Adam, Adam What Do You See?

Michael Sampson, Author, Bill Martin, Jr., Author, Cathy Felstead, Illustrator
Michael Sampson, Author, Bill Martin, Jr., Author, Cathy Felstead, Illustrator Thomas Nelson Publishers $14.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-8499-7614-8
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Adapting the structure and rhythms of Martin's classic Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? to Christian themes, Martin and Sampson (Star of the Circus) offer young children a friendly, age-appropriate introduction to biblical figures and concepts. In just a few words, the authors encapsulate and allude to the Bible's most dramatic moments, leaving plenty of room for discussion and leading readers to the biblical verses that serve as sources. Adam, answering the title question, says, ""I see creation all around me""; Genesis 2:4-25 is cited. Abraham's response is distilled with particular thoughtfulness: ""I see a starry sky blinking at me."" Evenly divided between Old and New Testament personages, the volume builds to an encounter with Christ (""Little Child, Little Child,/ What do you see?/ I see Jesus watching over me"") and a Christian coda (""Jesus, Jesus,/ What do you see?/ I see [the previously named characters] all seeking me""). Felstead's (Who Made Me?) exuberant painted-paper collages honor Eric Carle's work in Brown Bear and its companions, although her palette is milder. Her compositions vary the pace, alternating moments of tranquility (e.g., Ruth happily entering ""a new land waiting for me"") with lots of action (Paul fleeing his cell, stones cascading in the background, illustrates ""an earthquake setting me free""). The simplicity of text and art belie masterly craftsmanship. Ages 3-7. (Sept.)
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