Wednesday, September 8, 2010

If You Give a Boy a Bible/If You Give a Girl a Bible

Loosely patterned after the mainstream classic If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, these two books written and illustrated by Andy Holmes explore the funny and poignant possibilities that may follow the gift of a Bible.

The snowball effect begins with the gift, then progresses to reading the Bible, imitating the stories, learning the implied faith lessons and ultimately sharing all of this with others. Both books introduce several Bible stories; some with positive results -- like learning to trust God and be kind to others -- and some with humorous results -- like collecting frogs, making a locust pie and opening a pet hospital in the kitchen. Both books end with the child giving a Bible to someone else and starting the cycle all over again.

If You Give a Boy a Bible discusses (either through illustrations or text) these stories:
  • David and Goliath
  • The Fall of Man
  • Noah's Ark
  • Joseph sold into slavery
  • Moses and the ten plagues
  • Moses crossing the Red Sea
  • Balaam and his talking donkey
  • Joshua's two spies
  • Jericho
If You Give a Girl a Bible touches on these Bible stories:
  • Adam and Eve
  • The Great Flood
  • Noah's Ark
  • Elijah and the Ravens
  • Samson and Delilah
  • Esther
  • Jonah
  • John the Baptist
  • Feeding of the 5000
Both books were written and illustrated by Andy Holmes. Primarily done in colored pencil, the illustrations feature expressive characters and funny situations. They complement the texts perfectly and add greatly to the entertainment value of the books.

What I Like: These books are charming. My kids (ages 6 and 5) like the illustrations and the silly circumstances. (I laughed out loud at a few of them!) I like that it shows the real possibility that a simple gift can have huge, positive and eternal repercussions. The best part, though, is that these books have inspired my kids to want to give Bibles to every kid they meet. Very, very cool.

What I Dislike: Some of these "repercussions" may actually give kids bad ideas. For example, after reading about the Red Sea, the boy puts Kool-aid in his neighbor's hot tub, thereby dying everything in it -- including the neighbor. After reading about Esther's beauty contest, the girl decides to walk the "runway" of kitchen counter tops.

Overall Rating: Very Good.

Age Appeal:

Publisher Info:
Kregel KidZone, 2004 (Boy), 2005 (Girl); ISBN: 0825455138 (Boy), 0825455189 (Girl); Hardback; $10.99

Buy If You Give a Boy a Bible Now at for $8.79!
Buy If You Give a Girl a Bible Now at for $8.79!

Special Info: See our reviews of other books by this author.

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