Book Review Wednesday: Jotham’s Journey

Book Title:  Jotham's Journey; A Storybook for Advent
Author: Arnold Ytreeide

Genre: Fiction Storybook, Christmas

Publisher:  Kregel Publications (August 26, 2008)

Pages: 168

Ages: 6-14 and up

Why Did I Choose It?  Well it's December of course and I love to have a large stack of Christmas themed books to read throughout the month.  I wanted to be sure you all had a chance to know about it as it's a book that's meant to be read in parts, nightly, throughout all advent.  It's still early December so I'm sure you could catch up easily if you get it now and read a couple extra sections here and there.

A Bit From The Back Cover:  Over and over Jotham screamed for his family, but there was no one to hear him.  They had vanished.  He was alone.  Where had they gone? How long ago did they leave? Through quick, stabbing sobs Jotham told himself, "I must look for my family.  I must search until I find them."  And so his journey began.

My Review: My children and I read this first book of a series of three several years ago.  Jotham's Journey is divided into short chapters to allow for nightly readings starting 4 Sundays before Christmas (and can easily be caught up by those who start late or who forget a night here and there). We became mesmerized by the adventures of ten-year old Jotham as he travels across Israel in search of his family. We felt compelled to read more as the end of many chapters kept us on the edge of our seats as Jotham faces robbers, kidnappers and other challenges until the end. Can you guess what he will find in Bethlehem?  It was fun fitting the pieces of the story together with information we knew from the Gospels and information gleaned from the Old Testament to realize who all  the characters were in Jotham's story and the role they all played in the real Christmas story. I highly recommend making this book and the others in the series part of your advent/nativity family traditions.

Other Books By This Author:  Bartholomew's Passage,  Tabitha's Travels and Amon's Adventure

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4 thoughts on “Book Review Wednesday: Jotham’s Journey

  1. Angela Weaver

    Does it work for Orthodoxy? I mean some of these books my be fine and well written, but are they Orthodox? We have spent a long time getting away from heavily protestant Christmas books.

    1. orthodoxmom3

      I believe it does or I wouldn't be recommending it. I believe it is more Catholic than Protestant as it talks about Advent customs in the beginning of the book and they sounded Catholic to me. I could be wrong. I'm not sure of Protestant customs during Advent. But obviously it not told in an "Orthodox" perspective per say as it's a 4 week story rather than our Orthodox 40 days. However, I can't see where there could be much controversy of beliefs in this story as it focuses on the telling of a child crossing Israel and uses biblical characters to tell about the coming of the Messiah. It doesn't talk about 'saving' or other topics where Protestants and Orthodox can differ so much in their interpretations. I know when I first read it was a time that I was very leery of reading anything "Protestant" in nature as I was such a new Orthodox Convert. I don't recall being skeptical or worried when reading it and I know of several other Orthodox families that have read it and enjoyed it. I see nothing wrong reading books written by other members of other Christian faiths so long as it doesn't sway from our Orthodox believes. I don't believe this one does at all. I hope that helps?

    1. orthodoxmom3

      Yes, I believe it does. It depends on the kid, of course - but I believe most kids who like read-aloud time would enjoy this one!

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