The Sto­ry of Jacob’s Travels

Ali­son Green­gard; Car­ol Rack­lin-Siegel, illus.
  • Review
By – October 24, 2011

Jacob’s Trav­els describes what hap­pened to Jacob when he ran away to Haran and met the love­ly Rachel. It is part of the EKS Pub­lish­ing series of Bible stories. 

The author states in her intro­duc­tion that she omit­ted some sen­tences and short­ened oth­ers, but did not change or add any Hebrew text. Each page offers a trans­la­tion, not nec­es­sar­i­ly lit­er­al, of the Hebrew. For exam­ple, the words in the sto­ry read: Your name will be Israel because you have strug­gled with God and won.” The lit­er­al trans­la­tion at the end of the book says, You will no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striv­en with God and prevailed.” 

The lay­out serves its pur­pose although it’s not par­tic­u­lar­ly imag­i­na­tive (text/​picture repeat­ed in dou­ble page spreads). The words of the text — first Hebrew and then Eng­lish under­neath — are print­ed in a clear font that will help chil­dren read more eas­i­ly. Car­ol Rack­lin-Siegel, a tex­tile artist who paints on silk, has used this medi­um to effec­tive­ly enhance and extend the mean­ing of the text. Green­gard and Rack­lin-Siegel have pre­vi­ous­ly pub­lished oth­er Bible sto­ries with EKS: The Tow­er of Babel, Rebec­ca, Noah’s Ark, and Lech Lecha. Let’s hope they con­tin­ue this superb part­ner­ship. Ages 5 – 7.

Anne Dublin is the teacher-librar­i­an at Holy Blos­som Tem­ple in Toron­to, Cana­da and an award-win­ning author of books for chil­dren and young adults. Her lat­est book is June Call­wood: A Life of Action (Sec­ond Sto­ry Press, 2006).

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