YWAM Christian Heroes Then and Now Eric Liddell Review

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew

We are always blessed when we have an opportunity to review books from the Christian Heros Then and Now series by YWAM Publishing. I do not have to ask my children if they want to participate in the review, just which title they want to try. Since we were getting this one around the time of the winter Olympics we decided to try Eric Liddell: Something Greater Than Gold.

Christian Heroes Then and Now Series

The Christian Heroes Then and Now series are all biographies of Christians who have faithfully served God in various ways and places. Most are what we would call missionaries, and they include well-known names such as Elisabeth Elliot, George Mueller, Nate Saint, and more.

The Story of Eric Liddell: Something Greater Than Gold

This paperback book, written by Janet and Geoff Benge, is just under 200 pages long. It would be great independent reading for upper elementary and middle school students. However, we decided to use it as a family read-aloud. You could even use these for high school students, especially with the in-depth unit study.

This book is a biography of Olympic gold medalist Eric Liddell. However, his greatest accomplishment is not his gold medal but his work for Christ as a missionary to China. This book tells about his time as an Olympian and as a missionary.

Eric Liddell Unit Study

In addition to the book, we received a PDF study guide that included almost 70 pages of ideas and activities. You could use this to make the book into a complete unit study, or you can pick and choose activities to make it fit your needs. There are discussion questions for each chapter, writing prompts, creative writing activities, hands-on projects, and arts and crafts. The guide also included a timeline activity, a basic information sheet, and several maps.

The unit study allows students to go more in-depth not only in the life of Eric Liddell but in the Olympics, which he was known for, and in Chinese culture to bring a greater understanding of the people he served.


 The books work great as a family read-aloud, independent reading, or complete unit studies when combined with the study guides. I prefer to use most of the books as read alouds or personal reading for our family but add in the study guide for a unit study once or twice a year. 

YWAM Publishing

If this book interests you, you might also want to check out my reviews of several other books from YWAM Publishing: Alan Shepard, Benjamin Franklin, and Orville Wright

Don’t forget to click the graphic below to check out the variety of reviews by other Crew members. There are many great choices; which one would you like to try?


Pursuing Gold Book and Curriculum Review

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew

We recently had the opportunity to review Pursuing Gold (and Pursuing Gold: History and Critical Thinking Curriculum) by Cynthia L. Simmons and Heart of the Matter. My daughter loves reading and was excited to read this historical fiction book that includes a touch of sweet romance.

My daughter is a quick reader, but when the book was unexpectedly delayed, I didn’t think she would have it finished by the time I needed to share my review. I handed her the book and told her I needed her to work through the first few chapters and discuss the curriculum.

Later that night, she came to me and asked me if she had to stop when she reached the point I had mentioned. I said, of course not, and over the next two days, she managed to complete the entire 372-page book.

Cynthia L Simmons

Pursing Gold Book Overview

In the words of my fourteen-year-old daughter:

“I really like this book. It has kept me interested and wanting to read and not put it down (It must be a book about gravity, I can’t put it down!!). The story is really cool. It is about Peter and Mary Beth courting and running a bank during the Civil War.

They are struggling with keeping the bank above water, and there is someone counterfeiting. Throughout the book, they are working together to try and figure out who it is before it hurts the bank. Peter is also trying to keep his mother and sister safe; they are concerned about an invasion. “

This book is set in Tennessee during the civil war. While set during the civil war, the focus is more on the counterfeiting mystery, the instability of currency during the war, and the relationships than the war itself.

Pursing Gold History and Critical Thinking Curriculum

The history and critical thinking curriculum accompanying Pursuing Gold is a great way to incorporate history, economics, and literature discussion into the book.

The main section of the curriculum has a page or two for each chapter, including several discussion questions for each chapter. In addition, some chapters have crossword puzzles for the vocabulary words, and others include a bit more background information about the history covered in that chapter.

There are also Bible references included within the guide.

After that section, there are several appendixes with further work. The first is a study on budgeting. This fairly in-depth study includes information on budgeting, debt, interest, and more. Next is a section on the history of money, and finally, there is an answer and discussion key to help the parent work through the curriculum.

Our Thoughts and Conclusions

Overall, as she shared earlier in the review, my daughter really enjoyed this book. We chose to have her read through it and then discuss some of the questions from the curriculum. However, you could easily go chapter by chapter and make this a more in-depth unit study covering literature, history, and economics.

I appreciate that my daughter enjoyed the book so much that she finished reading it far faster than required. As a parent, I want to encourage a love of reading and not have her literature study be drudgery. I also appreciate the Christian morals that were sprinkled throughout the book. My daughter even went online to get the sequel for herself.

If you want to read a book with mystery, intrigue, and a bit of clean romance set in a historically challenging time, this is the book for you! Instead of focusing on the soldiers and politics of the time, I love that it focuses on the lives of regular small-town citizens.

Be sure to click on the graphic below to see what other families thought about Pursuing Gold.

Using Historical Fiction in Your Homeschool with Pursuing Gold