7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #612: Featuring Chris Raschka

h1 November 11th, 2018 by jules


Because it is beautiful and because I thought we could all use a shot of hope and love this week, I’ve some spreads here today from Chris Raschka’s newest picture book, Paul Writes (a Letter), published by Eerdmans in September.

In this 40-page picture book, readers meet St. Paul the Apostle, who is seen penning the letters people still read today, letters that had an immense influence on Christianity. “A couple thousand years ago, there lived a man named Paul,” the book opens, Raschka noting that Paul converted (“began to believe in the story of the life and teachings of Jesus”) in midlife and wrote letters to those he had met while traveling the Roman Empire. Raschka captures the letters’ main themes and shows many sides of Paul. Booklist’s review writes that Raschka “distills the material to its essence and brings close the messages of love and hope,” and they also note that “the letters frequently name the women as well as the men who were early Christians, an often overlooked part of Christianity.”

On the final spread, Rascha writes:

Some biblical scholars doubt that Paul wrote Hebrews. Who did? We don’t know who did for certain. I’ve chosen the parts that sound like Paul to me. And believe me, or believe me not, this one man, Paul, by writing letters to his friends, changed the world.

You can get a better sense of this book by peeking at some of its spreads, which is what I have here today. I always LOVE to see Raschka’a watercolors. Let’s do it. …


(Click either image to see spread in its entirety)


(Click either image to see spread in its entirety)


(Click either image to see spread in its entirety)


(Click either image to see spread in its entirety)



PAUL WRITES A LETTER. Text and illustrations © 2018 Chris Raschka. Illustrations reproduced by permission of the publisher, Eerdmans Books for Young Readers.

Note for any new readers: 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks is a weekly meeting ground for taking some time to reflect on Seven(ish) Exceptionally Fabulous, Beautiful, Interesting, Hilarious, or Otherwise Positive Noteworthy Things from the past week, whether book-related or not, that happened to you. New kickers are always welcome.

* * * Jules’ Kicks * * *

1) The record number of women elected to Congress and this upcoming New Yorker cover by Barry Blitt:

2) When the news got me down this week, I watched this:

3) Completing a pin collection:



4) This couple’s first dance at their wedding, which I happened to see online, is also happy-making when the news gets you down:



5) I had a great conversation this week with two women who are planning a documentary about children’s literature.

6) Being retweeted by the New York Times’ children’s book editor!

7) This tweet from author-illustrator Marla Frazee:

7½) Andrew Bird’s brand-new song:



Bonus #1) This is a bit belated, but for Halloween, my girls were Willow and Drusilla. (One of their best friends, who trick-or-treated with them, was Buffy.)

Bonus #2) One of my favorite people will join us for dinner tonight with her son.

Bonus #3) We have cupcakes.

What are YOUR kicks this week?

7 comments to “7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #612: Featuring Chris Raschka”

  1. Hi Imps! Thank you, Jules, for sharing art and music and hope. I love joyful dancers. I love joyful people. 🙂 Congrats on having a kick-filled week!

    My kicks include:
    1) Voting
    2) Performing
    3) Connecting
    4) Amusing
    5) Containing
    6) Rescuing
    7) Writing

  2. Argh! A whole list written and lost.
    Jules, love the book and the illustrations. Besides all the great music and art, your pin collection! Awesome.
    LW: voting, connecting and writing are favorites.
    My kicks:
    1. Friends
    2. Family
    3. Movies
    4. Books
    5. Lunch
    6. Art Museum
    7. Beautiful fall days.
    Prayers for all in the communities affected by the fires and tragedy Thousand Oaks and Simi Valley are my growing up communities.

  3. Oh, wonderful timing for this book with these illustrations. That quote from the final spread is so moving and potent.

    Jules – what a fun kick-filled week! Thank youfor all the uplifting links too. Hope Buffy, Willow and Drusilla had a great Halloween. Enjoy the dinner with friends and cupcakes!

    LW – yay for voting, performing, connecting, amusing and rescuing. Sounds like a packed good week.

    Jone – what a good week you’ve had. I have donated to help some of those affected by the Woolsey Fire, I have many friends still in LA and surrounding areas, and am praying for all those affected.

    My kicks this week:
    1) Watching “Me and Orson Welles” brought me back to how much I love theater and that time in history.
    2) Got my copy of Sophie Gamand’s Pit Bull Flower Power book, & Sophie Gamand herself commented on my pic of Daisy posing with the book on IG.
    3) Beautiful fall in Portland.
    4) Going to see Lucy Bellwood and the Oregon Symphony String Quartet for Portland Lit Crawl on Friday night.
    5) Cocktails afterwards at Imperial.
    6) First fall fire in the fireplace last night.
    7) Losing myself in this fun list, while I don’t agree with all the pics, cannot deny there are some amazing dances: https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2018/entertainment/best-movie-dance-scenes/?utm_term=.2832ce26c485
    7.5) Embarking on a big decluttering and deep cleaning project.
    Bonus – thankful for all veterans and their service, and all those helping fight the fires in California right now.

    Happy Weekend All!

  4. Little Willow, kickin’ ass, as always.

    Jone: I hope your friends and family are safe in the midst of all the fires!

    Rachel: Same to you! Your second kick is exciting, and thanks for that bonus. I echo your gratitude.

    Hope you all have a great week …

  5. This book is touching and Chris Raska’s genius and kindness are so present. And it is all bringing me to tears.
    Thank you for the kicks and the sharing.

  6. Big hug, Allison.

  7. Oh, my word, I just saw PAUL WRITES A LETTER when you retweeted it — good GRAVY. That’s gorgeous. The apostle Paul was one opinionated dude – as well as a kind and careful person at times when instructing his many friends and parishioners. This is gorgeous – I think this is a picture book worth framing.

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