From bibles to bears!
My thanks to Richard Bauckham (Professor of New Testament Studies and Wardlaw Professor, in St Mary's College) for having kindly sent me a signed copy of his new children’s book, The MacBears of Bearloch (Aultbea Publishing Company). As a friend suggested in personal e-mail correspondence: ‘Bauckham should win some kind of award for being “the most diverse Christian scholar on the planet”’!
I plan to enjoy a few evenings this week reading it together with my wife; it shall make a delightful change from my usual evening reading! I’m really looking forward to starting it actually – not only children can enjoy children’s books!
I’ll let Richard explain what it is about. He prepared the following text originally for the St Andrews University staff magazine:
The story is a humorous fantasy about a family of bears and their friends who live by a secret loch in the forgotten lands of the north, a country rather like Scotland. There is grumpy Grampa MacBear, reliable Mother MacBear, and her four 'bearns' (as bear cubs are known in Bearloch): sensible Duff, imaginative Beth, mischievous Tosh, and Baby Brother. The adventures include islands that move, a mysterious horse, a haiku contest, the oldest creature from the depths of the ocean, and much more.The MacBears of Bearloch is available at £4.99 from Amazon here.
Richard said: “I wrote the kind of children's book I enjoy reading. It's a bit different from the kinds that are mostly being written now. It's a fantasy that is not a struggle between good and evil, and not about witches and magicians or kings and queens. It is also, I hope, funnier.
“The children's books I'm most conscious of being influenced by are the wonderful Moomin books of Finnish author Tove Jansson. I hope it has something of the spirit of the Moomins. Bearloch is related to Scotland much as Moominvalley is related to Finland.
“It was tremendous fun to write, and a refreshing change from most other
things I do!”
See also here for another theologian’s comment on Richard’s book. Mike Bird writes: ‘Your kids will love it! It’s a good way to get them exposed to NT scholars at a young age’!