This week CFRB presents The Ark, The Reed and The FireCloud by Jenny L. Cote. Here’s some of my thoughts on this story.
Living Ink Books (September, 2008)
In this series debut, Max (a Scottish terrier) and Liz (an elegant feline) become responsible for a small band of animals who are instructed by a voice to follow the fire cloud. Eventually readers discover the voice is attributed to God and the animals are lead to the Ark as part of the preservation of species God planned to repopulate the earth following the flood. This particular adventure takes place as they travel on the Ark during the flood and come to know one another, Noahâ€™s family and the other animals during the months of being stuck on this boat. We see the bad guys too of course though this is a childrenâ€™s book and the mysteries encountered are at a level that would be appropriate for younger readers or listeners. While the story premise is intriguing, the book starts out rather slowly and the main plot lines show up well into the narrative. The message of trusting God and obedience that is illustrated through the adventures of the animals is clear yet doesnâ€™t detract from the flow of the plot. This book would be a good read aloud for younger children that have an appropriate attention span or a book to read together with an older child capable of reading on their own. It is written at a level that many readers 8 and up could manage although the length may be a difficulty for some at the younger end and the simplicity may frustrate some more mature readers. It was an interesting read and a nice change of pace however for me and I understand it is being converted into animated film format as well. I suspect the film version will be enticing to those who have read the book as well as those who simply enjoy a good childrenâ€™s story on screen. (ISBN#9780899571980, 464pp, $14.99)