Adam and His Kin by Ruth Beechick (published by Mott Media, 1990) is titled to be a book telling a narrative story of the early patriarchs of the Earth, beginning with Adam and going through Abraham. Unfortunately, it really feels like a paraphrase retelling with very little narrative.
It seems unfair to say: there was a narrative line going through the book that gave a little bit of personality to each of the patriarchs from Adam through his descendants, but the emphasis seemed on strange things. For example, there was emphasis on the knowledge of the stars and the things they learned through it, and the calendar years that they measured. There was emphasis on the writing of the record and the study of various pursuits.
The end of the book has appendices with the King James version of Bible text so that those reading the novel can go back and look at what the Bible had to say. Also, there’s a section for further research and further learning, which is geared towards maybe high school kids and what they might be interested in studying, such as the Sumerians or the mythological traditions and how they might possibly relate back to the actual biblical record. These are interesting points.
Is it supposed to be a middle grade book? The emphasis was too detailed and the lack of dialogue would not keep their attention. A high school book or a book for adult? It’s just somewhat boring. The book was interesting; it just was disappointing to me because I could not ever imagine reading it with my children and having them feel engaged and interested. I also couldn’t imagine handing it to an older child and expecting them to keep reading on their own.
I really wish I could find a book that looked at the perspective of someone going from hunting and gathering to farming as a new thing and what it would have been like in those early days. I wish Adam and His Kin had been a book like that, providing a unique perspective on the early days of our Earth and how civilization developed, something that would be more interesting than Ruth Beechick’s offering, which unfortunately did not engage me very much.