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Martin Luther: What Should I Do? / John Calvin: What Is the Truth?

By Catherine Mackenzie
Christian Focus Publications

Geanies House
Fearn, Tain
Ross-shire IV20 1TW
Scotland, UK
Tel: 01862 871011 

Our family values reading aloud very much! However, we've had a difficult time finding biographies that our early elementary students can read on their own. Catherine Mackenzie of Christian Focus Publications has come to our rescue! Ms. Mackenzie, who lives in the Highlands of Scotland, has published a series of biographies introducing young scholars to Martin Luther, John Calvin, Hudson Taylor, Helen Roseveare, Corrie ten Boom, George Muller, Amy Carmichael, and David Livingstone.

Each hardbound book contains thick, glossy pages with full-color drawings. The books measure 8.5 x 6 inches, which is the perfect size for young hands to manage on their own. Ms. Mackenzie does a very nice job of engaging young readers in the lives of these historical figures while pointing children toward the gospel message of Jesus Christ. The biographies are historically accurate and include many interesting details, such as the fact that John Calvin became involved in the Reformation as a result of reading Martin Luther's writings. There are a few sentences throughout these books that are a bit oddly written, which is mainly a result of the author's attempt to use simpler words for young readers. This is an excellent series for classical homeschoolers who want to introduce grammar students to figures like Martin Luther and John Calvin before students read their original source writings in later years.

Overall, our family enjoyed reading these books together as well as independently. I would recommend them to families who would like to expose their young children to biographies of great men and women of God.

Product review by Karen Yuen, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, LLC, April 2011

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