We have read the other 2 books (Jotham and Bartholomew) over the past 2 advent seasons, and really, really enjoyed them both. My only grudge with this book is that it brings in a little too much of the "boys are sissies and girls must be tomboys to get any respect and will always save the day" mentality that is far too common in our culture. But, it's subtle, so I wouldn't NOT recommend it - it's a fun and engaging story like the others. Just an element I didn't notice in the other books, and wished I'd been aware of before we started this one. All of the books have been delightful for our family and I would recommend them to anyone looking for a fun way to celebrate and observe advent with their children.
We started with Tabitha's Travels several years ago and now have all 3 books. We alternate each year and are very eager at the end of each chapter to find out what happens next. My son is now 13 and he is still asking to read these books every advent season.
Our family absolutely loved Jotham's Journey and Bartholomew's Passage and have recommended them to many people. We were very excited to pick up Tabitha's Travels, especially since we have several girls. The Christmas message is vividly displayed through Tabitha's experiences as she meets Jotham and then travels with her father to try to find Jotham after they realize that the caravan with which they sent the boy has placed him in terrible danger.
From the beginning Tabitha resents being a girl who isn't allowed to do all that the boys are doing. She is very smart and has many good ideas, but several times she is 'the only one can can solve a problem', making her a heroine, even though she disobeys in the process. Several times in the story, she "comes to the rescue".
Whereas in Jotham's Journey, Jotham's disobedience gets him into trouble; Tabitha disobeys but because it works out well, the disobedience is overlooked. Early on she thinks how boys would complain in her situation, but she doesn't because girls have to learn not to complain.
Tabitha's desire to be treated like a boy was so strong that it overwhelmed other parts of the story for us. Not until she meets Zechariah and he gives her wonderful words of wisdom is this issue addressed properly in the book.
Still a good story, but definitely not at the level of Jotham's Journey or even Bartholomew's Passage.