Thursday, August 12, 2010

Book Review: A Book of Angels

Over the past several weeks my daughter, who is nearly nine, and I have been reading A Book of Angels.  The book is comprised of well known bible stories that feature angels.  The vast majority of the stories are taken from the Old Testament and there are a few stories that are from the New Testament.

I liked how this book took stories that may not be well understood by young children and presented them in a way that could be easily grasped and retained by the reader.  My daughter was able to read this book chapter by chapter and then summarize each story for me.  She came away from reading this book with a newfound appreciation for bible stories.  She enjoyed reading the stories and found them very interesting.  I particularly liked when she would read a story and then come to me and ask me if we hadn't heard that story before at Mass or somewhere else.  I was really happy to see her making those connections.

I think the reading level for this book is easily in the 4th to 6th grade range.  My daughter, who is entering 4th grade next month, was able to read this book with relative ease.  The stories in this book could easily be read aloud to younger children, but the lack of illustrations may make their attention wane.  Each story has a single illustration at the beginning of the chapter.  The illustrations are black and white, but they are nicely done.

One of the things I really love about this book is it nicely mirrors some of the lessons found in the Baltimore Catechism and the Faith and Life text book that we use for my daughter's religious education. I think it's great that this book complements those books so wonderfully.  That simple fact is one of the reasons I love the children's books put out by Sophia Institute Press.  This book is among many from this publisher that I like to refer to as  stealth catechesis: she's enjoying herself and learning her faith at the same time.  It's a win-win situation.

I was provided with a complimentary review copy of this book by Sophia Institute Press in exchange for my honest review.

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