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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Young Jacob is enthralled with the walking stick that he finds. His grandfather tells him to look closer and explains that it's called a praying mantis because its front legs are bent as if it's praying. Only Grandfather notices that there's only one front leg. In fact, it's a rare, five-legged mantis with the right leg missing. And that's where the story comes in because, as Grandmother explains, this is not the first five-legged mantis in their neck of the woods.
The story goes back to a certain praying mantis with only five legs. Its name was Norman and, after hearing a fiery sermon about the need for more dedicated missionaries, Norman raised his one and only front leg enthusiastically. But no one saw. In fact, since Norman was a small bug, his dedication to preach the gospel in far distant places was a rather far- fetched ideal. Norman was determined. And, in the end, he did become a missionary of sorts and he reaped his just rewards for having returned stray sheep, so to speak, to the Good Shepherd's herd.
Jill Glassco makes A Chancellor Ferry Tale into a classic story complete with lessons to learn. Each chapter has a review section that summarizes important lessons and relevant Biblical quotes from that chapter. It's cleverly told and the lessons are well learned even before the chapter summary appears. This is a charming children's story that teaches young children valuable lessons. A family keepsake and a treasure to read.