Book Review: When God Made Light by Matthew Paul Turner

What this book is about:

This children’s book is a fun book about light – the light that God made around us and the light He’s put inside us all. It’s whimsical in its sometimes rhyming, free verse poetry style.

What I liked:

  • The illustrations – I honestly am SO hesitant to put this, but I’m going to do it anyway – please be kind and don’t judge me too harshly – I love that the illustration is of little black girls. We have Dr. Suess books which, when the characters aren’t yellow people, are little white humans. And we have a Disney anthology, mostly populated by white people. And most of our other are white people, too. I don’t buy many books for the kids because we GET so many from other people, so I am truly delighted to have a book that showcases a different skin color.
  • The message – In the first few pages, it talks about “Let there be light” and “God made the light” and I really thought it was going to be much more biblical than it ended up being. It talks about light outside, light inside of us, how light chases away darkness, and we’re lights in the world.
  • My kids like it – my 4 year old brought it to me today to read it. She likes getting new books and reading them, so I was glad that she liked it too. She is too young to understand the message, but that’s okay.

What I didn’t like:

  • It’s a touch long – I’m not saying it was too long to read, but the ending felt like it dragged for about 3 pages longer than it needed to. When it felt to me that it was at a natural ending point, it kept going.
  • Tricky phrases in places – for a book that is undoubtedly going to be read out loud MANY times, there are places where the cadence is thrown off from what preceded it and spots where I trip over the wording. As I get more familiar, I’m sure that will happen less, but as someone who has grown to be a fairly proficient out-loud reader, I get frustrated when I stumble over words and phrases because they’re just phrased awkwardly.

Overall thoughts and opinions:

Overall, I really like the book. I like the message and the illustrations are fun and the kids want to read it more. I’m happy to add it to our own collection and to read it as many times as the kids want.

I give this book 4 stars.

4 star rating

Learn more about the author and the book.


I received this book for free from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.


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