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Elkan: The Adventure of a Lifetime Review by Cindy West

By John and Kathy Eytchison
Tate Publishing and Enterprises
127 E. Trade Center Terrace
Mustang, OK 73064

Have you ever traveled the Seven Seas (or C's) of History? Have you ever really experienced Creation, Corruption, Catastrophe, Confusion, Christ, the Crucifixion, and Consummation as told in the Bible? Elkan, the main character of this book, hasn't truly experienced any of these things. Having grown up in church, he has heard all the stories of the Bible, but it isn't until he takes a journey on the Seven Seas that he discovers those stories to be Truth.

With Captain Kamali as his guide, Elkan boards a ship called The Spirit of God. On the journey through the seven seas, Elkan discovers many truths about God and His Word. For instance, as he walks along the path to the Garden of Eden eating perfectly unblemished fruit and as he swims in a crystal-clear ocean alongside all the sea creatures without fear, he realizes the truth that everything really was perfect in the beginning. As he experiences the destruction of the Tower of Babel and sees that people can no longer understand each other's language, he realizes the story he so often read wasn't just a story.

As he discovers truths at each stop, Elkan finds keys that fit into seven locks of a treasure chest found onboard the ship. His task from the start of his journey has been to find all seven keys and unlock the box. By the end of his trip, he no longer really needs to open the box because he's figured out the treasure inside. He's figured out that the Bible is real and true. He's figured out that Jesus came to save a sinful world. And most of all, he's figured out that he needs Jesus. He really needs Jesus--not just because a Sunday school teacher tells him so, but because he's witnessed the need firsthand. He's heard Jesus teach. He's watched Jesus die for him. He's listened to Jesus give the Great Commission. Oh, he knows without a doubt.

My children and I were drawn into this book of historical fiction from the very beginning. The action, mystery, and suspense keep you coming back for more! We've done studies on the Seven C's of History before, but reading this book made our studies come alive. The perspective of actually traveling through time and being a part God's history as it took place was unique and exciting.

Although we enjoyed the book very much, there were a few writing issues we struggled with a bit. First, there were only seven chapters. The symbolism of seven chapters is obvious, but several of the chapters were very long. It was hard to find a stopping point and nearly impossible to read a chapter in one sitting. Second, the descriptive language was often too descriptive. Our minds were sometimes overwhelmed with the amount of description to process. And finally, some of the sentences were grammatically awkward, making them hard to read. Overall, though, I feel that these issues are minor compared to the message and excitement the book has to offer.

My children are seven and ten, but I think older children would enjoy this book as well. Children younger than seven may have a difficult time keeping up with the story line. We saw it as a real treat to read this book after having recently completed a study of the Seven C's of History. I can see how the book would make a good follow-up, or even a good beginning, to such a study. The title of the book is Elkan: The Adventure of a Lifetime. We enjoyed the adventure. I hope you do too!

Product review by Cindy West, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, November 2007