Off the Shelf: Eleanor the Hippo Learns to Tell the Truth

Books that have caught my eye.

Eleanor the Hippo Learns to Tell the Truth

Written and Illustrated by Andy McGuire

Andy McGuire, the creator of Remy the Rhino Learns Patience and A Special Fish for Jonah, releases a new book for kids ages 3-8 about Eleanor, a young hippo with a knack for telling a pack of lies. This delightful story combined with captivating art illustrates how gossip is hurtful and why honesty frees us to be ourselves and to love others like God does.

My friend Andy McGuire, an editor at Bethany House, has put together a stunning children’s book that I love. The whimsical, full-color illustrations are gorgeous, and this surprising morality tale works on a couple of levels, for kids and their parents. I just wish my own children were still young enough to get the full benefit.

One quibble: On the back cover, the perhaps overeager marketing copy claims, “… the truth is-surprise!-so much more fun than lies!” Actually, of course, this is not always true, which is one reason lies can be so attractive. We tell the truth not because it is fun, but because it reflects God’s character, whatever the cost. I’m glad the book itself doesn’t really say that truth is always fun. It certainly wasn’t for Eleanor.

Perhaps that kind of lesson is a bit over the heads of this book’s intended audience, who will have plenty to think about in any case.

About Stan Guthrie

Stan Guthrie is an editor at large for Christianity Today magazine and for the Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview. His latest book is God's Story in 66 Verses. He also is author of All that Jesus Asks: How His Questions Can Teach and Transform Us, Missions in the Third Millennium: 21 Key Trends for the 21st Century, and A Concise Guide to Bible Prophecy. He is co-author of The Sacrament of Evangelism. Besides authoring, writing, and editing books, Stan is a literary agent, bringing together good authors, good books, and good publishers. Stan writes the monthly Priorities colum for BreakPoint.org. He has appeared on National Public Radio's €œTell Me More,€ WGN's Milt Rosenberg program, and many Christian shows, including The Eric Metaxas Show and Moody Radio'€™s €œNew Day Florida.€ A licensed minister and an inspirational speaker, he served as moderator for the Christian Book Expo panel discussion, Does the God of Christianity Exist, and What Difference Does It Make?
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