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Let it Shine

3.96  ·  Rating Details ·  263 Ratings  ·  114 Reviews
With a kaleidoscope of color and cut paper, Hans Christian Anderson Award nominee and two-time Coretta Scott King Award winner Ashley Bryan celebrates three favorite spirituals: "This Little Light of Mine," "Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In," and "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands." The power of these beloved songs simply emanates through his joyous interpretations. ...more
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published January 9th 2007 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers
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(showing 1-30)
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Holly Nelson
This beautiful illustrated book tells of three spiritual songs. The three songs are “This Little Light of Mine”, “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands”, and “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In”. The colorful illustrations celebrate the spiritual message in each of the songs that are shared in the book. The illustrations show hope and encouragement through messages in traditional African-American spirituals. The text is directly from songs that most kids may find familiar and have experienced re ...more
Amber Goebel
Jan 23, 2017 Amber Goebel rated it really liked it
Shelves: kidlit
This beautiful, brightly illustrated book won the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award in 2008, and it is deserving, in my opinion. Let It Shine is a collection of three famous African American spirituals, "This Little Light of Mine," "When the Saints Go Marching In," and "He's Got the Whole World In His Hands." Bryan's construction paper cut-out illustrations tell the story of the lyrics on each page with boldness and warmth. There is also an author's note at the end of the book that explains t ...more
Jj
Feb 28, 2014 Jj rated it it was amazing
Let It Shine, indeed! This book really is pretty amazing. I much enjoyed these super-colorful interpretations of commonly known and beloved spirituals. My personal favorite was "He's Got The Whole World in His Hands"--a real standout, even here. Best of all, the artwork is all created with good old paper and scissors (no rock required)...so ANYONE reading this can take inspiration and go forth to create.
Kaylee Bostick
This is a collection of spiritual songs. I might use this book in kindergarten and have my students echo read.
Kyoungbin Min
Mar 12, 2017 Kyoungbin Min rated it it was amazing
Shelves: d-songs
1. Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award
2. 4-8 years
3. This book tells three spiritual songs and it represents each lyrics with bright and colorful illustrations.
4. The book delights children to read with its beautiful charming illustrations. I like how it doesn't show any emotions on people's faces, but we all know they're joyful.
5. Read aloud, singing time, reading time
Betsy
Sep 30, 2007 Betsy rated it it was amazing
Earlier in the year I sent out a query asking for people to tell me about the books that could win the Caldecott and the title that got the most mentions was "Let it Shine". A book that I had not A) Heard of or B) Seen. I'm correcting this great wrong right now and though I'm not the kind of person who normally goes gaga over cut paper, Mr. Bryan has done some pretty slick stuff with just some colored pulp, a pair of scissors, and some of the finest folk songs in the world.

From the very first pa
...more
Jessica Cain
Dec 09, 2014 Jessica Cain rated it it was amazing
Shelves: t-l-307, musical
Summary and Critique:
This book was composed of three songs, “This Little Light of Mine”, “He’s Got he Whole World in His Hands” and “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In.” These songs have been passed down from generation to generation to show authentic culture from which they each came from. The song “This Little Light of Mine” is representing a child that is different and unique and that is what you can see from the illustrations, the song is about a light and each child is holding a different f
...more
Keely Wells
Dec 02, 2013 Keely Wells rated it liked it
This beautiful illustrated book tells of three spiritual songs. The three songs are “This Little Light of Mine”, “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands”, and “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In”. The colorful illustrations celebrate the spiritual message in each of the songs that are shared in the book. The text is directly from songs that most kids may find familiar and have experienced regardless of their faith or practice. The book shows the important of American history and culture on everyo ...more
Maggie Klipp
Nov 29, 2013 Maggie Klipp rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Let It Shine by Ashley Bryan is a picture book that is almost like a hymnal with colorful illustrations. The book starts out with the song that gives it its title, “Let It Shine”. The pictures represent each lyric as the pages go on using silhouettes of adults and children alike. They do not show faces of the people in the illustrations. The pictures depict a sort of joy with the use of only very warm and very cool colors to make the pictures. The next song that this book illustrates is “Oh, Whe ...more
Margo Martin
Let it Shine by Ashley Bryan is a great book because of the consistent inclusiveness shown on each pages illustrations. Each song celebrates specific culture, while also including other ethnicities into their story, and with this, a true theme of unity is seen throughout. In this book, culture explodes through the bright illustrations that tell the story of the songs “This Little Light of Mine,” “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In,” and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands ”. Each one of these ...more
jo
Feb 13, 2008 jo rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books, music
Let it Shine is an illustrated collection of three popular spirituals: "This Little Light of Mine," "Oh When the Saints Go Marching In," and "He's Got the Whole World In His Hands." Each page is filled with rollicking, brightly colored construction paper cutouts that truly make the lyrics shine.

I've been using Ashely Bryan's illustrated song collections for years, and I'm so glad to see this new, gorgeous collection get some attention. Not that Mr. Bryan is any stranger to the Coretta Scott King
...more
Chester Richmond
Let it Shine is an illustrated songbook that reflects one of Ashley Bryan’s favorite songs from growing up that his mother would sing. It is vividly illustrated in a large range of colors implying diversity. The tune itself is also associated with religion and the civil rights movement. It sends the message that no matter what situation arises that you should keep your spirits high. Even in darkness or the presence of Satan, you still must shine. Near the end of the book the creation of earth is ...more
Nora
Dec 07, 2015 Nora rated it liked it
Shelves: cultural
Let it Shine is a collection of three songs, all of which began as “Negro Spirituals”. “This Little Light of Mine”, “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In,” and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands” are each presented with full page illustrations for each verse, as well as the sheet music for each song at the end of the book. In the author’s note at the end of the book, Bryan addresses the history of these celebrated spirituals. She discusses the origin of these spirituals, as one of the few expr ...more
Natalie Payton
Summary/Critique:
Let it Shine by Ashley Bryan is a picture book that takes you through three songs, “This Little Light of Mine”, “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In”, and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands”. Though this book did not display a plot, I found a deeper meaning through the songs regarding freedom and hope. These three songs were originally sung by the African-American slaves when they were not free. They sung these songs and expressed their hopes and fight for freedom. This book
...more
Grace Willits
Nov 20, 2013 Grace Willits rated it really liked it
Well known songs, "This Little Light of Mine", "When the Saints Go Marching In", and "In His Hands" are brought to life with colorful illustrations in this picture book. Bright oranges, yellows and greens jump off of the pages. Similar to the sing-song of the words in each lyric, the illustrations dance about in their abstract style, created by a “kaleidoscope of color and cut paper.” I love that at the end of the lyrics and illustrations, there is sheet music is provided. It makes brings me bac ...more
Matt
Nov 07, 2009 Matt rated it it was amazing
Let it Shine written and illustrated by Ashley Bryan
Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award
1st -3rd grade
I thought that Let I shine was a great and colorful book. It put a new spin on three popular children’s Hymns: “This Little Light of Mine,” “Oh When the Saints Go Marching In,” and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands. The color collages really give a great visual effect and wakes up the reader. I’m giving this book a 5, because I was very impressed with the art work and it gives the reader a
...more
Marlayna
Nov 30, 2013 Marlayna rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
This colorful children’s book is filled with three different spiritual hymns originally called “Negro Spirituals” created by African Americans during slavery. The songs discuss freedom and rejoices in the wonders of life which contradicts what African American people were going through when the songs were created. The author states that she wanted to share these Spirituals so that many others can create their own.
The songs in this book should be familiar to most children so allowing the reader
...more
Erin Ramai
This book won a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award in 2008. It is appropriate for children ages 4-8.

Let it Shine: Three Favorite Spirituals, written and illustrated by Ashley Bryan, is a remembrance and glorification of African American slaves' spirituals, namely "This Little Light of Mine", "Oh When the Saints go Marching in" and "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands". The cut-paper collage illustrations in this book, created with energetic shades of colored construction paper, are kaleidosc
...more
Laura Hines
Dec 08, 2015 Laura Hines rated it it was ok
Shelves: nbgs
Let it Shine, written and illustrated by Ashley Bryan is a collection of three songs, all of which began as “Negro Spirituals”. “This Little Light of Mine”, “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In,” and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands” are each presented with full page illustrations for each verse, as well as the sheet music for each song at the end of the book. These three songs have been utilized in many classrooms during history lessons, in churches, as well as performed and sung for many ...more
John Sullivan
Apr 15, 2013 John Sullivan rated it really liked it
The book, Let it Shine was created by Ashley Bryan so that children could sing the passages to the tune of well-known songs: This Little Light of Mine, When the Saints Go Marching In, and He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands. The illustrations were created using bits of cut-up paper, and incorporate many shapes and colors; the most popular colors are yellow, orange, red, and blue, and circles are the primary shapes used. No two cuts of paper are the same, and the combination of pieces on the pa ...more
Brieanna Olsen
The song lyrics in this book that make up the text are a reflection of the power of people and coming together. From the book it says, “He’s got the whole world in His hands, he’s got the whole world in His hands” which I believe represents that we are all God’s people no matter who we are or what we look like. I like that the author used amazing pictures to go with the simple lyrics of each song. The repose from this book could be peace and cheer. The text is supposed to be sung instead of bein ...more
Cheyenne Cortesi
The book teaches the reader "Negro Spirituals". Within this book are three songs created by African American slaves: This Little Light, When the Saints, and In His Hands. Each song is accompanied with vibrant-colored layered art, all made with construction paper. The artwork is bright because all three songs deal with becoming free. These songs helped give many African American slaves hope for a bright future. At the end of the book, there is sheet music to show the reader exactly how the songs ...more
Alexandria
Apr 29, 2014 Alexandria rated it it was ok
Each song celebrates specific culture, while also including other ethnicities into their story, and with this, a true theme of unity is seen throughout. In this book, culture explodes through the bright illustrations that tell the story of the songs “This Little Light of Mine,” “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In,” and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands ”. Each one of these are songs that have been passed down from generation to generation and illustrate the authentic culture from which they ...more
Gerron Butchcoe
Dec 08, 2014 Gerron Butchcoe rated it really liked it
Shelves: 307-books
“Let it Shine” by Ashley Bryan is the colorfully illustrated book about three well known African-American spiritual songs, “This Little Light of Mine”, “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In”, and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands”. The reworking of these three songs is illustrated to interpret the meaning of each of the songs. Bryan created this book to celebrate the African-American culture and for everyone to enjoy.
I found this book to be illustrated very well for the style of book. Its si
...more
Greg
Jan 18, 2009 Greg added it
Let it Shine covers three spiritual songs; "This Little Light of Mine," "Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In," and "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands." The power and emotion from each song is clearly seen in each colorful collection of cut paper on each page. The images used in this book don't just tell the song. They allow the reader to interpret what the song might mean. Many images project upwards; hands open and point up, people's faces are looking up towards the heavens, and people's bod ...more
Kyra Calnan
Nov 21, 2013 Kyra Calnan rated it it was amazing
Illustrations bring to life well known songs This Little Light of Mine, When the Saints Go Marching In, and In His Hands. Bright oranges, yellows and greens jump off of the pages. Similar to the sing-song of the words in this picture book, the illustrations dance about in their abstract style, created by a “kaleidoscope of color and cut paper.” Sheet music is provided with the lyrics after each song has been illustrated. Ashley Bryan explains the deeper meaning behind the songs, or as she refers ...more
Leah Gerber
Dec 01, 2013 Leah Gerber rated it really liked it
Shelves: t-l-307
Let it Shine covers three spiritual songs; "This Little Light of Mine," "Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In," and "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands." The power and emotion from each song is clearly seen in each colorful collection of cut paper on each page. The images used in this book don't just tell the song. They allow the reader to interpret what the song might mean. Many images have the children’s hands open and up, people's faces are looking up towards the heavens. I think that Ashle ...more
Nicole
Feb 24, 2015 Nicole rated it it was amazing
My personal reaction to this book was the vibrant colors in the illustrations and how they grabbed my attention. An example would be the many people immersed through the book and how they all are different colors.
I would use this for read aloud enrichment-related purposes. This book would be appropriate for 6th grade. This is for enrichment-related purposes. Within the book there is three songs,“This Little Light of Mine”, “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands”, and “Oh, When the Saints Go Mar
...more
Matlin
Feb 06, 2016 Matlin rated it really liked it
What a treat for the senses! This book is simple in nature but complex and elegant in its illustrations. Words from the three songs ‘This Little Light of Mine,’ ‘When the Saints Go Marching In,’ and ‘He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands’ are the text of the book. They are simple and great for very young children. However, the illustrations were magical, being made of plain colored paper in the collage style. Bryan must have used every color in the entire rainbow for this book. Each page is burs ...more
Paige Wehmeyer
Nov 18, 2012 Paige Wehmeyer rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-book
Let it Shine, by Ashley Bryan is a wonderful book with amazing illustrations In this book three songs are celebrated “This Little Light of Mine”, “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands”, and “Oh, When the Saints Go Marching In”. This book has an African-American feel and paired with these songs amazing feelings run throughout this book. Illustrations and text in this book generate hope and wonder to further understand the meaning of these songs thoroughly. The illustrations are colorful and rea ...more
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Ashley Bryan is an illustrator, children's author, and poet.
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