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Posted November 6, 2010
Hurrah! Mr. Pipes, Annie, and Drew are back! We read and thoroughly enjoyed the three previous books in the Mr. Pipes series. In Mr. Pipes and the British Hymnmakers, Annie and Drew, who are in Olney, England, for the summer with their mother while she is doing research there, meet Mr. Pipes, an elderly organist, who takes them on all kinds of adventures and tells them about the great hymnwriters of Great Britain.
In Mr. Pipes and Psalms and Hymns of the Reformation, Mr. Pipes invites Annie and Drew to go on vacation the following summer with him in Europe where he discusses the hymnwriters of France, Germany, and Switzerland. In Mr. Pipes Comes to America, Mr. Pipes and his friend Dr. Dudley arrive to spend the holidays the following winter with Annie and Drew and their family in the United States and they learn about the hymnwriters of our own nation's past. In The Accidental Voyage, Mr. Pipes, Annie, and Drew are taking another European vacation, this time in the Mediterranean area, and they study about the Greek, Latin, and Celtic hymns of ancient and medieval times.
All these hymn stories are told in the framework of a very interesting and exciting fictional plot. It is likely that those associated with churches of Christ are not as familiar with the songs mentioned in this latest installment because very few of them have been in our hymnbooks, but they deserve more knowledge and use among us than our hymnbook editors have seen fit to give them. One may not necessarily agree with all the theological statements and implications that are found in the book, nor with every opinion about hymns expressed by Mr. Pipes, but these books are fun to read and contain a lot of really helpful information for those who are interested in the history of hymns.