Celia Barker Lottridge, Retold by, Linda Wolfsgruber, Illustrator , illus. by Linda Wolfsgruber. Groundwood $24.95 (140p) ISBN 978-0-88899-497-4

Lottridge (Ticket to Curlew ) lets the stories about Jesus found in the four Gospels of the Bible shine anew in this accessible and entertaining collection. Demonstrating a facility for crafting a fine tale, Lottridge culls and collates key and common elements from the accounts of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John to form a chronological story of Jesus' life, death and resurrection, making all the familiar events sound fresh and of a whole. The clear language and crisp phrasing here allow readers to more closely imagine and understand what the people of Jesus' time may have been thinking and feeling. As a result, these concise and colorful passages are ideal for reading aloud and sharing with the family or a group. Throughout, Wolfsgruber's (Inanna: From the Myths of Ancient Sumer ) sophisticated mixed-media compositions extend the stories' compelling tone. An arresting blend of watercolor, ink and paper collage, they balance a range of surprising textures and distinctive, complex patterns with earth tones and skillful crosshatching. The artist confers a timeless quality on her subjects; at times they have the look of antiquity, elsewhere, their wide eyes and angular noses recall cubism. Text and art seem both of a period and contemporary, sustaining a positive mood and sure to appeal to a broad range of readers. Ages 7-up. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 04/26/2004
Release date: 02/01/2004
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