Non-Fiction Review: Treasury of Bible Stories

Treasury of Bible Stories by Donna Jo Napoli
Treasury of Bible Stories
by Donna Jo Napoli (Author), Christina Balit (Illustrator)

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

These are retellings of Biblical stories from Genesis to Daniel as interpreted by the author, and reimagined with embellishments and dialogue. Starting with Creation, this book includes 28 Old Testament stories, ending with Daniel in the Lion’s Den. Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Joshua, Samson, Elijah, Job, Jonah, David, Solomon, Esther, and Ruth are all included with their struggles and failures, and the power of God in their lives.

The writing can be flowery at times, and the author takes a few little liberties with the history. However, there are also some really wonderful cultural and historical additions that enhance the stories as the reader learns about ancient cultures. I wouldn’t trust this as a source of my religious belief, but it is an enjoyable imagining of what Biblical times could have been like.
Each story has a special section that gives factoids about ancient civilizations, findings from archaeological digs, old rivers and maps, flora and fauna from ancient times, and references to Biblical people in other contemporary writings.

At the back of the book, there is a beautiful map of Palestine in ancient times, as well as a timeline of early civilizations, and a glossary of all the people mentioned in the Bible stories.

The illustrations are gorgeous and colorful! There are people of many different ethnicities depicted as the main Bible characters. For instance, Adam and Eve have dark skin, but Noah’s skin color is lighter, while Joseph has a brown skin color. This is consistent with the variety of appearance that would have been present in early peoples.

I would recommend this to children and teens ages 10-16.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a free and honest review.

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