Thursday, January 31, 2013
Virtual Book Tour: The Nightingale in the Garden by Rebecca Graf
You can find Rebecca all over the internet. She writes regularly for HubPages and other sites. You can read her authors blog atwww.rebeccagraf.com. Or you can follow tons of activity at A Book Lover's Library (www.abookloverslibrary.com) where she helps other authors spread the word about their works. The News in Books (www.thenewsinbooks.com) is another venture with a friend that pulls together announcements in the book world and shares them with followers. You'll never find this woman not being busy.
My Review: As with the first book in the series, the author approaches a familiar Bible story from a unique point of view. Picking up right where the first book left off, the author tells of Thomas' growing fascination with the story of the kind man his grandfather had met that memorable night so many years ago. To get the first-hand account of what happened after the Last Supper, Thomas seeks out the nightingale who witnessed the events that followed in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Once again, the author is very general in her story-telling, which leads to numerous statements like "the man", "the men", "the leader", and so on. After a while, it becomes confusing, especially to a young child, which is the age group for which this book is intended. Likewise, some of the words and phrases are those of an adult and would be difficult for young ones to understand. The book would work well as a story to read with your children, but not so much as a story for them to read for themselves.
As much as I love the premise of the book, I just couldn't get into the story. It felt like eavesdropping between two characters, with one character doing the majority of the talking. It just seemed to me like there was too much dialogue and not enough action to really keep children engaged in the story. My opinion comes from my experience as both a kindergarten teacher and a writer and is not intended to cause offense to the author. As always, I feel honor-bound to be completely honest in my reviews.
On the positive side, the illustrations were adorable and the Biblical facts within the story were correct and in no way watered down. The author has the makings of a fantastic series with a very unique perspective. Overall, I simply feel the books need a little tweaking.