This book is designed to be a family story book with occasional color pictures to bring the tales to life for children.
The pictures are much like the front cover image. There are 122 full-color images. The text is written in a way that is not closely familiar with a word for word translation of the Bible, taking a much more liberal approach to the thought for though consideration. Please note, this book is NOT a Bible. For any consideration, consider it a paraphrase of a paraphrase. Why do I give it such a harsh consideration? I read some of the pages of this book to my boys and had to stop. While the general idea of some events is recorded, there are facts presented that are flat-out false. For example, there is an illustration showing the ark with only two of each animal. It wasn’t the hugest consideration for me, but when I read the text, I was appalled: the written story itself actually states that G-d selected only a pair of each species. This misconception is common in the world, but for a book that states it carries an “outstanding tradition of excellence,” as well as featuring “[b]iblically accurate without doctrinal bias,” I would expect much better. While the facts appear to be correct, they are presented in a manner that is misleading and confusing, at first (in the Flood event) stating only a pair of each animal, and then changing the text to seven pairs of each animal that is useful (whereas it should be the word clean, in reference to Jewish dietary laws).
I like the idea of presenting material inviting to families. However, this book misses the mark on all counts. The illustrations are antiquated, the facts are incorrect, and the overall look and feel suggests it has a better fit for Amish crowds or the Bible Belt during the 1800’s. As for today’s society, this book has no real place. I wish I could give it a good review, as I would personally not want to insult the effort behind the material, nor a book that is designed to help spread G-d’s message, but I can’t do it. This book is, at maximum, worthy of two stars, and in reality, best fit for one star.
So how could it be improved? There is already a vast market for this crowd, so off the bat, is it really necessary to have the book? Frankly, no. But to improve this book, the publishers would need to re-write the entire text to make it accurate and factual. Being a paraphrase is fine, but the facts need to remain facts. Additionally, the illustrations need a facelift. I understand the attempt to honor the late Clive Uptton with this engagement, but to reach a new crowd, newer images are a must.
If these things change, let me know. I’d be glad to review the newer work and see if the errors have been corrected. Hire a new artist and a new writer, and there’s hope…Disclosure: I have received a reviewer copy and/or payment in exchange for an honest review of the product mentioned in this post.