Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Big Bible Storybook

The Big Bible Storybook, edited by Maggie Barfield, includes 188 Bible stories. Using dialog and first-person retellings, the text naturally encourages young children and adults to share quality time learning about biblical characters and events.

The stories, each just one or two pages long, are divided into chapters based on the main characters or theme. For example, the book begins with "God the Maker", a chapter that includes 10 stories about creation, the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve and the fall of mankind. The other chapter divisions are:
  • Noah (3 stories)
  • Abraham and Isaac (4 stories)
  • Jacob and Joseph (7 stories)
  • Moses and Joshua (10 stories)
  • Gideon and Deborah (3 stories)
  • Ruth and Samuel (5 stories)
  • David and Solomon (11 stories)
  • Elijah and Elisha (8 stories)
  • Hezekiah and Josiah (5 stories)
  • Jeremiah and Ezekiel (6 stories)
  • Daniel and Esther (6 stories)
  • Jonah (2 stories)
  • Nehemiah (5 stories)
  • Jesus is born (8 stories)
  • Meeting Jesus (19 stories)
  • Stories of Jesus (12 stories)
  • Jesus is amazing (14 stories)
  • Jesus, the best friend (10 stories)
  • Jesus is alive (17 stories)
  • Friends of Jesus (8 stories)
  • Paul's adventures (13 stories)
  • With God, for always (2 stories)
Aside from the interactive nature and child-friendly text, the book's great appeal comes in the illustrations. Rather than drawings, this book features colorful photographs of plush characters in still settings. The soft fabrics and faces are warm and inviting. It's exactly what children this age want to see.

A table of contents at the front and the index at the back aid readers in finding specific stories or passages quickly.

What I Like: The format is perfect for young children. The stories are just the right length for toddlers and preschoolers, but the chapters are cohesive enough and longer, which is perfect for lower-grade children! My kids LOVE this book! The photographs and the included dialog make the book a perfect catalyst for role play. My kids (ages 5 and 6) will have me read story after story while they act them out, even pulling Daddy and Grandma into the scenes. Of course, I appreciate the inclusion of Bible references with each story. This book spends a good deal of time telling the stories of the prophets. It's wonderful, something that not many children's books do.

What I Dislike: The binding could be stronger. My copy hasn't broken or fallen apart ... yet. I see warning signs and I am concerned about its lifespan, especially with the wear and tear children put on these books. My kids are 5 and 6; I'm sure the book would not have lasted this long if they were younger.

Overall Rating:

Age Appeal:
4-8, though I think children as young as 2 would enjoy it.

Publisher Info:
Candle Books, 2009; ISBN: 0825474248; Hardback; 256 pages; $18.99

Buy it Now at for $13.99!

OR Buy it at for $14.24.

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Annette W. said...

Thank you for a great review! I am always on the lookout for an excellent children's Bible (which is one of the reasons I reviewed ours a bit back).

Tanya said...

You're very welcome! You may be interested our reviews of other children's Bibles, too. There are some excellent choices available.