“The Word of Promise” audio bible is a great idea for audio bibles. It incorporates the multi-voice narration of scripture accompanied by sound effects (coffee pouring into a cup, walking, crowds cheering/talking, birds chirping, etc) and orchestral music.

One of the great aspects of this resource is that one reader/actor is assigned to one biblical writer throughout the entire New Testament. For example, all of the Paul’s letters were read by Stacy Keach, and all of John’s were read by Louis Gossett Jr. I thought these two men did a fantastic! They read as though they were part of the story, rather than simply readers of a story.

On the other hand, having one reader assigned to certain characters can be a double-edged sword, especially if you don’t care much for the reader’s style. For example, Jim Caviezel (you’ll probably know him best for his outstanding role in “The Passion of the Christ”) read all of Jesus’ words and I honestly don’t think he portrayed a very good audio-Jesus. He frequently read without what should have been the necessary emotions, and he often read in that airy, gentle, monotone style that so frequently characterizes portrayals of Jesus. Not a 5-star performance, unfortunately.

I expected this audio bible to be produced in a radio-theater style, since the preview boasts, “Hear the Bible Come Alive in Dramatic Audio Theater”. I was a little disappointed about that, but many of the performer’s readings made up for the difference. Just don’t expect the quality of audio drama like you hear in “Adventures in Odyssey”, because this isn’t it. It’s simply more of a dramatic reading than an audio theater.

All-in-all, however, I liked this audio bible and am sure others will as well. With a few tweaks in future editions, this could be a knock-out resource for young and old audiences alike!

I am a book review blogger for Thomas Nelson Publishers.

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