What Is God?

( 6 )

Overview

What is God? is an eloquent introduction to the ideas behind God and religion, and brings forward complex ideas in a way children will understand. It is written with a simple clarity and beautifully illustrated with just the right blend of seriousness and humor.

What is God? compares different religions — Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism — and their holy books, looks at misunderstandings and arguments among people of different ...

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Overview

What is God? is an eloquent introduction to the ideas behind God and religion, and brings forward complex ideas in a way children will understand. It is written with a simple clarity and beautifully illustrated with just the right blend of seriousness and humor.

What is God? compares different religions — Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism — and their holy books, looks at misunderstandings and arguments among people of different religions, and talks about praying as well as feeling connected to everything in the world.

If you want to talk about spirituality with a child, or introduce them to philosophy or religion, or just help them to begin to center themselves and their feelings about the world, this book is a great beginning.

The depth of meaning here defies easy description. Through Boritzer's clear text and Marantz's vivid and humorous illustrations, the reader does, in fact, receive an answer to the question, What is God? Full-color illustrations.

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Editorial Reviews

Santa Cruz Sentinel
This is a thoughtful introduction to the many meanings of God, to the world's religions.
— Christine Watson
Washington Post
A delightfully ecumenical book that answers questions straightforwardly and stresses the similarities of the world's religions in simple language. The color pictures are whimsical and sure to delight readers of all ages.
Cookie
How I wish I'd found this book ten years ago.
— Julia Glass
Cookie - Julia Glass
How I wish I'd found this book ten years ago.... When I stumbled on this book two months ago, I was thrilled. Critics might see it as a soft-core, everything-and-the-kitchen-sick approach to discussing religion, but that's exactly what I needed.
Santa Cruz Sentinel - Christine Watson
This is a thoughtful introduction to the many meanings of God, to the world's religions, and the author even gives a moment's thought to the many ways to pray.
Canadian Review of Materials, Vol. XVII, No. 27 - Lisa Case
Etan Boritzer provides young people with interesting, thoughtful perspectives to these types of questions about God... Many spiritual questions are pondered and are presented in a way that shows that...ultimately we all believe in the same things.... A great addition to any home or school library. Highly Recommended.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
About this provocative exploration of God in many places and many religions, PW said, ``Marantz's daring, highly stylized illustrations are full of character.'' Ages 6-12. (Aug.)
Children's Literature - Children's Literature
In this first of his "philosophical questions" books, Boritzer attempts to identify God in various cultures of the world. Boritzer tries to cover too broad a topic and leaves the reader with more questions than answers. (That really seems to be what he does best in all three of his books for children.) He briefly moves from the historical perspective of God into modern "feelings." Children would be easily confused by his shifting from one religious tradition to another while yet trying to show similarities among them. Adults would have to be strong in their own religious traditions in order to answer the questions that children would raise in the reading of this book. One would suspect that a reader from any one of the traditions could be irritated by the explanations and perhaps contradictions to standard beliefs and traditions. In fact, many would even question the title of the book, What Is God, even while recognizing that in some world cultures, God may be a "what," not a "who." 1991, Firefly Books, Ages 8 to 10, $14.95 and $6.95. Reviewer: Jenny B. Petty
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-- A provocative look at the concept of God that differs greatly from the Judeo-Christian idea of God as a person rather than as a vacuous feeling or entity. Major world religions are introduced in combination with the well-known teachers representing them (Moses, Jesus, Buddha, Mohammed), and whose words evolved into a library of Holy Books: the Bible, the Torah, the Koran, the Sutras, and the Vedas. Similarities are drawn among these faiths, showing common strands of truth and prayer as a universal tool of communication with God. Brief discussion is given to those believing in multiple gods as well as to those who experience religious persecution. Boritzer's attempt to synthesize and make accessible the many concepts of God results in the New Age concept/belief of pantheism. Marantz' Henrik Drescher-like illustrations are bold and bright watercolors, occupying full pages that face the poetic free-verse text. At times they serve a somewhat decorative purpose, but usually expand and elucidate elements in the narrative. The reasoning process used throughout may occasionally prove too abstract for many children, making this a picture book for older readers. It will be best utilized by religious-education teachers and parents. --Celia A. Huffman, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Cleveland
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780920668887
  • Publisher: Firefly Books, Limited
  • Publication date: 9/1/1990
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 247,897
  • Age range: 6 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.12 (d)

Meet the Author

Etan Boritzer grew up and went to school in New York City. At age eleven, Etan won the first prize for an essay he wrote on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. He has worked as journalist for several magazines and his poetry has been published in various European and American journals.

Etan's travels and studies in the Far East and other parts of the world, have led to his realization that the numerous and sometimes confusing concepts of God should be synthesized and made more accessible to children.

Etan Boritzer currently resides near Santa Monica, California, writing screenplays and more children's books.

Robbie Marantz is a freelance illustrator living in New York City. She grew up in Los Angeles and was educated at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. The majority of her work is editorial illustration for magazines and newspapers, including
Time Magazine, Business Week and Cosmopolitan. What is God? is Robbie's first children's book.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 4, 2005

    What is God?

    If you do not believe that there is only one true religion and want to teach your children who God is to different people/cultures, then this book is for you and your family. This book gives and easy to understand preview of different religions and how all of the people of the world may refer to God in different ways but we are all connected by the 'feeling' of love for whatever God/s we believe in.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 1, 2012

    Great book

    Very clear explanation of the feelings we feel about GOD. Easily understood.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2008

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    Posted April 23, 2009

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    Posted January 20, 2010

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    Posted November 30, 2008

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