I want to thank Cross Focused Reviews and Reformation Heritage Books for providing me with a copy of Anselm of Canterbury by Simonetta Carr in return for my honest opinion.
Anselm (1033-1109) didn’t want to be the archbishop of Canterbury. He wanted to study and to write about God. He did that, explaining important issues such as the answer to the question “Why did God have to become man in order to save us from our sins?” His answer has been referenced in discussions and catechisms ever since.
Simonetta Carr has written a new book for her Christian Biographies for Young Readers series. Anselm of Canterbury (Reformation Heritage Books, 2013) is the sixth in a line of spectacularly beautiful and well-written biographies for children ages 7-12…..
Anselm of Canterbury is presented in a picture book style format, but it is not your typical picture book. There are six chapters, a timeline, a section with interesting facts from Anselm’s life and times, and excerpts from Anselm’s writings. Throughout the book, there are well-captioned photographs pertaining to Anselm. Children will view the homes he lived in as a child, artwork and artifacts from the Middle Ages, and the countryside where he traveled. There are also twelve full-color paintings depicting scenes from the life of Anselm. These were painted by Matt Abraxas and are truly beautiful.
Simonetta Carr’s writing style is warmly conversational. She carefully explains the challenges and nature of living in the Middle Ages, the political issues involved with the Church in Anselm’s day, and the theology Anselm addressed. Though the book is a biography, it is easily accessible to children. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say the book will appeal to 7-12 year-olds. I would opt to use this as a read-aloud for the younger ages. However, older children will enjoy the book. Mine are quite excited about it.
I believe that helping our children understand Christian history is important. I’m excited that Mrs. Carr is covering figures that are largely unaddressed in biographies for children. I really enjoyed Anselm of Canterbury by Simonetta Carr, and I look forward to collecting the rest of her books.
This book would coordinate well with studies involving:
The end of the Early Middle Ages
- The Beginning of the High Middle Ages
- The Politicization of the Church
- William the Conqueror, King William or King Henry I
Other books in Simonetta Carr’s line
- John Calvin (Christian Biographies for Young Readers)
- Augustine of Hippo (Christian Biographies for Young Readers)
- John Owen (Christian Biographies for Young Readers)
- Athanasius (Christian Biographies for Young Readers)
- Lady Jane Grey (Christian Biographies for Young Readers)
- Jonathan Edwards (Christian Biographies for Young Readers)
- John Knox (Christian Biographies for Young Readers)
Purchase Anselm of Canterbury at
- Amazon: Anselm of Canterbury (Christian Biographies for Young Readers)
- Christian Book: Anselm of Canterbury
More Books for 8-12 Year Olds Reviewed at Thinking Kids
- Augustine: The Truth Seeker by K.C. Murdarasi
- Guarding the Treasure: How God’s People Preserve God’s Word by Linda Finlayson
- Tough Questions About the Bible by Joel R. Beeke
- The New Astronomy Book by Danny R. Faulkner
- Growing Up God’s Way For Boys by Dr. Chris Richards and Dr. Liz Jones
- Growing Up God’s Way For Girls by Dr. Chris Richards and Dr. Liz Jones
Thinking Kids Book Review Indexes
Thinking Kids Pinterest Book Boards
- Christian Books for Preschoolers
- Christian Books for 4-7 Year Olds
- Christian Books for the Middle Grades
- Christian Books for Middle School
- Christian Books for High School
- Christian Books for Kids’ Devotions
- Christian Books about Parenting
~ Danika Cooley
Danika Cooley is the author of When Lightning Struck! The Story of Martin Luther (Fortress Press, 2015), Wonderfully Made (CF4K, 2016), and Bible Road Trip. Her work has been featured in internationally-recognized children's magazines over 150 times.