He's Got the Whole World in His Hands

He's Got the Whole World in His Hands

by Kadir Nelson


$17.81 $17.99 Save 1% Current price is $17.81, Original price is $17.99. You Save 1%.
View All Available Formats & Editions
Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for guaranteed delivery by Thursday, October 24


What began as a spiritual has developed into one of America’s best-known songs, and now for the first time it appears as a picture book, masterfully created by award-winning artist Kadir Nelson.Through sublime landscapes and warm images of a boy and his family, Kadir has created a dazzling, intimate interpretation, one that rejoices in the connectedness of people and nature.

Inspired by the song’s simple message, Kadir sought to capture the joy of living in and engaging with the world. Most importantly, he wished to portray the world as a child might see it—vast and beautiful.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780803728509
Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date: 09/08/2005
Pages: 32
Sales rank: 107,810
Product dimensions: 10.20(w) x 10.20(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile: AD170L (what's this?)
Age Range: 4 - 7 Years

About the Author

Kadir Nelson's award-winning books include Ellington Was Not a Street by Ntozake Shange, which won the Coretta Scott King Award and was an ALA Notable Children's Book; and Just the Two of Us by Will Smith, which received an NAACP Image Award. Mr. Nelson lives in San Diego, California, with his wife and two daughters.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Nelson uses the old spiritual—offered here, astonishingly, in its first singleton, illustrated edition,though it’s available in many collections—as a springboard to celebrate family togetherness. Each line of a four-verse version of the lyric captions an intimate scene of an African-American lad, three sibs (one, lighter-skinned, perhaps adopted) and two parents in various combinations, posing together in both city (San Francisco) and country settings, sharing "the moon and the stars," "the wind and the clouds," "the oceans and the seas," and so on. Sandwiched between views of, more or less, the whole world, Nelson alternates finished paintings in his characteristic strong, bold style with authentically childlike crayon drawings done with his left hand—demonstrating a superb ability to evoke both grand and naïve effects. Moving, reverent, spiritual indeed."
-Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"Nelson’s vibrant signature illustrations rendered in pencil, oil, and watercolor breathe new meaning and life into this favorite Sunday school spiritual in which families, communities, and forces of nature are celebrated with lively images and inspiring scenes. The cover painting of an African-American boy against a colorful landscape beckons readers inside to discover the wonders of creation. With each page turn and line of verse, Nelson gives fresh, thought-provoking interpretations to the lyrics that will stir the imagination and spark discussion. For example, “He’s got my brothers and my sisters in His hands” depicts the boy, present throughout the book, holding a childlike drawing of people of different races and skin tones, suggesting the notion that all humanity should be viewed as “brothers and sisters.” The simple, repetitious flow of the words and the refrain make this an excellent read-aloud choice as well as a sing-along favorite. A moving, artistic celebration of our world and the people who share in its splendors."
-School Library Journal, starred review

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

He's Got the Whole World in His Hands 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Ed490 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Encouraged by the song, He¿s Got the Whole World in His Hands expresses how the Lord has the Earth ¿in His hands¿ and each person as well. The book reminds us of nature¿s beauty with its references to oceans, mountains and clouds. With simple straightforward writing and eye-catching paintings, this book is perfect for young readers as they will be able to follow along. The pictures also provide synergy and will help emergent readers. Children will enjoy this book as they can sing along with it.
kadirgroup on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is inspired by the folk song "He's got the whole world in his hands". Kadir Nelson puts this world known song to beautiful illustrations. Although the illustrations are magnificent and this book could be enjoyed by simply looking at the pictures, the story line will not keep readers attention, and this book would be enjoyed by listeners only once.
ababe92 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I will recommend this book to my students who seem like they are very interested in learning about music.
Mr_LLB More than 1 year ago
I tutor boys of color, ages 7-11, grades 2-5, and am constantly on the lookout for books that can be meaningful to them. The first boy that I shared this book with spontaneously began to sing it! He had learned it at his church. I purchased a second copy for a young academically challenged peer who played the cello in the end of the year strings concert. Both seemed to enjoy it. And there are so many pictures in it that looks like them. I remember singing this hymn in the sixties as part of the civil rights movement. As a 75-yr-old white male with a 50+ career in education/social work, it is a privilege to serve these boys. Their eagerness to learn to read is so rewarding.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The artwork will WOW you. My daughters love this book and love to look at the pictures as I sing the song to them.
Guest More than 1 year ago
We all know the words to this song. We've sung it since childhood and it brings back such nice memories of being a child. Mr. Kadir Nelson is an incredible artist and his pictures truly draw you in. I just had to buy this for my 3 yr old daughter yesterday. We don't get many books that has such great images. A must have book.