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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

I Am Ruth

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"… For wherever you go, I will go; And wherever you lodge, I will lodge;
 Your people shall be my people, And your God, my God….” – Ruth 1:16
I am Ruth, a beautiful rendition of the scriptural account of Ruth and Naomi, is a visual odyssey featuring photographs taken near the actual Holy Land sites. The story of Ruth is retold as it is reenacted in the photographs.

This unique book includes the context of this account, explaining the the events that led to Naomi and Ruth's situation. Excerpts of Scripture accompany this inspiring story, which is retold with all of the historical and cultural details of Ruth's time in a really compelling way. 

The combination of the stunning images along with the beautiful way the story is written drew me in right away:
"While Naomi would view Bethlehem as one returning home in grief, Ruth would look at the town and the people she had claimed as her own much differently. She was in a different land, among a different people, and both her future and that of Naomi had to seem very precarious. Yet, as noted earlier, Ruth was determined and made an important, lifelong commitment to Naomi. She had to sense the aching of Naomi returning to her homeland with nothing , the woman she had come to love, the woman she had left her own mother for, a woman who must have powerfully influenced her in terms of a strong faith in God before Naomi's own grief and loss became bitterness."  (p. 17)
 I am Ruth contains a map at the beginning which details the path from Bethlehem to Moab. When combined with the photographs of the landscape, readers get a sense of just what Naomi's family's journey entailed.

The book is also nicely divided into four chapters: Faith, Loyalty, Grace, and Restored.

I think this version of the book of Ruth is a wonderful book to share with kids and teens, as it shows them that these were real people in a real place. I especially love the lineage page, which traces Ruth's genealogy to Jesus.  

{The publisher provided a review copy for my honest opinions.}