In the Beginning

In the Beginning

Creation Stories From Around the World

Book - 1988
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An illustrated collection of twenty-five myths from various parts of the world explaining the creation of the world.
Publisher: San Diego : Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, c1988.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780152387419
0152387412
9780152387402
0152387404
Branch Call Number: J 291.2 HAMI
Characteristics: xi, 161 p. : col. ill. ; 27 cm.
Additional Contributors: Moser, Barry - Illustrator

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FindingJane Feb 01, 2016

As long as man has existed, he has wondered about the world around him, how it came into being and his place within it. This anthology lists some of the stories of origin from around the world. The best ones are those that feature the voice or actions of man and/or woman or the less-than-divine beings that create them. Some of the stories are a little dry, as they are barren of emotion, while others are surprisingly humorous. (The one about a god retreating from Earth because mankind kept poking him whenever he went about his daily life is rather superior.)

The one that falls really flat is the first two books of Genesis, the one familiar to most English-speaking Westerners and Europeans. Elohim the Creator merely brings things into being, pats himself on the back for the job well done and his sole reaction is to call it “good”. This adjective, so faint and lackluster, gets done to death, tacked on as it is at the end of every act of creation; a riveting storyline this is not.

Of course, like any anthology, there will be selections you like and ones that you don’t. By and large, this anthology merits attention. It is also enhanced by the vivid illustrations of Barry Moser. Mr. Moser favors a realistic style, giving us gods, animals, humans, etc., that are not necessarily beautiful but command the attention nonetheless.

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