Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Animals of the Bible for Young Children

Animals of the Bible for Young Children was written by Marie-Helene Delval and illustrated by Aurelia Fronty. Using age-appropriate language, it re-tells stories of the Bible that include animals. Even stories that feature animals in very minor roles get full attention here. With just one two-page spread devoted to each, the stories are short, ranging from one to seven sentences.

At the back of the book all of the include stories are listed with Scripture references so that readers may examine the full texts.

The bright illustrations remind me of Paul Gauguin's works. They feature heavy brushstrokes, a stylized technique, and lots of saturated color.

What I Like: I like the concept. My son cannot get enough books about animals. He loves them! I greatly appreciate the idea of using his interest in animals to get him more interested in Scripture. The index at the back is a wonderful inclusion. I'm always a fan of books that refer readers back to the source, in this case, specific passages of Scripture.

What I Dislike:
This book didn't meet my expectations. Based on the book's title, target age range and the summary on the back cover, I expected animal facts and scientific trivia interwoven with Scriptural truths. Instead I got extremely short paraphrases of Bible stories that include animals. This would be fine if done thoroughly, but because the stories are so abbreviated and frequently taken out of context, the meanings behind these stories are lost. The cohesive nature and themes of the Bible are lost. My son (5 years old) was disappointed and became bored very quickly.

Overall Rating:
I think this book would be nice for younger kids. For the specified age range (4-8), I rate it Ho-Hum. But for younger children (2-5), I rate it Good.

Age Appeal:
The publisher says 4-8, but I recommend 2-5.

Publisher Info:
Eerdman's Books for Young Readers, 2010; ISBN: 0802853765; Hardback; 88 pages; $16.50

Buy it Now at for $12.99!

OR Buy it at for $12.38.

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

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