By Dave and Neta Jackson

Bethany House Publishers

1996, 1997, 1998

Reviewed by Eileen Dahl, Freelance Writer, Orangeville, Ontario, Canada

Summary: Character building stories of historical leading figures, geared to families with children, ages 6 to 12.

As Christians, we are a part of the family of Christ--a fellowship that has survived two thousand years, and now spans the entire globe. In our family there have been courageous men and women who risked, and sometimes lost, their lives to spread the gospel, stand up against evil and injustice, and serve those in need.

Dave and Neta Jackson, in the series Hero Tales, bring to life simple, true stories of Christian men and women of the past. Children will learn about people like Martin Luther, Harriet Tubman, Watchman Nee, and Corrie ten Boom. Each Christian hero is introduced with a pencil sketch and a short biography, followed by three short stories illustrating character qualities to emulate. Concluding each story is a summary sentence, an applicable Bible verse, and discussion questions to help children and parents reflect on the story and apply the learned principles to their own lives.

While the short anecdotes can be enjoyed by both adults and children, these books are geared towards families with children ages 6 to 12. Older children may be happy to read Hero Tales on their own; however the most value will be gained from these books if an adult reads with the child, taking the time for discussion. The questions facilitate the sharing of everyday experiences and challenges and can act as a springboard for a child to share important thoughts and feelings as well. These stories could also be used for children\s stories in church or sermon illustrations.

Hero Tales can help challenge children and adults alike to be people of character, to serve God fully, and to trust Him in all areas of life. With these books, families can learn how God has been working through men and women in the past, and be affirmed that He continues to work through us today.