Favorite Parables from the Bible: Stories Jesus Told
Nick Butterworth & Mick Inkpen
I’ve been looking forward to this day for a long time. It’s the first time we’re reviewing a book that was unknown to us until a reader brought it to our attention! (Are you still there, Lynn? If so, thanks!) It’s a great opportunity to remind you all that Sarah and I love hearing from you. Don’t hesitate to email us, especially if you know of a great book we should check out!
Stories Jesus Told is a compilation of 8 parable retellings that were originally published separately. The text is simple yet meaningful, which makes this small book (barely 7″x7″) a good choice for early readers ready to tackle books on their own. It is equally good as a read aloud to toddlers and preschoolers; it’s a delight to read, not least because of illustrations done by award-winning illustrator Mick Inkpen (best known for his Kipper books).
“The Precious Pearl” is perhaps my favorite chapter in the collection. Its illustrations are fun and whimsical without being irreverent and the storytelling is right on par. Even though I knew how the parable ends, Nick Butterworth writes in such a way that piqued my curiosity and kept me turning pages. Like Ella Lindvall, he does a great job of translating Christ’s parables for a young audience and yet this book felt as relevant to me as to my toddler. That very quality is one of the things I love most about excellent theological kidlit, so you can be sure that this book is one of my new favorites!
Stories Jesus Told
is out of print (it was reprinted in 2012!), but don’t let that stop you because there are lots of used copies available for very reasonable prices. Below are links to the individual volumes of the stories in this collection in case you’d prefer to buy them in that format. I haven’t seen the shorter books in person, but I bet they’d be a great addition to the quiet bags that some churches set out for young children to peruse during services.