Many Christian families will want to make room on the shelves for this big book.

THE BIG BOOK OF BIBLE QUESTIONS

Powell, a veteran of adult apologetics, teams up with Christian children’s author Parker (Night Night, Zoo, illustrated by Virginia Allyn, 2019, etc.) for this colorful compendium of Bible questions.>

Starting with basic theology presented in accessible language and engaging illustrations, the authors progress through the Old and New Testaments, answering questions that follow along with the traditional Christian ordering of the books of the Bible. Though more-difficult passages and characters from the source text are glossed over, the authors do an admirable job of presenting Bible stories and doctrinal teaching in a way that is kid-friendly and leaves room for questions the text does not have a firm answer for. Because of this deft flexibility while remaining true to the canon, this book will have broad appeal in a variety of homes and for those curious to learn about core concepts of Christian theology. The pitying attitude expressed toward adherents of non-Christian beliefs, set opposite photographs of an Indian bharatanatyam dancer, a Buddhist monk, a woman in niqab, a child in a kippah, and a professorial-looking white man (a representative atheist?), among others, makes plain its evangelical roots, however. While Tempest’s illustrations depict diverse believers, most artwork featured is from Western traditions, and several Bible characters appear white rather than Middle Eastern even though the text explicitly points out these origins of the Bible stories. There is no backmatter.

Many Christian families will want to make room on the shelves for this big book. (Religion. 7-12)

Pub Date: March 3, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-4964-3524-8

Page Count: 144

Publisher: Tyndale House

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2020

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IF YOU LIVED DURING THE PLIMOTH THANKSGIVING

A measured corrective to pervasive myths about what is often referred to as the “first Thanksgiving.”

Contextualizing them within a Native perspective, Newell (Passamaquoddy) touches on the all-too-familiar elements of the U.S. holiday of Thanksgiving and its origins and the history of English colonization in the territory now known as New England. In addition to the voyage and landfall of the Mayflower, readers learn about the Doctrine of Discovery that arrogated the lands of non-Christian peoples to European settlers; earlier encounters between the Indigenous peoples of the region and Europeans; and the Great Dying of 1616-1619, which emptied the village of Patuxet by 1620. Short, two- to six-page chapters alternate between the story of the English settlers and exploring the complex political makeup of the region and the culture, agriculture, and technology of the Wampanoag—all before covering the evolution of the holiday. Refreshingly, the lens Newell offers is a Native one, describing how the Wampanoag and other Native peoples received the English rather than the other way around. Key words ranging from estuary to discover are printed in boldface in the narrative and defined in a closing glossary. Nelson (a member of the Leech Lake Band of Minnesota Chippewa) contributes soft line-and-color illustrations of the proceedings. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Essential. (Nonfiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Nov. 2, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-338-72637-4

Page Count: 96

Publisher: Scholastic Nonfiction

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2021

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An empowering choice.

WHAT'S THE BIG DEAL ABOUT ELECTIONS

Shamir and Faulkner take readers on a trip through various moments in U.S. history as they explore the democratic process.

The text begins in 1884, when a young man rides for hours to deliver his local ballot box in the state of Nebraska. The book then jumps in nonlinear fashion from key moment to key moment, explaining its importance: Native Americans were granted citizenship in 1924 (their status as members of sovereign nations goes unmentioned); the emergency number 911 was created in 1968; George Washington was the only presidential candidate ever to run unopposed. The information is divided into general paragraphs that begin with a question and text boxes that supply trivia and provide additional context to the paragraphs. Children’s and teens’ roles are often cited, such as their participation in the civil rights movement and the lowering of the voting age from 21 to 18. The information ranges from national elections to local, expanding on what can be done on a national level and what can occur locally. Along the way, Faulkner includes a diverse mixture of citizens. A range of ethnic groups, minorities, and people of various body sizes and abilities are included, making the book visually welcoming to all readers. An early image depicting a blind woman with both guide dog and cane appears to be the only visual misstep. The backmatter includes a timeline and sources for additional reading.

An empowering choice. (Informational picture book. 7-12)

Pub Date: Aug. 28, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5247-3807-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: June 25, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2018

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