Desmond Tutu & Nancy Tillman Team Up On Delightful Kids’ Book

Let There Be Light is a retelling of the creation story by Nobel Peace Prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu and On the Night You Were Born illustrator Nancy Tillman.

The book follows the familiar creation story, using descriptive language even the youngest readers will enjoy.

The good: This book is lyrical. Take this line:

Now God decided to make the world even more dazzling, with tall trees and long grass.

The illustrations are uniformly excellent, and at times they’re breathtaking. This is Nancy Tillman’s fine work at its best. Elephants and giraffes tease that they might leap off the page, and a white tiger’s colored stripes sparkle.

This is the story of the creator pleased with creation. He “clapped his hands together in delight.”

And children are inevitably part of this creation, children of all colors wearing bright robes and glowing gold crowns on an African plain.

This is a board book, so little dirty hands won’t disturb its brilliance.

The not-so-good: If you’re looking for an account of Adam and Eve or original sin, Tutu’s account may disappoint. This is taken from the very beginning of the Bible’s book of Genesis, and it doesn’t go further than that.

That’s not a problem for me, but consider yourself warned.

My conclusions: Really, there’s nothing to dislike about this book. It is beautiful, and it’s beautifully told. It would make a lovely gift for any child in the Jewish or Christian traditions.

Let There Be Light is published by Zonderkidz and retails for $7.99.

Full disclosure: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. This is my honest opinion of the book.

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Author Profile: Consumer Expert Teresa Jackson

I'm a journalist living in Central Oregon. I have two little kids, which for me has meant staying home. And playing board games.

Lots of board games.

I'm also an avid reader and a theology nerd.

You can follow all of my interests and personal quirks on Twitter @teresawjackson and at

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