Newbery Medalist Paterson turns her talents and considerable experience as a religious educator to interpreting the life of Jesus in a style that children will understand. In a gentle, simply told fashion, Paterson begins her interpretation with the metaphor of the light of the world before introducing Mary and presenting the angel’s announcement of her forthcoming child. The author continues her well-written narrative in chronological order, focusing on Christ’s ministry and his disciples, with some simple explanations of the political situation that led to Christ’s crucifixion. The story of Jesus is necessarily shortened within this framework, leaving out some key incidents such as Christ’s baptism, but the coherent and smoothly told text succeeds in conveying a powerful and understandable story. Roca’s illustrations, previously used as illustrations in a French volume of a similar nature, are just as polished and accessible as the text, with the individualistic faces and costumes of the characters making them seem like real people. Interestingly, Jesus as an adult is always shown from behind or at a distance, making him a character that readers must interpret for themselves. (Nonfiction. 4-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2008

ISBN: 978-0-545-01172-3

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Levine/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2007

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Girls will hear the answer to the titular question.


Teaching our daughters how to love themselves is the first step toward the next generation’s owning its power.

It’s heady stuff for a picture book, but it’s never too soon for a woman—even a little woman—to know her worth. Denhollander (the first of sex offender Larry Nassar’s abuse victims to speak out) presents a poetic discourse that resonates beyond its young intended audience. Her simple rhyming couplets speak to the power of image and the messages that shape how we become who we are. The eloquence comes not from the words or phrasing as much as the message as well as the passion. Denhollander, an attorney, a mother, and a former gymnast–turned-coach for a time, delivers stanzas infused with sweet sentimentality as well as fiery fierceness. New artist Huff provides lovely, expressive illustrations depicting girls of many racial presentations in various stages of self-discovery and acceptance. The figures are smiling and cartoonlike, with oversized, round heads and sturdy bodies—though none could be called fat, none exhibits twiglike proportions. Denhollander’s book is unapologetically Christian in approach, with more than one reference to “Him” or a creation by a greater power. With sincerity helping to mitigate occasionally artless text, this is a worthwhile message for young girls who, in an age of shrinking women’s rights, need all the encouragement possible to find their voices and love themselves.

Girls will hear the answer to the titular question. (author’s note) (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 10, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-4964-4168-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Tyndale House

Review Posted Online: July 14, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2019

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An accessible but undistinguished simplification of the Bible story, with the gratuitous addition that Jonah is a man ostracized by his neighbors because he's so lazy. Patterson's bold, painterly illustrations are more satisfactory: using heroic figures and broad areas of color that recall early Renaissance frescoes, he sets the story firmly in the early eastern Mediterranean and provides an agreeably dramatic whale, including one glimpse from inside-out as Jonah emerges. An acceptable additional edition. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: March 12, 1992

ISBN: 0-688-11238-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1992

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