Day 6: National Geographic Kids’ Who’s Who in the Bible

HeaderHello everyone! This is Ivy returning with a review to kick off day 6 of 12 Days of Christmas gifts.  Be sure to check out previous posts to if you missed the last few days.

This time, I am presenting a gift for those who want to enrich a child’s knowledge of the Bible, particularly those in it.  National Geographic Kids’ Who’s Who in the Bible will do just that.

This book is very well organized.  Scanning through the table of contents, all the figures with at least slight prominence in the Bible are there and organized in the order they come in the Bible.  That way families can go through the Bible and use this book to further deepen everyone’s knowledge and understanding of what they are reading.  Though it is geared toward children, I think this is something families can enjoy together.  The colour scheme also helps organize the book.  The portion on those from the Old Testament has yellow tinted wood as the background while the New Testament portion has a blue green background which I would imagine is supposed to be water.  Between major sections there is are two pages of general background information which includes a timeline and little blurbs on major events or people.  The background of each of these pages has a background unique to the rest of the book.

The pages with details on specific people contains a summary of what happens to them as the focal point, but it also includes a few facts on their name.  There is also usually an extra fact about the person or the picture of them.  There is a glossary and index at the back which is useful, but I find the transition between St. Paul and the glossary to be rather abrupt.  I would have liked a bit of an outro; some sort of buffer between the two.

This book has a hard cover.  It resembles stained glass and in a few of the panels there are pictures of different people from the Bible.  I think it reflects the contents of the book well, but I don’t understand why there are two pictures of Moses.  I would have switched one of them out for someone else, considering how many there are to choose from.  The back has a handful of interesting facts which I think will capture the attention of many people.  The end pages are a vibrant shade of peacock blue which works well with the title and touches of blue on the cover.  They are well adhered to the cover.  I do find it strange that they are a slightly thinner than the regular pages; hardly noticeable.  Usually end pages are the same thickness as the other pages if not thicker.  The pages are heavy weight and glossy.  The print quality if excellent – the text is easy to read, and lines are crisp.  The first page has a little line drawing of a dove which feels a little out of place considering how full the other pages are.  The next page is when the book officially starts.  The is a painting which fills the span of two pages – a stark contrast to the previous page.  The picture is well chosen so that the title can still be clearly seen.  The set up of the remaining pages is consistent.  The pictures, as states on the back cover, are all classical and relevant to the information provided.  They are of various media which my inner artist appreciates.

Overall, I think National Geographic Kid’s Who’s Who in the Bible is a way of condensing the Bible from a different perspective.  It is definitely geared toward children as those who are older may already know the bulk of the given information, but it isn’t really a good option for very young children either, for they may not be able to grasp what they are reading.  It does have background knowledge which is not otherwise included in the Bible itself and the art is beautiful.  I give this book:

★★★1/2             3.5/5

3.5 stars.  I cannot say I would eagerly pay $14.99 US for it, especially since it is $19.99 CAD.  That being said, by no means is it a waste of money.  I think many will enjoy it.

You may purchase a copy here.

See you next time with 12 Days of Christmas Gifts!


Review: Lives of the Saints Two-Volume Boxed Set by Catholic Book Publishing Corporation

Lives of the Saint Two-Volume Boxed Set Review

Promised two posts ago, I would review two products generously sent to me by The Catholic Company. One of the two products were reviewed in the last post, the Revised Standard Version Catholic Bible-Compact Edition by Oxford University Press. Today, I will take the time to review the Lives of the Saints Two-Volume Boxed Set by Catholic Book Publishing Corporation.

Upon opening the contents from the package, I admired the fact that the Lives of the Saints boxed was not that large. One volume would easily fit inside a bag, purse or backpack and bring to work. I brought the full boxed set to the Steubenville Conference. Even though free time was very little, I spent sometime late during the night reading some Lives of the Saints from volume two. The set easily fit into my backpack, still leaving a lot of room for other necessities.

Why two volumes? I have taken a look through both volumes. I found the volume one contained the Lives of many saints which I have known like St. Benedict, St. Dominic… However, volume two seemed a little more interesting. According to the product description on The Catholic Company, “It contains a new series of lives of saintly men and women for each day of the year – many of them newly canonized or beatified.” There were saints whom I have not even heard of before and it really interested me. Volume two was an “add on” to volume one and also written by a different author.

Looking at Volume 1: As mentioned above, volume 1 seemed to contain many of the more common saints. In addition, there is also sections for special days in the Catholic Church such as Christmas or the feast of the Presentation of The Lord. Volume 1 was written by Rev. Hugo Hoever, O.O.Cist., Ph.D. This volume contains and Imprimatur by Patrick J. Sheridan D.D., the Vicar General of the Archdiocese of New York the time this volume was published. Each saint contains his/her feast day, patron, approximately one – two page biography and a short prayer. Volume 1 has a blue cover.

Looking at Volume 2: Volume 2 as mentioned before, is like an “add-on” to volume 1. It contains many Saints and Blesseds that I have never known before such as St. Hermenegild, St. Victor Maurus. This volume was written by Rev. Thomas J. Donaghy and bears an Imprimatur by Patrick J. Sheridan D.D., the Vicar General of the Archdiocese of New York the time this volume was published. Special in volume 2, accompanying the prayer and biography of each Saint, there is a reflection which helps think deeper about the Saint’s life. Volume 2 has a maroon cover.

Both volumes contain more than 365 saints (at least one for each day of the year and volume 1 even contains a saint on Feb. 29!) which helps one to live and grow devotions to the saints all year long. Why more than 365 saints? I have found that some days contain more than one saint. In total, there would be more than 730 saints’ biography in this boxed set. If you looked at the images, you must of had noticed the illustrations. These images are a black and white version of the illustrations from Fr. Lovasik’s Picture Book of Saints, also sold on The Catholic CompanyI know someone who has copy of the book and I also have the Vietnamese version of the book too. I really enjoy the illustrations as they bring the saints “to life”. Both volumes have a sturdy hardcover. The product description says, “cloth cover” and I am still questioning that as the cover does not feel like cloth at all.  However, no ribbons are attached which would be convenient. The sturdy slipcase is great as it protects the two volumes very well.

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Product: Lives of the Saints Two-Volume, Boxed Set

Publisher: Catholic Book Publishing Corporation

Format: Print, volume 1 has a blue cloth cover, volume 2 has a maroon cloth cover, white paper with red-orange edges.

Dimensions per volume (approximate):  11 cm x 15.5 cm x 3 cm

Dimensions of slipcase (approximate): 12.75 cm x 16.25 cm x 6.5 cm

Imprimatur: Yes, on both volumes

ISBN Volume 1: 978-0-89942-870-3

ISBN Volume 2:  978-0-89942-875-8

ISBN Boxed Set: 978-0-89942-876-5


  • Both volumes come in a sturdy slip case
  • Two hard cover volumes
  • Very clear layout and font
  • Red-orange edges (decorative feature?)
  • Illustrations in black and white
  • Each volume is small enough to slip into your backpack/purse
  • A short biography and prayer to each saint during the year
  • Volume 2 contains a reflection after each biography
  • Each Saint’s biography is 1-2 pages in length
  • Very easy to understand
  • Affordable


  • No ribbon marker
  • Images not in colour (not a big deal to me)

On “The Catholic Man’s” Scale

★★★★★ 5/5

I really love this Lives of the Saint’s Two-Volume boxed set. I have considered purchasing a Lives of Saints book from several places. However, being given an offer of two Catholic books from The Catholic Company, I chose this product as it suited my needs. I would recommend this Lives of the Saint’s. This would make a perfect gift, personally I don’t think for a First Communicant, but certainly for Confirmation. Its presentation and content is amazing.

You may purchase this Lives of the Saint’s Two-Volume boxed set at The Catholic Company, inexpensively priced for only $17.95!  

** Again, I sincerely thank The Catholic Company for offering me two books to review on The Catholic Man Reviews and give my honest reviews! 

Services Review: The Catholic Company

The Catholic Company

The Catholic Company,  according to their website is a “Catholic Store, Religious Store, Catholic Bookstore”. I contacted them about three weeks ago about enrolling into their reviewer’s program but sadly, they have discontinued it. However, the very kind staff offered me two books that I promised to review here on cclogo_2016. I found out choosing two books from a large online Catholic store was very difficult because there were so many books that I liked! When I go to Catholic bookstores such as Pauline’s Books and Media, I often spend at least one hour there, often coming out with a discounted book or prayer card. In the end, I managed to choose two magnificent books.

When I go to Catholic bookstores such as Pauline’s Books and Media, I often spend at least one hour there, often coming out with a discounted book or prayer card. In the end, I managed to choose two magnificent books. First was the RSV-Catholic Bible-Compact Edition published by Oxford University Press. I have considered The Ignatius Bible-RSV 2nd Edition (Softcover). These two bibles were almost the same in dimensions. However, the Oxford one was hardcover (I always prefer hardcover books over softcovers) and I wanted to see how a non-Catholic publisher published a Catholic Bible.  I will be going to the Steubenville Toronto Conference this weekend so this will be a great chance to try out this Compact Bible. The second book is actually two books but one item. It was the Lives of the Saints 2-Volume Boxed Set published by the Catholic Book Publishing Corporation, a very popular publisher of Catholic books. I will review these two products I received from The Catholic Company in a later post. The RSV-Catholic Bible-Compact Edition I will likely to review next week after I come back to the Steubenville Conference. The Lives of the Saints 2-Volume Boxed Set I will review sometime in August. Today, I only want to focus on The Catholic Company‘s service.

20160719_181851I requested my items via an e-mail conversation on July 7, 2016. The staff notified me that the Lives of the Saints 2-Volume Boxed Set was temporarily out of stock, which they told me “may take up to several weeks” for it to be back in stock. (Probably my mistake that I did not check the site to be prepared…) Therefore, I thought that my order would not come to my doorstep until probably August. On the night of July 18, 2016, I checked the website and saw that the item was back in stock. Curious of how the order was going, I emailed the staff and asked about the progress. The staff replied a couple hours on the same day after I sent the email. To my surprise, on that same day in the afternoon, after my afternoon walk, I saw a package on my front door. I thought that it was for someone else in my household. It was not, it was from The Catholic Company. I was thrilled to see the contents of the package.

I was a bit tired after my afternoon walk. But, I just wanted to open the package and see the items that I have requested. I took a knife and carefully opened the package. First, I saw a rolled up large sheet of brown kraft paper to stabilize the contents of the box. Then, each item I requested was carefully put into a plastic bubble wrap package. I was surprised by how much care was taken into packing the contents. They even including a neat “BELIEVE” decal with my order.

On The Catholic Man’s Scale (services version)

Customer Service (via e-mail): ★★★★★

Duration of order to delivery: ★★★★★ (not long as expected!)

Staff: ★★★★★ (such kind and polite staff!)

Care in packaging: ★★★★★ 

Trustworthiness: ★★★★★

Items arrived as expected: ★★★★★

There was nothing negative I could say about The Catholic Company! My family has bought some things online (electronics, school supplies…) and some took long to come to our doorstep and some came to us in very “loose” packaging. If someone asks me, “Where is the best Catholic Online store?”. My answer would be, “The Catholic Company”.

I appreciate The Catholic Company‘s great work in serving Catholics “because faith matters”! Again, I thank The Catholic Company for giving me the chance to review your services and two of your products on The Catholic Man Reviews. This is a big motivation for me to continue The Catholic Man Reviews blog. 

My two posts on RSV-Catholic Bible-Compact Edition and Lives of the Saints 2-Volume Boxed Set  will be the next two blog posts on The Catholic Man Reviews! Stay tuned for these reviews!