Esdras Pierre Etrenne’s Bible Album is a lengthy offering (1,785 pages) of nature photographs accompanied by Bible verses.
The author begins the book with a note: “I wanted to make something beautiful for the world . . . so this is it!” This statement provides the sole context for the rest of the book. After the Table of Contents, each of the pages features a full-color photograph of flowers, mountains, trees, water, or some other beautiful and relaxing scene from nature. Superimposed over the lower part of the photo is a Bible verse in a text box—one per page.
Each of the 66 books of the Bible is represented in this tome. Most have 25 pages of verses; a few of the shorter books have fewer than 25.
The author doesn’t specify why certain verses are included but many are well-known. Paging through the 25 selections from Psalms, each one is recognizable, including “Create in me a clean heart”; “The Lord is my shepherd”; and “Be still, and know that I am God.” Each of the chosen verses are also worthy tidbits of truth, such as ““Wisdom is better than rubies.”
All of the photographs are striking, however the reasoning behind their selection can be puzzling. For instance, one verse begins, “The rainbow will be in the cloud.” The photo is of clouds but not a rainbow. Another verse that speaks of the “bush burned with fire” features a picture of a snow-covered mountain. The disconnect is jarring. Another drawback is that the photographs are partially obscured by the text box and have no credits.
Overall, this is a curious book. Many readers will wish for greater context and guidance about how to use it and a deeper acquaintance with the author’s voice. Those who can looks past this, however, will find a simple offering that seems presented as a testament to God and the glory of His world.