Book Review: The Midwife of Bethlehem

For many the story of the Nativity is told simply enough in the 2nd Chapter of Luke in the New Testament. But lacking in that telling are illustrations that children love to see when hearing a story. Also missing is an eye-witness account of events that help translate feelings of what transpired. A new children’s book by Shad Driggs titled The Midwife of Bethlehem attempts to bridge those gaps.

As with all children’s books, the adult reader has to get past what is known in a common story. The Nativity is a common story. The Midwife of Bethlehem is a fictional accounting of that story. So it feels a little odd to read a story that quotes scripture but strays in a few of the details.

It tells the story from the perspective of two women who live in the ancient city of Bethlehem and work daily as midwives. Early in the story they muse about the likelihood of being present when the Messiah is born because they know from scripture that Bethlehem is to be the place of His birth. As their little town fills with strangers coming to pay taxes they notice a woman “great with child” and just know it will fall to them to be there when she delivered.

Within days it happens and they observe right away how the birth of this child is both the same and different from any other child. It is their observations and feelings that make this a worthwhile read for both parent and child.

The Midwife of Bethlehem is filled with good intentions. The illustrations strongly support the story line and give a wonderful visual of the backdrop for the birth of Jesus Christ.

Some language may be beyond the comprehension of some young children — the mention of contractions, for example. But overall the story is gently and tastefully told and the focus is squarely on the miraculous birth of The Baby, as it should be.

The Midwife of Bethlehem is a good companion to traditional Biblical story telling of the Nativity that many engage in each Christmas.

The book is now available on Amazon.

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