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by Sandra Magsamen ; illustrated by Sandra Magsamen

Pub Date: Dec. 26th, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-338-58942-9
Publisher: Cartwheel/Scholastic

Five Bible stories are told in 10 short pages and illustrated in Magsamen’s characteristic faux appliqué style.

Each double-page spread is rendered on narrow board pages and depicts a new Bible story or parable. The top half of the spread shares a summary of the story told in forced rhyme hand-lettered in white. The bottom half presents a brightly-colored illustration of the story employing cartoon animals and humans with stitch-work borders. A heart in the bottom right or left corner is emblazoned with text that presents the key lesson of the story. “The Parable of the Lost Sheep,” for instance, shows a flock of white sheep with one black sheep in the middle. Written on the heart is the message: “This story reminds us that everyone is important.” Some artistic license is taken. The Creation story shows two children in modern dress, one with a beige complexion and brown pigtails and another with straight black hair and brown skin, enjoying the natural world. (“God made everything for you and me / because He loves us endlessly!”) In the Jonah story, a smiling man with a medium brown skin tone happily topples into the whale’s mouth. Noah’s Ark is populated by parent-child animal dyads rather than male and female pairings. The text repeatedly emphasizes God’s love for readers and employs male pronouns for God.

This kind and gentle introduction features endearing art and clunky rhymes.

(Board book. 1-3)