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The Faithgirlz! Bible    by Nancy N. Rue order for
Faithgirlz! Bible
by Nancy N. Rue
Order:  USA  Can
Zonderkidz, 2006 (2006)
* *   Reviewed by Anise Hollingshead

The Faithgirlz! Bible is designed for young girls ages 8-12, or tweens. The translation used is Today's New International Version, which is a new translation similar to the New International Version - which has actually been around for a while, now. The basic differences between the two consist of using more precise gender terms like human beings where previously the word man was used for both women and men; the greater use of Messiah in place of Christ and substitutions for the frequent use of the term Saints in the New Testament.

The format of The Faithgirlz! Bible is a landscape print layout, rather than a portrait setting. As with most children's and teen bibles, there are various interactive asides in the form of quizzes, study questions, what-if situations and also a few journaling prompts. In the book of Genesis, for instance, girls are asked if there is any Adam and Eve in them, to get them to think on the fact that yes, it could easily have been them in the garden eating that apple. Other asides offer possible explanations to sometimes puzzling stories in the bible, like why did God get angry about the Tower of Babel, and did people really live to be more than 900 years old?

There are already several bibles available now that are targeted toward this age group, but if it's a good version, there is always room for one more, as girls really like to be trendy. Faithgirlz! Bible is a faithful rendition of the bible. The preface that accompanies all TNIV translations from the Committee on Bible Translation, which is composed of biblical scholars from different academic settings, explains the translation into more modern language, while making it clear that they believe the Bible is the infallible and authoritative Word of God.

I thought that the questions, quizzes and explanations offered for Genesis were generally good, but I did have a slight problem with one of the first 'Oh, I get it!' questions which discusses whether people back then really lived to be 900 years old. There are three possible explanations given in this brief discussion, one of which is that this could be a euphemism for 'a very long time'. (The other two explanations take the age literally.) This kind of answer is confusing to children, who are apt to think that if one statement isn't literal in the Bible, then maybe none are. Also, each of these long ages is a different number, and therefore logically would not be a general euphemism, unlike the case that some people make for a possible euphemistic use of the number 40 for many major events in the Bible. This was the only time when this type of solution was offered, though, and the rest of the features offered great explanations to thoughtful questions.

I really like this tween version, and actually prefer it to Revolve, the teen girl version of the Bible that is designed to look like a magazine. Revolve is a good bible, but it's almost too colorful and busy, and could be distracting. Faithgirlz! has added features, but they're kept to a minimum and aren't intrusive. The colors are also less vibrant and vivid, and don't distract from the surrounding text. The landscape format appears to be bigger than most bibles, and I'm not sure of the type of binding, but the content is great. The Faithgirlz! Bible is a good choice for young girls.

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