Friday, December 4, 2015

The Biggest Story by Kevin DeYoung

While the art is what sells this one, I have to say the message is done very well too.

Without becoming a storybook, DeYoung intended to convey the over-arching message of the Bible: belief in God is the path to heaven. He doesn't get wrapped up in telling about Noah, or lingering on the nativity - he briefly touches on them on the way to a larger message. It's an interesting approach, and a couple times I laughed at the simplification job he does: the popular betrayal story gets summed up as Joseph's brothers "almost killed him because of his fancy coat."

No matter your Christian denomination, the message here is going to ring true and stand with church doctrine. There's obviously a lot more to it and this shouldn't be your only sourcebook, but I like it as a different tactic for kids. It's something I haven't seen before.

But let me move on to the art. Because illustrator Don Clark knocks one out of the park with this book; the retro-inspired design is simply rendered yet intricately detailed. I can't stop looking at the Garden of Eden, and the way he depicts a lot of anything (houses, people) is stupendous. I read an advanced reader's copy provided by the publisher, but I've now also seen the finished publication which is even brighter and more engrossing. There is a lot of visual inspiration here for artists of any age.

In this season of books as gifts, I'm gonna recommend this one for the Sunday school kids on your list. It's different, it's absolutely gorgeous, and it's a book that will definitely give you something to talk about.

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