The Christian Year in Story: A Round Up of Saints Books

By Lisa DeGroot

Editor's Note: In preparation for and celebration of All Saints' Day on November 1, we offer this list of recommended resources for children of all ages.



Toddlers/Pre-Readers


Cloud of Witnesses: A Child's First Book of Saints

Written by: Katie Warner

Illustrated by: Meg Whalen

A perfect introduction to the saints for very young children, each page contains a prayer or quote from a well-known saint. With bright and colorful illustrations, children will enjoy this sweet book.



My First Book of Saints

Written by: Kathleen Muldoon and Susan Wallace

Illustrated by: Tom Kinarney and Patricia Mattozzi

In this easy-to-read book, sixty-two saints are compiled for young children to learn about. Each saint has an illustration, biography, and short prayer or illustration of their holiness.


Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland

Written and Illustrated by: Tomie dePaola

Tomie dePaola's signature illustrations and easy to understand story-telling will captivate young readers.


[Editor’s Note: Andrea Perkins previously reviewed dePaola’s Mary, the Mother of Jesus here.]


Early Readers

Loyola Kids Book of Saints

Written by: Amy Welborn

Illustrated by: Ansgar Holmberg, C.S.J.

Perfect for children wanting to learn more, this book categorizes saints by specific character attributes. Each entry gives a basic overview of the life of the saint, including at least one specific story during their life.

Saint George and the Dragon

Written by: Margaret Hodges

Illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman

Written in elegant prose with beautiful illustrations, this is well worth a read (or 10) to engage young children with the story of a well-known saint.



Saint Francis of Assisi

Written by: Joyce Denham

Illustrated by Elena Temporin

With beautiful and engaging illustrations, this book takes readers on a journey of the entirety of Francis's life from his christening to his death.

Intermediate

Stories of the Saints

by Carey Wallace

Illustrated by Nick Thornborrow

Stunning illustrations set this book apart as a beautiful contribution to any family's library. Historical information for each Saint is given at the beginning of each story and the stories themselves are well written and give children a glimpse into the lives of the Saints and why we revere them. (Some illustrations may be distressing for very young children.)


[Editor’s Note: Elizabeth Frazer previously reviewed Stories of the Saints here.]


57 Stories of Saints

Written by: Anne Eileen Heffernan

Illustrated by: Jerry Rizzo

Told in a story book fashion, rather than strictly historical information, 57 Stories of Saints helps readers to gain better insight into the Saints as people, rather than just names on a page.

Once Upon a Time Saints

Written by: Ethel Pochocki

Illustrated by: Tom Matt

More Once Upon a Time Saints

Written by: Ethel Pochocki

Illustrated by: Kathy Holbrook

Once Upon a Time Saints: Around the Year

Written by: Ethel Pochocki

Illustrated by: Ben Hatke

Told in a fairy-tale style, the Once Upon a Time Saints books do not shy away from some of the more supernatural details involved in the stories of saints, including brothers who slept in a cave for 362 years, a real life giant, and angels who appear with a message.




The Loyola Treasury of Saints

Written by: David Self

Illustrated by: Amanda Hall

This extensive book features saints from the Gospels, the Early Church, the Western Church, the Church Triumphant and many more. With sacred art, hand-drawn illustrations, and photographs, there is much to delight in and study.


The Saints Chronicles Collection (1-5)

Written and Illustrated by: Sophia Institute Press

In classic graphic novel style, The Saints Chronicles’ dramatic storytelling engage readers from the first page.

Advanced


Saints: Lives and Illuminations

Written and Illustrated by: Ruth Sanderson

Giving short, historical accounts, this book gives readers a good overview of many of the Saints and includes a list of their Patronage and Feast Day.



The Fathers of the Eastern Church

Written by: Robert Payne

The Fathers of the Western Church

Written by: Robert Payne

These two volumes introduce readers to well-known and not-so-well known fathers of the church. Stories include St. Athanasius, St. Basil, and St. John Chrysostom from the Eastern Church and St. Jerome, St. Benedict, and St. Augustine from the Western Church. The short biographies range in length and will challenge the advanced reader to better understand some of the important figures in early church history.



Lisa DeGroot is a homeschooling mother of five who loves researching and discovering great kids books. She is a parishioner at St. Alban's Anglican in Oviedo, Florida.