With limited pages for even further limited text, some Christian board books leave much to be desired. They can feel sickly sweet, terribly shallow or just tokenistic. But the Baby Believers board books, put out by Harvest Kids, is refreshingly different.
I was first introduced to the series when Karle Grice, from the Wandering Bookseller, thrust a copy of Psalms of Praise: A Movement Primer into my hands. He said, ‘You’ll like this one', and he was right!
The series is written by Danielle Hitchen, but much of that ‘writing’ is in concept rather than original text. Each page of the ‘primers’ introduces a delightfully illustrated word or idea. In Psalms of Praise. the words include actions we might use when worshiping God. In Our God, the words are shape names, for Jesus Heals they are body parts.
Each page/word is accompanied by a relevant Bible passage (using CEV or ESB to ensure ease of understanding for young listeners). This is accompanied by Jessica Blanchard’s engaging artwork. The books are creatively beautiful, prioritise the Biblical text and are quietly meditative, recognising the social interaction and setting board books were made for.
While all different in tone, each of the Baby Believers titles have their own emphasis and strength. I love how Psalms of Praise takes the child on a celebration of movement from daybreak to bedtime, ending with a gentle ‘lie down’ and Psalm 4:8.
Jesus Heals, possibly my favourite, considers the parts of the body as they relates various accounts of Jesus healing different people. From head and eyes to the whole body, this board book manages to sum up the gospel and leave you with a sense that you just met Jesus, compassionate, powerful and God among us.
I didn’t find Our God quite as meaningful, possibly because of the limitations of its subject matter. This isn’t to say it can’t be enjoyed in storytime, but the connections between shape and Scripture reference didn’t flow as easily.
To sum up, this is a great little series, perfect gifts for babies and extremely well made.
All the details you need:
Titles: Jesus Heals: An Anatomy Primer, Psalms of Praise: A Movement Primer and Our God: A Shapes Primer
Written by: Danielle Hitchen, Illustrated by Jessica Blanchard
Publisher and imprint: Baby Believers, Harvest Kids, Harvest House Publishers.
Available at The Wandering Bookseller, or your favourite Christian bookseller.
The Penny Drops
In high school I used to write what I'd call 'thinks' - little bits of writing about whatever topic or issue I was mulling over at the time. I still write these little pieces.
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