Turner and Catrow celebrate the divine in each person.
“From the very beginning, amid history and time, / you, little one, never left God’s mind.” From facial expressions to the sound of one’s voice, God has it all planned out, according to Turner’s rhyming couplets. Each of us is unique and needed in the world for our God-given gifts; we are reflections of God and God’s hopes for us: that we will be kind, givers and dreamers even during hardships; that we will love one another, etc. Unfortunately, young children may have trouble getting these messages from Turner’s text. Words and word order are often chosen to suit the rhyme and rhythm rather than for understanding, and there is some advanced vocabulary: “ ’Cause God loves you creating, your true self displaying, / when light on the inside through art is portraying. / When you make-believe, the stories conceived, / the heroics, the magic, those tricks up your sleeve.” Catrow’s illustrations are delightful in their bright colors and expressive, brown-skinned protagonist. They take a flight of fancy when the text turns to gifts, however, depicting an extended sequence in which the young girl uses her artistic talents to uplift, the result being an overemphasis on the value of the visual arts over all other talents.
Still, books that connect individuality, being beloved of God, and using one’s God-given talents are few and far between, and with some adult support, this can help fill that gap. (Picture book. 3-7)