A gem on the bookshelf: Review of God Gave Us Love by Lisa Tawn Bergren

Our kids love books, consequently we have a bookshelf lined with kids’ books. It overtook the adults’ collection of best-loved books more than a year ago. They have their favorites, too, and I find we’re often drawn to the same ones over and over again.

A few weeks ago, I pulled this one off the shelf. And I was pleasantly surprised by the message, illustrations and overall story.

My biggest pet peeve with children’s books is when the  message feels forced, and I don’t get that at all from “God Gave Us Love.” In it, a young cub and her grandpa are on a fishing trip when some otters disturb their day. That leads to a conversation about love, all different kinds of love, including the kind where we love people but don’t exactly like them at the moment.

Bergren writes a fun, faith-filled story that illustrates a great lesson about love. She has other “God Gave Us …” themed children’s books that I’m eager to check out. And illustrator Laura J. Bryant captures beautifully this discussion about love with polar bear cubs in a variety of family settings. The pictures are simple, clear, fun and realistic.

Sometimes I think writing a children’s book might be easy, but when I see the difference between an okay story and a great one (like this one), I change my tune.

Ours is a hardcover, but the author recently released this as a board book.

I plan to pull this one off the shelf more often.

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