Dream Beans

Children - Religious Theme
39 Pages
Reviewed on 04/28/2022
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Astrid Iustulin for Readers' Favorite

Reading children's books is always a delightful experience, especially if they are as inspiring as Betsy Church's illustrated story, Dream Beans. The adventure begins one night at the home of a child named Oscar. Oscar is asleep, but he suddenly wakes up and discovers the Dream Beans next to him. What do they want? The Dream Beans are planted by God in his heart to let him know that he has talents and qualities that no one else has. They invite him to share his discovery with his parents and friends. Beautifully and colorfully illustrated by David Molinero, Dream Beans is a book that will make you and your children dream with open eyes.

When a children's book not only tells a good story but is also a source of inspiration for young readers and their parents, the author has definitely written something truly special. This is why I liked Dream Beans so much. Betsy Church conveyed a valuable message to her young readers and managed to do it in the nicest and most delicate way possible. Dream Beans is a book that will help children build their self-confidence, exactly as Oscar did. Although he, too, felt inadequate at first for the task that the Dream Beans assigned him, then he carried it out wonderfully. We must never underestimate our children's abilities. On the contrary, it is our duty to invite them to develop the talents and gifts that God has given them. I believe that Dream Beans is the right book to explain this important concept to children of all ages.

Emily-Jane Hills Orford

God gives us all special gifts, unique gifts that are meant for only us. It makes us different but in a positive way, one that calls out for us to share these gifts to help make the world a better place. A little boy is greeted by a group of Dream Beans one night as he’s falling asleep. What are these? They are, quite simply, messengers from God, present only to help those who listen find their special gifts and learn how to use them well. For example, they tell the little boy that the big hug he gave his mother helped her get through the day. And they remind him of the time he cheered in encouragement his best friend who was struggling to ride his bike without falling off. These are special gifts. The boy wonders what he’s supposed to do with this knowledge of the Dream Beans. They tell him to spread the message and encourage others to listen to their own Dream Beans and find their own special gifts. He tries, but there is one person he struggles to connect with.

Betsy Church’s picture book story, Dream Beans, is a clever way to teach young readers the importance of being ourselves, the importance of sharing our special gifts, to show others love, compassion, care and so much more. The plot develops well, following a young boy’s interaction with the Dream Beans inside his head. The story progresses through a question-and-answer dialogue until the boy understands what he has to do. The colorful illustrations help carry the story along and project the great importance of the message the little boy is learning. After he’s heard this message, he shares it with others. Beautifully told and presented in a manner that will help young readers comprehend the importance of God’s love for each of us and how we must accept our unique qualities because they are God’s gift to us.

K.C. Finn

Dream Beans is a work of fiction in the religious genre. It is aimed at younger readers and was penned by author Betsy Church with illustrations by artist David Molinero. The book follows the adventures of Oscar after he meets his Dream Beans, gifts from God that were planted in everyone’s hearts so that people who listened to them could find out what makes them special and make their dreams come true. Oscar tells his friends about the beans and in particular tries to help his Dad understand that the computer and the stress of his life get in the way of his beans helping him live his dreams.

What a joyful book this is, taking the idea of little characters who are always with us and whispering encouragement to us, and bringing it to life in such a colorful and inspiring way for children. The concept of the dream beans is charming enough, but author Betsy Church follows through on the seed of the idea with playful prose that sees Oscar understand both the beans and the love from God that they represent. Oscar's relationship with his father and the movement away from life’s distractions toward the things that really matter was particularly joyful to see. The story of Dream Beans is complemented by the extraordinary and vivid illustrations by David Molinero who brings Oscar and the dream beans to life with illustrations that walk a line between the real world and the dream world, perfect for a story such as this.