Review: Let There Be Light by Desmond Tutu

One of my favorite books that I read last year was God Has a Dream by Archbishop Desmond Tutu. It was a beautifully written, challenging book and I loved his honest and grace-filled style of writing. When I saw that he had written a book for children, I was intrigued. I had read mixed reviews about its age-level appropriateness, but I thought we’d give it a try.


Taken from the first chapter of the book of Genesis, Tutu tells the creation story in a poetic yet kid-friendly language. Bea loved snuggling in and listening to the words of the earth being formed. Nancy Tillman is the illustrator and did an amazing job of bringing the poetry to life. Bea especially loves spotting the animals on various pages.

I read some criticism of the last pages, when God creates people. Tutu paraphrases,

Then God said, “I will make people, and I’ll make them like me so they can enjoy the earth and take care of it.”

The accompanying illustration is of a group of children standing with animals, holding fruits and vegetables. The criticism is that it should be “man and woman,” not “people.” However, Bea loves this page most of all. It reminds her that God created all humans and that children can care for this world, as well. She also loves picking out the colors of their robes and talking about each individual child. I’m not sure she would have connected as much with a page showing a man and a woman.

We’ve read this book every day since receiving it and Bea, at 2.5 years old, easily sits through it and interacts with the story. I highly recommend Let There Be Light¬†for any young child’s library.

What are some of your favorite Bible story books?

I review for BookLook Bloggers
I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.