Read, Wonder, Listen

List Price: $24.95

eBook$18.95 Kindle$18.95
Stories from the Bible for Young Readers

Ann Sheng Laura Alary

244 | 8.25 x 11
Hard Cover
ISBN: 978-1-77343-041-6

GOLD MEDAL WINNER of the 2019 Illumination Awards for Children's Picture Book.

“Every person who tells these stories does it in a slightly different way. And every person who reads these stories hears something a bit different. So even though these stories are very old, they are also always new.”

Laura Alary combines her gift for telling the biblical stories with historical research, contemporary concerns about language, and a compassionate and inclusive theology making Read, Wonder, Listen, a perfect children’s Bible for progressive Christians.

Read, Wonder, Listen will help children, and the adults who love them, ask the big questions of life – the same questions asked by the people in the Bible: Who are we? Where do we belong? What are we supposed to do and who are we supposed to be? Where is God? How does God want us to live?

“The reason these stories have lasted so long,” writes Alary, “the reason they were collected and saved so carefully, is because people have always found in them something precious. Something that speaks to people of all times and places. All of these stories are about the great Mystery we call God. They tell of people who met God, wondered about God, waited for God, and were surprised by God.”

That sense of wonder and surprise is strikingly and evocatively captured in the full-colour illustrations by Ann Sheng.  

Looking for a Scripture Index? Click here to download one for free!

Ann Sheng, Illustrator

Ann Sheng is a tireless learner who aspires to become a doctor, scientist and world traveller. A Canadian born and raised in China, she is currently completing her MD in Boston. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking, reading, painting, badminton and listening to podcasts. Her artworks are featured in Augur Magazine, as well as several publications from the University of Toronto.

Laura Alary, Author

Laura Alary is a teacher, preacher, storyteller and author. Born and raised in Halifax, she studied Classics at Dalhousie University, theology at Knox College, and New Testament at The University of St. Michael’s College, where she earned her Ph.D. More recently she has been pursuing a different kind of learning as the mother of three children.

 Laura is always searching for creative ways to weave together her various interests. For instance, her background in biblical interpretation informs her writing, most notably in her book Is This Story True? Similarly, Laura’s love of scripture and the power of story informs her work as children’s worship coordinator at Guildwood Community Presbyterian Church and as a denominational trainer for the Montessori-based program Children and Worship.

 Laura loves to sing, especially Mediaeval and Renaissance choral music, attempts to practise yoga and karate, and continues to write and publish picture books for children, including Jesse’s Surprise Gift, Mira and the Big StoryVictor’s Pink Pyjamas and How Do I Pray for Grandpa?.

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Media Reviews

Coordinator: Urban Mission Network at Uniting Church in Australia

Susan Burt

Words sing, dance, and swirl across the page, drawing us in, feeding our imaginative spirits, and igniting wonder and questions. Laura Alary moves amongst the spaces, the gaps between the words, what is not written in the sacred texts, and weaves historical research, scholarly interpretation, and progressive theology into the fabric of life of a people of God, and we find our stories in the stories of long ago. Along the way, we encounter the mystery we call God. Ann Sheng's wonderful illustrations are a perfect companion to this storybook for all ages. 

Faith Formation Team Leader, General Council Office the United Church of Canada

Amy Crawford

Laura Alary’s “Read Wonder Listen” adds a much-needed inclusive, yet faithful, rendering of biblical stories for children. The wonder and mystery of the stories is retained, and invites children to engage their imaginations as they hear these old, old stories. The artwork by Ann Sheng is delightful, and honestly depicts the era and people of that time and place.

Customer Reviews

Sandra O'Brien

Read Wonder Listen by Laura Alary - A wonderful Book! The stories in this book all connect and feed into one another - once I started reading the book I couldn't put it down - I was anxious to read the next story and the next and the next. These stories with messages from scripture are told in such an inviting and easy to understand language for both young and older children. The old testament is sometimes difficult to understand and interpret but these stories bring everything to life. It is easy to wonder, connect and love the characters in these stories. I purchased a number of these books as gifts for grandchildren of friends and I can't wait to share these stories with them A beautiful gift to give and receive!