Thursday, February 15, 2007

Tell Me About Faith

From the series "Big Topics for Little Kids" comes Tell Me About Faith. Written and illustrated by Joel Anderson, this hardback book tackles the difficult issue of faith. Through tangible illustrations, the author explains faith is believing in something you can't see and "knowing it's true even if you can't prove it." The book follows a little girl whose military father is far away at war. Even though she can't remember her daddy, she knows he exists and he loves her very much. He sends her letters and promises he will be home soon. To further the illustration of faith, the father sends his daughter a package with some flower bulbs. They don't look like much, but he assures her they will be beautiful in the spring if she plants them in the ground. She believes what her father says and obeys, planting the bulbs in the ground. Months later, after the snow of winter has come and gone, flowers are blooming in the yard and her daddy has come home. The illustrations are similar to clip-art and paper piecing. Many of the pictures are framed and some are done in silhouette. As an added feature, the back of the book contains questions and answers to prompt further discussion between child and parent. There is even an activity to help children understand the concept of faith.

What I Like: The concept is wonderful! I wish more children's books would tackle the fundamental issues of our faith. The author does a good job paralleling what children see and understand here on earth to the more difficult truths of faith. I feel the use of a daddy at war is very appropriate for children these days. It truly puts flesh on an intangible concept. The backmatter is wonderful! It definitely encourages deeper understanding.

What I Dislike: While the author uses Scripture (Hebrews 11:1 and 2 Corinthians 5:6-7) as bookends to his text, he does not mention God anywhere in the story. Adults will fully understand the connection between the story and faith in God, but I feel it's a jump for kids. I would like to see the parallel prounounced clearly in the story. The illustrations are sub-par. They are very one-dimensional and too blended; they seem almost hazy and blurry. He uses a lot of pastels.

Overall Rating: Good. Best in the series.

Age Appeal: 5-8

Publisher Info: Tommy Nelson, 2005; ISBN: 1400306159; Hardback; $9.99

Buy it Now at for $4.99

Special Info: This book is very appropriate for military families.

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