I’d like to thank Fortress Press for giving me a set of four books by Tim Dowley for review, and another set for the giveaway!
Fortress Press has a number of great resources available for students from Bible and Christian History author Tim Dowley. I’m excited to be able to introduce four of them to you. These are great resources to have in your family’s library, and I’ll go through them one at a time. The giveaway has ended, but through 7/31/16, you’ll find these four resources on sale for Kindle!
Atlas of the European Reformations by Tim Dowley ~ Retail $24
The Atlas of the European Reformations is an interesting resource. I’ve been reading through it, and I really like the way it’s set up. There are four sections: Before the Reformation, Reformation, Catholic Reform and Counter-Reformation, and Early Modern Europe. I like the fact that students get an overview of what led to the Reformations, what occurred during the Reformations, and what happened after.
Each of the 60 maps has a brief overview with it. The maps are fascinating, as they really communicate the scope of each topic being discussed. Students will learn about important figures in the Reformation period. They will also learn about movements, conflicts, and how the Reformations affected different nations.
The narrative is careful to avoid bias, and both the reform of the Roman Catholic Church and the Protestant Reformation are covered. For a well-rounded study, historical fiction and biographies will fill out your study of the Reformations, but this is a great overview of the period, and unlike anything I’ve seen. I like the fact that the Atlas covers the Catholic reform and missions as well. I want my boys to know about that part of history.
This is a paperback book, but it’s a really thick, glossy paperback, kind of like a paperback/hardcover hybrid.
Just a note: I’m writing a discussion guide for the Atlas of the European Reformations for Fortress Press, and they’ve kindly agreed to let me share it with my readers as well. Subscribers will get an email when it’s ready to download!
The Student Bible Atlas: Revised Edition by Tim Dowley ~ Retail $12.99
The Student Bible Atlas: Revised Edition is a great, cost effective resource for students of the Bible. The Revised Edition is much the same as the earlier version, however, the 29 maps have been digitally re-mastered and re-checked. Fortress Press has also added a number of really nice photos to the maps to add context and interest. My boys will love those.
Note: The Student Bible Atlas is used in Bible Road Trip for the Upper Grammar level (grades 4-6 ). It’s clear and simple for kids getting a handle on the geography of the biblical story.
Introduction to the History of Christianity: Second Edition by Tim Dowley ~ Retail $55
Introduction to the History of Christianity: Second Edition is well laid out, with colorful sidebars containing short biographies and articles about different movements. In preparing for this overview and giveaway, I didn’t have the time to read all 616 pages of the book, but I did read sections throughout.
I’m pleased to see that Tim Dowley stands for the Bible as God’s inspired Word. That’s always the first thing I look for when evaluating a Christian history text. Mr. Dowley speaks of the damage wrought by modern day biblical criticism, while also explaining the good that has come from it.
This looks to be an excellent overview of the history of Christianity for students. Tim Dowley really focuses on movements and ideas (though he does have plenty of biographies of Christian leaders!), which will help students really understand how the Christian Church has been shaped and formed, as well as the theological attacks it has withstood (and in some cases, succumbed to). I’m especially pleased with the breadth of information on the Early Church. I’ll be using this with my boys as we work through Cobblestone Path.
We’ll continue to use historical fiction and biographies to deepen our studies, but I’m thrilled to have this excellent overview to give our boys a good understanding of the broader history of the Church.
The book has the same really thick paperback cover that the Atlas of the European Reformations has, with beautiful, glossy pages.
Amazon: Introduction to the History of Christianity ($7.99 on Kindle through 7/31/16)
Christian Book: Introduction to the History of Christianity: Second Edition
Christian Music: A Global History by Tim Dowley ~ Retail $35
I am really excited about this volume! I haven’t seen anything like it. Christian History: A Global History progresses chronologically to the present day, then explores modern musical genres in the last portion of the book. The narrative is wonderfully readable, broken up by subheadings and sidebars. There are twenty-one chapters in total, covering music from the Jewish, pre-Christ tradition all the way to the contemporary Christian music industry.
I spent a lot of money on our current history of music review, and I feel like it is… really boring. I’m so excited to use this with my boys, and I’m thrilled that it focuses on Christian music. I want my kids to have an understanding of the history of the Church, and this is a great tool to help with that goal! Don’t be surprised if you see music increasingly showing up in the remaining 5 volumes of Cobblestone Path.
There’s lots of color and great images in this 263 page volume, and the book is hardcover with glossy pages. (For someone visual like me, that’s very helpful.) I love that Tim Dowley covered the history of Christian music from a global perspective. This book will fit perfectly with either a chronological study of history, or with a unit study approach.
I’m really pleased with all four of these volumes from Tim Dowley and Fortress Press.
You can read portions of the first 8 chapters of When Lightning Struck! right here!
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~ 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.