I am pleased to review a book written by a friend of mine, June Paul.
A Stable Birth: A Story About the Birth of Jesus Christ is a short book that retells the birth of Jesus in story form. Author June Paul engages the reader with dialog and imagery as she has the characters of Joseph, Mary and the Innkeeper and his wife talk with one another as Paul imagined they might have done in the birth and aftermath of the birth of Jesus in a stable. The book’s title suggests the image of the stable birthplace and the stability of the character of Joseph, who responds to the awkward situation of being Jesus’ earthly but not biological father.
The book is organized in six chapters, each defining one aspect of the holy family’s visit to Bethlehem to take part in a census. The action is based on the birth stories told in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, and it reminds one of scenes in a drama, each building on the preceding chapter. The characters discuss the birth of the holy child, whom angels have told them will be the Savior of the world, with animation and some repetition as they ponder what it means for them.
Author Paul brings the biblical story to life in a good page turner. She also includes questions for discussion for readers to use for education and formation purposes. This is a book for people who might have wondered what it was like to be Mary and Joseph during and after Jesus’ birth. It is for people with curiosity about the shepherds who came to see Jesus, and even for those who might have thought about an innkeeper who does not appear in the Gospel but is important to the telling of Paul’s story.
The book is available at Amazon.com in paperback. This review is of the revised edition.