365 Classic Bedtime Bible Stories: Inspired by Jesse Lyman Hurlbut’s Story of the Bible, Barbour Publishing, Inc., 2017.

Rev. Jesse Lyman Hurlbut (1843-1930) was a clergyman of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Born in New York City, Hurlbut pastored churches in New Jersey including in Newark, Montclair, Paterson, Plainfield, Hoboken, Morristown, Orange, and Bloomfield.

Hurlbut was a contributor to the Sunday school and tract work of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He served as secretary of the Epworth League from 1889-1892. He also served as a District Superintendent of the Newark District.

Hurlbut was a prolific writer.  His Story of the Bible was written to help children become familiar with the stories of the Bible. These retelling of Old and New Testament stories were written for children ages six and older.

A New Version

In the new 365 Classic Bedtime Bible Stories, the publisher reimagines Hurlbut’s classic work. In this version, the stories are accompanied by bright, colorful illustrations from Alessia Girasole. These illustrations fill the page, making them engaging for young children.

This is a solid introduction for children three and older to the stories and the story flow of the Bible.   For those who are unfamiliar with the Bible, this collection would be a good introduction.

But Better?

The digital review copy I received only took me from Creation to the death of Joseph. I did not get to see how they handled anything beyond the book of Genesis. For a book billed as “Classic Bible Bedtime Stories,” I’d be concerned reading some of these stories to my three-year-old at bedtime.

For example, I’m not too sure about reading about Cain murdering his brother Abel as a bedtime story. And some parts of Joseph’s epic story may be too much at bedtime. At times the story is just the right length for toddlers. But, most of the time, the stories tend to be a little bit longer than most Bible story books for toddlers. A plus is that the illustrations are so good, it may hold the toddler’s attention when the story may go too long.

For me, a Bible storybook calling itself a “bedtime” Bible should be cautious of the stories it includes for children at bedtime. As an introduction to the Bible and even as a tool in the Christian Educator’s toolbox, I would say consider this volume. But as a bedtime storybook collection, I’ll pass.

You can purchase your own copy by clicking on the image below.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a digital review copy.