Glimpsing God’s astounding creativity

Review of "All Things Bright and Beautiful" by Jean Claude.

Self-taught British illustrator Jean Claude brings to life Cecil Frances Alexander’s well-known hymn, “All Things Bright and Beautiful,” which was first published in Hymns for Little Children in 1848. An acclaimed poet and writer of hymns, Alexander also wrote “Once in Royal David’s City” and “There is a Green Hill Far Away.”

Jean Claude’s detailed, vivid pictures – a playful monkey, a bright toucan, a massive elephant, a loping giraffe, a racing zebra, a graceful gazelle, flowing streams, and verdant foliage – accompany the hymn’s refrain: “All things bright and beautiful, / All creatures great and small, / All things wise and wonderful, / The Lord God made them all.” Bright illustrations depicting palm trees, cacti, myriad flowers of every shape and size, an owl, a parrot, a mallard, and more complement the hymn’s first stanza: “Each little flower that opens, / Each little bird that sings, / He made their glowing colours, / He made their tiny wings.”

Jean Claude’s portrayals of the following stanzas, which mention purple-headed mountains, rivers, sunsets, morning light, cold winter winds, pleasant summer sun, ripe fruit, and more, provide windows for children (and their parents or caregivers) to glimpse God’s majesty and astounding creativity, and encouragement to praise our Creator.

Recommended as an excellent addition to a family’s devotional library or as a bedtime song book to share with young children.


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