cover image The Not-So-Wise Man

The Not-So-Wise Man

Alan MacDonald. Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, $15 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-8028-5196-3

Reputed wise man Ashtar is so busy being self-inflated about his wisdom that signs of the impending Nativity slip right under his nose. After all, he surmises, what king would be found in a poor stable in Bethlehem? MacDonald's tale has the upbeat tone of a comedy of errors, without ever becoming slapstick. Roland's slightly cartoonish desert scenes let kids in on the joke, capturing the holy story to which Ashtar is blind. Ages 4-9. (Sept.)