Saturday, May 21, 2016

My Big Book of Bible Heroes for Kids: Stories of 50 Weird, Wild, Wonderful People from God's Word

My Big Book of Bible Heroes for Kids: Stories of 50 Weird, Wild, Wonderful People from God’s Word by Glenn Hascall is filled with, as the title says, stories of 50 "weird, wild, wonderful people" from the Bible. Hascall writes about well-known Bible heroes such as Noah, Abraham, Joshua and John the Baptist. He also includes stories about lesser-known characters like Shiphrah and Jochebed (Yes, those are real Bible names!).

The author relates an incident that illustrates a special heroic trait of each Biblical character mentioned. Each story is followed by a set of questions called "Learning from a hero." The questions are designed to create discussion about each story so the reader can learn from what the hero did.

Full-color Illustrations by Amit Tayal highlight every story title page, providing life-like representations of the people mentioned.

What I Like: This is a great selection of stories. I especially appreciated that the author included some stories about women from the Bible.

Each story includes a page with the person's name and a Bible reference for the story. It also includes the person's "Heroic Quality." Some of these qualities are endurance, compassion, and respect. I like the idea that being a hero doesn't mean you have to have a "super" power, you just need an "Heroic Quality."

What I Dislike: Unfortunately, the writing style is rather boring. While the author chose good Bible characters to write about, he writes too much with the passive tense, instead of using action verbs. For instance, consider these two sentences: "Samson was the strongest man anyone had ever seen. When he was born, he was dedicated to God." The word "was" is used three times in just these two short sentences. That's okay, but I think it would have been better written like this: "Samson was the strongest man anyone had ever seen. After his birth, his mother dedicated his life to God." What do you think?

Overall Rating: Very good.

Age Appeal: 7-10.

Publisher Info: Shiloh Kidz, 2015; ISBN: 9781634093156; Paperback, 158 pages, $14.99.

Special Info: Read our reviews of other books by Glenn Hascall.



Kathy Cassel said...

Active voice and vivid verbs keep kids reading.

Christine M. Irvin said...

Yes, I agree. Passive voice and verbs should be used as little as possible (in my humble opinion)!