Real Richmond Review: The Santa Beacon, Richmond’s Newest Children’s Book

Of all the gifts we love to see under the tree, books are the most treasured. No batteries required and not clunky or awkward to find space for, the pages of a book while reading with a child become magical memories of the holiday itself.

This year, we’re lucky to review a book by one of Richmond’s very own dads and orthodontists–who knew that a

Dr. Graham Gardner, left, is more than an orthodontist–he’s got a lot up his creative sleeve!

guy who loved smiles would want to create some of his own in the pages of The Santa Beacon? Dr. Graham Gardner of Gardner Grins shared the concept for his book with me at his home in Richmond. “It’s really something I’ve wanted to create for a long time. We love reading with our kids and I knew this concept–designed around my own daughter Ava–would be one that would resonate with families everywhere.”

The Santa Beacon, written by Gardner and brightly illustrated by Nancy LeBlanc, is the story of little Ava who is spending her first Christmas away from home with her “Grandmar” and “Pop-pop” and cousins. Ava worries that Santa won’t be able to find her, especially since she hadn’t told him she wouldn’t be at home this year on Christmas Day.

When Ava imagines her brothers waking up without gifts on Christmas Day she has to tell them, and soon her mom and dad, grandparents, and wise uncles were brought into the mix. Little Ava even tries to make her own gifts for her brothers so they won’t be disappointed if Santa doesn’t show up. In the end, Ava learns the true meaning of the season from a very special “guest.” (Come on now, we can’t give it all away!)

The sweet ornament that comes with the book

Even though in full disclosure, Dr. Gardner is an advertiser of this site, we’ll be buying copies of this book for friends this holiday season, because complete with a heart ornament for the recipient, the lessons in his book are timeless and ones that will follow the reader, home and away this season.

Our favorite part: the dedication. Gotta love it!

Please comment below as to who you’d like to give The Santa Beacon to and we’ll choose two winners at random to receive a copy of this beautiful hardcover book, valued at $19.95. We’ll pick two winners by 12/10/12! This book was published by Belle Isle Books. Order your copy of The Santa Beacon here; $17.95 through 11/15/12, $19.99 thereafter.

Gardner Grins is an advertiser of