Tuesday, April 8, 2008

The Big Picture Story Bible

Have your children ever begged for more Bible stories instead of food? Have you ever read 160 pages to attentive toddlers in one sitting? And then have them ask for more? I certainly hadn't -- until I got this book.

The Big Picture Story Bible is unlike any other Bible story book I've seen. Rather than telling the familiar stories in the familiar patterns, this book instills in children a unified theme through both the Old and New Testaments. Author David Helm makes the common thread clear by emphasizing in each chapter how these true stories show God's love for the world and the fulfillment of His promises.

This is a big story in a big book. It measures about 10" square and contains 456 pages. Broken into 26 manageable chapters, the book begins with creation (Genesis) and ends with the Apostle Paul's vision of the new heavens and new earth (Revelation). Gail Schoonmaker serves as illustrator. She fills the book with big pictures, both colorful and unique.

What I Like: I love how my kids can't get enough of this book! We read 9 chapters (156 pages) yesterday before school, and they cried when I said it was time to stop. The chapter breaks offer easy "intermissions". The theme is clear! The text is perfectly toddler and preschooler friendly. I appreciate the use of repetition and the insistence on truth.

What I Dislike: Some have complained that not all the best-known Bible stories are included; other stories do not provide all the details. This is not a Bible where you can look up favorite stories, but this is key to the point of the book: the Bible is more than just a collection of great stories; it is one big story consisting of several parts. Often children fail to see the connection between all the stories; they miss how God and His love for us strings the stories together to make sense of it all.

Overall Rating: Excellent.

Age appeal: 4-8, but my 2 year-old LOVES it!

Publisher Info: Crossway Books, 2004; ISBN: 1581342772; Hardback$22.99

Buy it Now at Christianbook.com for $16.99!
Or Buy it at Amazon.com for $15.63.

1 comment:

Kristina said...

I just want to second Tanya's review of this book. I agree with her 100%. This is a great way for kids to get the "big picture" of what the Bible is about, with preschool and gradeschool friendly text and lovely illustrations.