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THANK YOU GOD:  FROM KIDS AROUND THE WORLD by Allia Zobel Nolan

THANK YOU GOD: FROM KIDS AROUND THE WORLD

By Allia Zobel Nolan (Author) , Miki Sakamoto (Illustrator)

Age Range: 3 - 5

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-310-72264-9
Publisher: Zonderkidz

In simplistic rhyme, children in different countries praise God for the good things in their lives, the scenes a mishmash of cultural stereotypes.

Lady Liberty, pyramids, fiestas with piñatas, “sunlight in Red Square,” “castles and shamrocks,” and “wooden clogs that go click-clack” are pointed out by nearly identical, round-faced, smiling children, differing only slightly in skin and hair colors. The first spread shows children pointing to their unnamed countries on a globe. (The Australian girl appears to point to Greenland!) The first lift-the-flap, double-page spread shows Fourth of July fireworks at the Statue of Liberty. The book includes single-page illustrations on the left (Egypt, Russia, an unspecified East African country, India and Australia) and lift-the-flap pages on the right-hand side depicting Mexico, Ireland, an East Asian country (China or Japan?), the Netherlands and a Nordic nation. The illustrations under the flap add little detail; other than the Mexican example, in which the piñata breaks and the candies shower down in the hidden section, this novelty is not used very effectively. The book’s cultural tone-deafness is evident in such gaffes as the Egyptian children's camel named, of all things, George. Although this book could be used in Sunday schools more interested in feel-good simplicity then accuracy, its small size limits its usefulness with large groups.

Families and teachers who want to make children aware of God’s creativity can find better books than this throwback to ’50s-style international goodwill. (Picture book. 3-5)