prayer is that it serves as a revival tent—that it will be just the beginning for our community. And, like Bunny in the story who hears the Easter news when rising to sing, I can’t wait to stand and sing together of the joy we have in Jesus, our risen Lord! 

Thank you, Laura! And thank you to the Christian publisher Zonderkidz for bringing Laura's book to life. For more Easter basket book ideas, check out these titles. Zonderkidz let me preview them for free, and they're adorable!

How High is Heaven? By Linsey Davis—Linsey has been on my show
Easter Egg Board Books, 3 pack, Illustrated by Emily Emerson—my toddler went right for these!
Snuggle Time Easter Stories and 'Twas the Morning of Easter by Glenys Nellist—I love the Snuggle Time series for little ones! Glenys is no stranger to my blog!
The Tiny Truths Bible for Little Ones by Joanna Rivard and Tim Penner—This board book Bible has inclusive illustrations, making the Gospel story approachable for all, since children learn and connect through images.

Looking for more inspiration? Check out my Easter devotion, Easter prayer or Easter dinner prayer, or stayed tuned to Redbud Writers Guild's Facebook page on Saturday, where I will share an Easter video!


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