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LET THE WHOLE EARTH SING PRAISE by Tomie dePaola Kirkus Star


by Tomie dePaola & illustrated by Tomie dePaola

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-399-25478-9
Publisher: Putnam

DePaola takes two pieces of the Old Testament (the Benedicite and Psalm 148) and transmutes them into a simple song for all Creation. It begins, “Sun and moon, / stars and comets in the Heavens. Praise God.” The backgrounds are a deep cream (the paper is tea-stained), and the stylized stars and comets float on the page in vibrant but almost translucent acrylic washes. Each double-page spread calls on the world to bless and praise God: light and darkness, frost and snow, “all that sprout,” all birds, fish, animals and “All people, / young and old.” The text is all hand-lettered, and “God” is always rubricated (displayed in red). The images of birds, fish, animals, flowering plants and so on are in the most elemental of shapes (according to the author’s note, he was inspired by the folk art of the Otomi around Puebla, Mexico). The people are representative of all, with green, blue and purple faces and reverent expressions.  Every page is infused with joy and color, and sweet touches like the ladybug that sits on the letter G on the cover delight. (Picture book. 4-8)