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One Man in the Middle reviews ‘Deborah and Jael’

One Man in the Middle reviews ‘Deborah and Jael’
Rob Allwright

Rob Allwright

Founder / Reviewer for One Man in the Middle

Rob Allwright shares his honest review of Lucy Rycroft's latest illustrated children's story, 'Deborah and Jael'

Rob begins by introducing Lucy Rycroft as an author whom some Christian families may be familiar with from her blog called Desertmum on her website The Hope Filled Family.

“On her site she talks about the challenges of parenting and with four children which include adopted twins; you would imagine she would know what she’s doing when it comes to writing an engaging picture book for younger readers on one of the lesser-known stories in the Bible.”

Noting that even many Christian adults may not be overly familiar with the Biblical story, he sets the scene of the ‘blood-thirsty‘ time in Biblical history, where Israel was experiencing much opposition due to their disobedience.

“King Jabin had cruelly oppressed the Israelites for 20 years and Sisera his commander ruled with displays of power, so much we are told that he had 900 iron chariots. However when God hears His people He uses two women to overthrow the army and give Israel their freedom.”

Rob speaks about his own memories of reading Biblical children’s stories and their tendency to omit many of ‘the grizzly bits with blood and passion‘. He argues the benefits of including these parts of the story and states,

“If kids can cope with Horrible Histories then they can start to cope with some of the more gruesome elements of the Bible.”

He also acknowledges Deborah and Jael as a brave choice for 5-7 years olds.

The review continues with further detail of the story itself and comments on the thoughtfully added illustrations.

“The story skips the gruesome bits of the story but there are definitely hints throughout from the illustrator Beth Aulton and I do love the picture with Jael innocently untying the tent peg while Sisera enjoys his drink!”

Rob writes about the contrasting end of the book, which is full of celebration and happiness.

“The book finishes with a couple of sentences about us being God’s friends and just as Deborah and Jael were willing to be used by God, we can be too.”

He points out the encouragement that the story holds for young girls as they read about the way God used two women as friends, but also notes that this is a book that boys will appreciate as they get older and start to ask questions.


Click here to read the full review.

If you are looking for a different Bible story that you don’t often find in the children’s section then this is definitely a good purchase

Rob Allwright

Founder / Reviewer, One Man in the Middle

About the Book


Evil King Jabin has been in power for 20 years – but who is brave enough to defeat him? Deborah and Jael are two strong women. They are ready to stand up and use their bravery and wisdom to help their people and serve God.

In this poetic retelling of the well-known Bible story, found in Judges, children will discover how God uses His friends to bring peace and defeat evil.

Also in the media

Honest Conversation Reviews ‘Deborah and Jael’

Honest Conversation Reviews ‘Deborah and Jael’

According to a recent review by Honest Conversation, two great strengths of the illustrated children's book Deborah and Jael by Lucy Rycroft are (a) it is "a lesser known Bible story"; and (b) it is "one about women". Annie writes: "I love how the story focuses on...




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