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Simon and the Easter Miracle: A Traditional Tale for Easter Hardcover – January 18, 2012


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten - 2
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Lion Hudson (January 18, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0745960588
  • ISBN-13: 978-0745960586
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,643,100 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Beautiful book of prayers."  —School Library Journal on The Lion Book of Day-by-Day Prayers


"This quiet, gentle story fills a need for Easter-themed stories that go beyond bunnies and Easter baskets."  –Kirkus Reviews 


"Joslin uses Christian imagery and simple, elegant prose to flesh out the Gospel's one-line story of Simon of Cyrene"  —School Library Journal

About the Author

Mary Joslin is the author of The Lion Book of Best-Loved Prayers, The Lion Book of Day-by-Day Prayers, The Lion Day-by-Day Bible, On That Christmas Night, and The Story of the Cross. Anna Luraschi is the illustrator of numerous books, including Bedtime Rhymes, Twelve Dancing Princesses, Stories for Little Children, and The Usborne Book of Christmas Poems.

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Customer Reviews

The first thing that I have to say is that I felt like this book ended very abruptly.
Margaret C.
Yes, we know that Jesus was the man, being beaten, and carrying the cross, but why didn't the author tell us that?
Godspoetic1
I found the book to be too politically correct, rather than a children's book on the real story of Easter.
cllane2

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By cllane2 on March 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This story portrays Simon, the man who in the Bible is recorded to have helped Jesus carry His cross, as a farmer making his way to the market to sell wine, bread, and eggs. As Simon gets close to town, he sees a crowd of people calling out "Crucify him!" Then the officer (or Centurion) sees Simon and tells him to carry a man's cross.

While the story is beautifully illustrated, it is a weak Easter story. Sure, it mentions God. But it fails to mention who was on the cross and why he was there. In fact, the man sentenced to die said only that his crime was "preaching a message of peace." I found the book to be too politically correct, rather than a children's book on the real story of Easter.
I give the illustrations 5 stars. But the text of the book only 2 stars.
I received this book free from Kregal for the purpose of this review.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ann B. Hibbard VINE VOICE on March 27, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Simon is a familiar character in Scripture, recognized as the man who carried Jesus' cross when His broken body could not longer carry it. In Simon and the Easter Miracle, Simon is just coming into town with produce to sell in a market booth when he comes across the commotion of Jesus being led up the hill to Golgotha. Simon is ordered to put down his wares and pick up the cross. He reluctantly does as he is ordered after finding as safe a place as possible to stow his things. As he picks up Jesus' cross, he asks what He had done to deserve death.

The man shrugged slightly. "Preaching a message of peace," he said.

Simon carries the cross up the hill and then hurries away. He returns to where he left his produce only to discover that all but a dozen eggs has been trampled and ruined. He returns home dejected. Two mornings later, he goes to his barn to find the dozen eggs cracked and empty. Later he finds a dozen doves flying around, and then he sees that his new crop is growing better than expected. There the story ends.

Simon and the Easter Miracle is a sweet story based on a Polish folktale about the Biblical Simon of Cyrene. It definitely is fun to read about how other nationalities have taken portions of Bible and turned them into traditional folktales. From that perspective, this is a fun book, and I would recommend it as part of a missions project to talk about the Polish people. But, I have several major reservations about recommending this book as an Easter story.

-The Biblical story of the first Easter is not told. The only connection to Scripture that this book holds is that Simon carries the cross.
-Jesus is never mentioned by name.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By M. Schemanski on March 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Simon and the Easter Miracle is a traditional tale for Easter about the man Simon who had to carry Christ's cross to the crucifixion.

Simon gathers his wares to sell at the local market and heads out, not expecting to have the Roman solider demand he drop his things and pick up the cross. Simon didn't even know who this man was, beaten and worn out and unable to carry his cross the rest of the way. The book says he 'picked up the prisoner's cross, simply because he had to'.
Simon deposits Christ and his cross and rushes off back to the market to find his wares stampeded and useless. He heads home without setting up a stall, defeated.

I love Easter and Easter books that are true to the gospel message. As a Christian I feel Easter is the fulcrum from which my faith exists.

I did not care for this tale at all. I don't believe that Simon would have been so selfish. I don't think he was overly concerned about his wares after he helped Christ take his cross to be crucified. The tale never once discussed that this is Christ either! Simply calls him the prisoner.. WHAT!! No information on the crucifixion, let alone the Resurrection. The Easter miracle that the story refers to is Simon being blessed with good crops and a harvest, not the Resurrection of Christ.

On the back of the book it states that this "traditional folk tale goes to the very heart of the Easter story", yet never once mentions the truth of Easter.

Very disheartened by the book and it will not be staying on our shelves. I hate to say that about any book, let alone one that tries to represent itself as a Christian book.

I received this book from Kregel in exchange for an honest review.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By VicG on March 27, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Mary Joslin in her new book, "Simon and the Easter Miracle" published by Kregel Publications gives us A Traditional Tale for Easter.

The Bible tells us that Jesus had been up all night under interrogation. Then He had been beaten, whipped, crowned with thorns and forced to carry His own cross to a hill outside Jerusalem. Physically, this was a bit much for Him and once the guards realized this they forced a man, Simon, the Cyrene, to carry the cross for Him the rest of the way to Calvary.

That is the Biblical account however "Simon and the Easter Miracle" almost is a completely different story. Yes, Simon does enter the city and is compelled to help a man carrying His wooden cross. That is all of it. At no point is "the man" identified as Jesus and the reason for His crucifixion is He gave a message of peace. No, Jesus gave us a message of salvation.

"Simon and the Easter Miracle" leans more toward the incorporation of Polish folklore where what Simon brings to market, he is a farmer, is lost except for twelve eggs which he brings back home. Then, of course, the miracle happens and all is right with the world.

"Simon and the Easter Miracle" is a nice story very colorfully illustrated by Anna Luraschi. What does it have to do with Easter? Not much, really. The focus seems to be on the eggs, as Easter is supposed to be all about eggs. Jesus did not have anything to do or say about eggs so this miracle has nothing to do with Him at all.

If you want a book that is nicely illustrated and is charming in its own way then this is the book for you. If you want a book that teaches your children something about Jesus and the events of Easter then this book will disappoint you.
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