Andrew Peterson, Author of North! Or Be Eaten

When I was teaching, I had a few students who seemed to be good at everything. They were excellent students, the best soloists in choir, the lead in the Christmas program, the star athlete on their teams (and they played multiple sports), the speech contestant winners, the head cheerleader, the top artist, the best pianist or trumpet player. I’m only exaggerating slightly. Some students seemed loaded with talent—artistic and athletic talent.

Well, I don’t know about the athletic part, but Andrew Peterson, author of the CSFF Blog Tour January feature, North! Or Be Eaten, is one of these “bursting from the seams” talented people.

Let me say up front, I don’t think this is an enviable place to be. Andrew and others of his ilk must often decide how to divide their time between things they love equally, have the same talent for, and have found success doing. Either that, or they renounce sleep. 😆

Some of you know Andrew foremost as a musician. He is a gifted singer and songwriter. I heard him for the first time this Christmas as part of a Family Life Today program. One of the hosts remarked that Andrew is one of his favorite contemporary singers, and I thought, Do they know he also writes fantasy?

I became acquainted with Andrew as a writer when his debut novel, the middle grade fantasy On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness came out. I think I first heard about him from Jonathan Rogers, the outstanding author of the Wilderking Trilogy, who pretty much raved about Andrew’s writing.

Eventually I subscribed to Andrew’s group blog, The Rabbit Room, where he and a group of other artists discuss music and books and movies and the creation of art and theology and the Bible. What an encouraging look at a group of Christians engaged with our culture.

Among Andrew’s other endeavors, he produced a children’s book that captured my attention. From his Web site:

The Ballad of Matthew’s Begats
An Unlikely Royal Family Tree

Who says all those “begats” in the first chapter of Matthew aren’t fun to read?

Kids and parents will have fun reading and singing along with this joyful Andrew Peterson song. The lyrics tell not only of the Biblical list of relatives, but for the first time, kids will learn why the “begats” are extremely important. This story and song demonstrate that Abraham’s long lineage leads directly to the most important Bible character ever, Jesus Christ.

This special book bridges the Old Testament and New Testament, showing Jesus’ birth as part of God’s plan from the very beginning.

(So says the publisher. I’m really excited about this book, not just because I’ve always wanted to write a children’s book, and not just because Cory Godbey’s illustrations are delightful, but because I love being a part of impressing the words of the Lord on children. With a banjo.)

Andrew has taken time to blog about the CSFF Tour where you can leave comments for him if you’d like. Also, if you want to learn his thoughts about writing, check out Chawna Schroeder’s interview with him.

And don’t forget to see what the other CSFF bloggers have to say about North! Or Be Eaten.

Disclaimer as per current FTC rules: Months ago, as part of the Children’s Book Blog Tour, I received a free copy of North! Or Be Eaten for review from the publisher WaterBrook.

13 Comments

  1. Great point Rebecca. You’re absolutely right about the difficulties of many talents. I know a young man in the same boat, and he’s having a hard time finding which of his talents to pursue.

    I love Andrews songs. Just listened to some today. I’m buying some his songs for sure.

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  2. When I heard the song Family Life Today played, I knew I wanted to get his music. Maybe when his new CD comes out …

    Thanks for stopping by, Brandon.

    Becky

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  3. The Ballad of Matthew’s Begats sounds neat. I’ll have to look into that.

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  4. And on Mr. Peterson, we completely agree. I actually have a good friend who regularly blogs on The Rabbit Room, but I’ll not divulge his identity, lest he end up on your watch-list. 🙂

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  5. How quaint that you think I have such a list, Mike. Now which one of us posted on our Facebook page asking our friends to comment in support of our views? 😮 Perhaps because you have a watch list, you assume others do too? 😕

    Becky

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  6. Krysti, I agree! I thought this children’s book sounded like a real winner!

    Becky

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  7. I keep a list of friends, Becky – not a list of contrarians who disagree with me.

    You’re welcome, by the way, for the most web traffic you’ve ever seen. 😉

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  8. To clarify my above comment (the first part – the last part is self-explanatory 🙂 ), I don’t keep enemies lists; I have books on my bookshelf of authors who disagree. But if I told you that I have friends in some of your circles (we actually have a number of Facebook friends in common, in fact), I can’t imagine but you’d be extremely reticent to listen to anything they have to say – given what you’ve said you think about me and my friends on your blog this past week. I find this unfortunate, of course; we need less division and more diversity in the family of faith right now. But I also understand, as I’ve been there myself before. Fifteen years ago, I definitely had a watch-list!

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  9. First of all, Mike, it’s never in my entire life crossed my mind to have a watch list. Why would you do that, fifteen years ago or at any time?

    You said; I can’t imagine but you’d be extremely reticent to listen to anything they have to say – given what you’ve said you think about me and my friends on your blog this past week.

    I’m truly sorry you feel I haven’t listened to what you and your friends have said. I thought I was engaging in conversation as much as my time would allow, and I know I’ve learned a great deal about emerging thought.

    However, the fact remains, I don’t agree with you. I believe you are deceived and are engaging in false teaching. We don’t have the same starting places (me believing in the Bible as authoritative and you believing it is something else). Inevitably we arrive at different understandings of God and His character, Man’s sin nature, Jesus’s purpose for coming in the form of Man, who comprises the church, and probably a handful of other central ideas.

    Unity? Would you look for unity with some guy who stands outside your house calling your wife despicable names and accusing her of all kinds of wrong doing? That’s how I feel when you and some of the others say God is a monster, a tyrant, schizophrenic, etc. The only unity possible would first require you to change your views of God, which I know is possible.

    That’s why I have no watch list or any personal animosity toward you or any of the others, Mike. I don’t know what God is doing in your life.

    And as far as owing you a debt of gratitude for the increased traffic here at A Christian Worldview of Fiction during these thought-provoking exchanges, I hate to burst your bubble, but the credit goes to God. As it happens, I specifically asked God what I should blog about and for Him to bring the people that He wanted to come to my site.

    And since I believe God hears and answers prayer … all glory to Him for the traffic and the conversation.

    Becky

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  10. Hi Rebecca, I understand where you’re coming from – and while I need to move on, I do hope I can go back sometime this week and address a couple of dangling issues that you and Dr. Ransom, particularly, raised in conversation.

    Please know, though, that I don’t believe that God is “is a monster, a tyrant, [or] schizophrenic” – I just believe that God can be characterized in that way if we have a ‘flat,’ un-nuanced reading of Scripture that doesn’t take into account the developmental stage the authors of Scripture were at at the time, and/or the ways in which God might have condescended to them in their particular covenant. Like you, I believe the best and most superlative things about God – that God is good, just, gracious, a righteous judge, holy, etc. – but what those words mean, and how we get at them is (indeed) different.

    As far as you and God being in cahoots for blog-writing strategies, well, I can’t compete with that! No contest. 🙂

    All the best to you…

    MM

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  11. Hey, Mike, I do hope you return and complete your thoughts about what Stephen and I have written. You’re always welcome.

    You said: As far as you and God being in cahoots for blog-writing strategies, well, I can’t compete with that! No contest. 🙂

    While I realized you said this in jest, I don’t want to leave the wrong impression. I asked God to bring the people He wanted to A Christian Worldview of Fiction, something I do frequently (though not as frequently as I should—haven’t asked yet today, for instance). If He answers by sending ten or tens of tens, that’s His choice. It’s not my doing, not a formula for high blog stats!

    I do believe that God moves in people’s lives, sometimes to harden hearts, sometimes to convict or convince, to comfort or encourage, and He uses His people. In this high tech world, He can prompt people however He chooses to find articles to read, just as His Holy Spirit has at times prompted me to pray for people with a fervency I don’t understand.

    God is God, after all. He knows more than I do, cares far more than I can, is sovereign over the affairs of Men. Plus, He’s promised to hear and answer prayer. I’m ashamed at how infrequently I take Him up on His offer.

    But when I do, I want to be sure, He gets all the credit for answering as He sees fit. In this case, He saw fit to bring you and your friends, so I’m grateful to Him for that.

    Becky

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  12. And if God can use Nebukadnezar, Assyria, et al, as His ‘servants’ and instruments, I suppose He can use little ‘ol me to bring you readers, eh? 🙂

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  13. Equating yourself with Nebuchadnezzar, Assyria, et. al. is your idea, not mine. Mike, I’m not going to let you put words in my mouth. I don’t have black lists and I’m not going around saying you’re like a brutal Babylonian king. If you want to believe that’s what I’m about, of course I can’t stop you or change your mind.

    You think you know me because you were where I am fifteen years ago. In contrast, I don’t think we’ve ever been in the same place. Maybe you would have made such an assumption when you were in your “way back there on the journey to spirituality” phase. It’s just not me. 😎

    Becky

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