Monarch Books, 2010 RRP $21.99
Reviewed by Karyl Davison.
STORYTELLING used to be the main way of passing on local values, traditions and history. Communication has change enormously but storytelling is still fundamental to the way we communicate each and every day. For the Christian church storytelling is critical to sharing the gospel, and engaging with the biblical witnesses. So often when we hear the scriptures read in church, study groups and elsewhere the readers more often than not slip into 'Bible speak', that tone of voice that seems to say "I'm being very reverent here". Alternatively, some people read the Bible as if they're reading the label on a medicine bottle! But the biblical narratives are meant to be heard, and they're telling amazing stories. Bob Hartman has been working as a professional storyteller since 1988. He also runs storytelling workshops for adults. In Telling the Gospel, Mr Hartman uses a wide variety of narrative forms to produce storytelling that will delight and engage the hearers. Each story begins with an introduction that explains its particular place and function. Also included are 'telling tips', hints at how best to tell the particular story. The contents page is helpful naming the story and its accompanying passage of scripture from the gospels. Although Mr Hartman's is a fairly conservative approach, it is an excellent resource for enriching the telling of the gospel stories in a way that will engage the hearers.