REVIEWS - Curriculum, books, media, homeschool products

Christian Heroes: Then & Now Review

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

Want to know a sad but true secret about me that I’m almost too embarrassed to share? You may even doubt if we’re really homeschoolers if I reveal this, but there’s a reason I chose to review C.S. Lewis: Master Storyteller from the Christian Heroes Then and Now series.

What is Christian Heroes: Then & Now?

Christian Heroes Then and Now is a series of biographies by YWAM Publishing that chronicle the lives of men and women who shaped history and the story of their dedication to serve God. The writers, Janet and Geoff Benge are a husband/wife writing team with more than thirty years of writing experience. They write with such attention to detail, combined with adventure and history. The books in this series are recommended for ages 10 and up – adults also love them. YWAM books are popular with people of Christian faith, and are used by Christian families and many Christian schools. I’ve been to several homeschool conventions, and YWAM is one of the busiest booths in the entire vendor hall! People really love the intriguing stories of positive role-models and their stories of how God has used them in a variety of circumstances.

C.S. Lewis: Master Storyteller

C.S. Lewis: Master Storyteller tells the life story of Clive Staples Lewis, born on November 29, 1898 in Northern Ireland. He insisted everyone call him Jack since he was two years old. “Jack” would go on to write over 30 books, translated in over 30 languages, and have sold millions of copies. Lewis is also recognized as one of the most influential Christian apologists of his time. C.S. Lewis: Master Storyteller takes the reader through a detailed timeline of Lewis’ life beginning with his childhood days. His love for Irish myths and other tales fed his imagination, and as soon as Jack learned to write, he was recording stories. His brother, Warren, shared in Jack’s love of the imaginary world. The boys were three and a half years apart and the very best of friends.

We read of his days in and out of boarding schools and colleges, and his time on the bloody battlefield during both World Wars. His growing friendship with J. R. R. Tolkien had an impact on Jack’s belief in God, and Jack no longer considered himself an atheist. He even went from just believing in God to believing in Christ. He was 33 when he became a Christian. The book goes on to detail more of his life as a writer, a radio star, and author of the world renowned series that came to be known as The Chronicles of Narnia

C.S. Lewis Study Guide

We chose just to read C.S. Lewis: Master Storyteller for total enjoyment, as it is probably one of the last opportunities I have left to read aloud with my teenagers. There is an accompanying unit study that I would have used had we needed to do a solid lit study. The C.S. Lewis Unit Study Guide can be used as an aid to reinforce what’s between the pages of the biography. Unit studies really give the teacher and student(s) an in-depth lesson. Just from one book, there are so many areas of learning with these studies such as: history, geography, essay and creative writing, reading comprehension, public speaking, drama and art. Unit studies are excellent for a variety of learning styles and ages. If I could go back, our entire homeschooling journey would have been based on unit studies.

A sample of the unit study guide

What we Thought Christian Heroes Now & Then: C.S. Lewis

So far, we are enjoying the book, and I wouldn’t expect anything different from YWAM Publishing. I will note that this particular book is written from a slightly different angle than most of their books, which are written from the subject’s perspective. There is a brief explanation of this at the end of the book. Because we are reading the book as a read-aloud, it’s been a bit slower, as work and school schedules with teens do not always coincide. We do plan to finish in the next week or two, because we are just getting to the backstories of the famous books Lewis has written.

This is the part where I should reveal the secret I mentioned at the beginning of this review: We have never read any of The Chronicles of Narnia series. Gasp! It’s true. We did watch The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, but they were very young, nor do I remember much of it myself. They do remember the sampling of Turkish Delight I bought to eat while watching the movie. I know, most homeschoolers would totally discredit me entirely for this little secret, but I saw this quote, and …..well, I’m going to start reading fairy tales again!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Of course C.S. Lewis: Master Storyteller gets 5 stars, just like Heroes of History- Orville Wright would have if I was giving stars back when I first reviewed YWAM with the Review Crew. That’s still one of my all-time favorites, so check it out too! Also, check out all the different titles the Review Crew got a chance to read with their families by clicking the banner below!

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