Faith, Hope and the Giant

Christian - Fiction
Kindle Edition
Reviewed on 10/02/2020
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

John Callison is a retired school teacher from Texas. He worked with special needs children for almost forty years. His experiences led him to write a book that reflected the struggles many people have to find acceptance, hope, love and faith when they are "different". His work uses various characters and situations that hopefully portray the quest some people must make to overcome fear and rejection in order to find the love and affirmation most of us desire in our individual lives.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Faith, Hope and the Giant is a work of short fiction with fantasy and Christian themes in its adventure plot, and was penned by author John Callison. As the title suggests, three central characters take on the main roles in this charming fantasy tale, uniting against an evil force and finding their place in the world together as a result. The two young girls, Faith and Hope, address issues of fear and friendship as they help a giant who feels terribly out of place to discover love and acceptance. The work is also beautifully illustrated throughout to tell this classic tale of good versus evil with modern and moral undertones.

Author John Callison delivers a biblical message of kindness and acceptance in a very accessible way that children from all walks of life will be able to enjoy. Rich Valley was a beautifully described place through the author’s use of highly atmospheric and image-filled language, but there are also gorgeous color illustrations to help younger readers feel the magic of this fantasy work too. I enjoyed the dialogue and the narrative structure as there was something very classic and nostalgic about it, harkening back to the days of timeless fairytales. The characterization of the central three figures was also distinct, with dialogue that gave them their own unique voices. This would be an excellent read-aloud story, emphasized by parents, guardians, or teachers. Overall, I would highly recommend Faith, Hope and the Giant as a charming work for all the family to enjoy and discuss.

Rosie Malezer

Faith, Hope and the Giant is an incredible tale of courage and strength. Written by John Callison, it tells the story of a close-knit town known as Rich Valley - a town blessed with an abundance of food, friendship, and love but which has been cursed by an evil wizard to never known true happiness. The inhabitants live in fear because of the wizard’s curse. When a gentle giant comes to town, the people immediately cower in fear, judging him on his over-sized looks alone. As the animals of nature befriend the lonely giant, others start to see that he is actually kind and gentle, and they soon learn to trust him. This is wonderful for the giant but antagonizes the wizard, who vows to kill every member of the townsfolk in revenge for them daring to betray his curse by feeling joy and happiness when their superstitions had kept them in fear for so very long.

I couldn’t help but smile throughout Faith, Hope and the Giant. It reminded me of the Bible Stories encyclopedias of my own youth which also spoke of fear, mistrust, judgment but revealing the truth underneath. John Callison’s writing talent for love and the greater good unfolded beautifully in his remarkable story of courage and friendship, demonstrating the fact that a book cannot be judged by its cover. What we see is not what a person is made up of inside, and that strength, spirit, and teaming up against evil can win, even when the odds look so grim. The avalanche which is set in motion to destroy the town and the people who live within it represents so many obstacles in life and I most definitely enjoyed the teaching method of the words in the text. I absolutely loved reading Faith, Hope and the Giant and recommend it to all readers, young and old alike. Tales that bring a smile are few and far between, and the swell within my heart as this story engulfed my imagination most definitely made Faith, Hope and the Giant worth the read.

Edith Wairimu

In John Callison’s Christian children’s book, Faith, Hope and the Giant, an evil wizard casts a spell on the beautiful Rich Valley, causing the inhabitants to live in constant fear. Etched on a giant pine tree at the entrance of the valley are the words of the wizard’s curse, a continuous reminder of the terror that he spoke over the people. Years later, a giant man comes to the valley but is discouraged when everyone in Rich Valley seems fearful of him. Still hopeful that the people will learn about him and warm to him, Joshua builds his house on the rocky hills close to Rich Valley. One day, two girls invite him to their parents’ house. When the villagers see him playing with the girls, they begin to see his gentleness. With time, laughter returns to Rich Valley but the evil wizard has sent a spy to watch the people and is planning his next spell.

In the opening scene, John Callison paints a stunning background of Rich Valley: bounteous trees that produce many types of fruits, its soil is rich and the harvest is always plentiful, the water is clear, and the sun’s rays reflect on its gleaming pebbles. The beautiful background creates a sharp, striking contrast to the darkness caused by the spell. Vibrant art brings the characters to life and is useful in telling the story. Biblical themes are presented in an easy-to-understand way that is comprehensible to children and the conflict between good and evil creates a foundation for the story. As one of the main characters, Joshua initially struggles with the need to be accepted by people who do not understand him, a relatable issue for many people. I loved reading Faith, Hope and the Giant. It discusses important themes through an entertaining story.