Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A Wish and A Prayer

When Jason’s pet parakeet flies away, he wishes on fountain pennies, birthday candles, stars, and clocks to get her back. Yet no matter how faithful his wishes, his pet still fails to return. Then a comment by his mother makes Jason think about the difference between a wish and a prayer. Following a blackout caused by a thunderstorm, Jason comes to understand that fountains, candles, stars, and clocks can’t hear wishes, nor do they hold any power to help. But God always hears prayers AND has the power to answer them. Once Jason realizes this, he prays about his lost pet. The next morning, she returns.

A Wish and a Prayer, written by Beth Bence Reinke and illustrated by Ginger Nielson, highlights the idea that God created all things (even the things we mistakenly “wish” on) and He alone has the power to hear and answer our deepest desires. The sweet and brightly-colored illustrations convey a sense of motion and expression. Most pages have three to five lines of text, although some have more.

What I Like: The concept of prayer is solid and presented in a friendly manner that will make sense to kids. I like how the book focuses on the importance and power of prayer in our everyday lives. I also appreciated how the mother offered guidance to Jason, but he discovered the truth for himself. To me, the story reads very much like a Sunday School lesson, and would make a good addition to a church library.

What I Dislike: While the idea is good, it leaves the impression that all we have to do is pray and, poof, our prayers are answered just the way we want. I would have liked the story to address the idea that NO and WAIT are also answers and that even though God has the power to give us our every wish, that doesn’t mean he will.

Overall Rating: Good

Age Appeal: 4-8 years

Publisher Info: 4RV Publishing LLC, 2010; ISBN:978-0982642313; Paperback, 32 PGS., $17.99

This book is not yet available at Christianbook.com.
Buy it at Amazon.com for $12.23.

Special Info: Visit this author's website. Visit this illustrator's website.

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Vivian Zabel said...

A great review. The comment that NO and WAIT should have been included may be valid, but picture books have a limited number of words. Perhaps that concept can be covered in another book. Hmmm, Beth?

Beth Reinke said...

Thank you so much for this lovely review, Lori. I agree that the book would work well in Sunday school classes and hope churches will utilize it.

This blog is a wonderful resource for parents. Thanks to all the moms who diligently review books to help parents make good choices for their kids.


Carol said...

Thanks for reviewing Beth's book. I look forward to sharing the story with the young children in my life.

TerryLynnJohnson said...

What a great review! I can't wait to read this book. I've just found your site and looking over other reviews also. Wonderful.

Kit said...

Nice review, Looks like a good one. Love the cover illustration by Ginger also.
Kit Grady

Lori Calabrese said...

I really enjoyed A Wish and a Prayer and can't say enough positive things about it. It sends such a great underlying message to kids about something most of America is shying away from these days.

Thanks for sharing.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

It is a beautiful story that I enjoyed reading. The parents could discuss with their children that God answers prayers in a way that is best for us, or something similar.

Cheryl said...

What a nice review. I enjoyed this book as well.