Through the experience of a fictional young sailor-smuggler named Tom Barton, O’Dell depicts the spiritual darkness of England in the early 1500s before the Reformation, and his encounter with an unassuming man bent on translating the Bible into the English language.

The Hawk That Dare Not Hunt by Day endears the reader to the humble, hidden, physically frail, but resolutely determined and tremendously courageous William Tyndale.

For eleven years, Tyndale hid in peril of his life from secret agents of the King who made every attempt to overthrow his translation of the New Testament from Greek into English. It was his desire that “If God spare my life, ere many years pass, I will cause a boy that driveth the plow shall know more of the Scripture than {the local clergy} dost.

What an unspeakable privilege it is to have the Word of God in our own language! May our gratitude be expressed in the constant reading, meditating, studying, and treasuring of this gift that God, using the weak things of this world to confound the mighty, has graciously given.

I highly recommend The Hawk That Dare Not Hunt by Day as a Family Read Aloud.