Penguin Random House: RHCB to Publish Picture Book Adaptation of THE BOOK OF JOY by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Random House Children’s Books will publish a picture book adaptation of the international bestseller The Book of Joy from Nobel Peace Prize winners His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the late Archbishop Desmond Tutu, THE LITTLE BOOK OF JOY, on September 27, 2022, it was announced today by Mallory Loehr, EVP & Publisher, Random House Books for Young Readers Group. The book will be published by Crown Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, and is the pair’s only collaboration for children. Using their childhood stories to show young readers how to find joy even in hard times, His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu reveal why sharing joy with others makes it grow.

“We are thrilled and honored that His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu created this book with us that brings their important message of joy directly to children,” said Loehr. “Particularly in light of the Archbishop’s passing, we are lucky to have this uplifting book that can inspire future generations of children to look at the world through his unique lens of wonder, generosity, and celebration.”


Dalai Lama and the late Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Photo Credit: Miranda Penn Turin

In THE LITTLE BOOK OF JOY, the two spiritual masters, along with collaborators Rachel Neumann and Douglas Abrams, tell a simple story, vibrantly brought to life by New York Times bestselling illustrator Rafael López, about the joy every child carries inside them—even when it sometimes hides–and how they can find it, keep it close, and grow it by sharing it with the world. Sprung from the friendship, humor, and deep affection between these holy men, THE LITTLE BOOK OF JOY is a reminder that joy is abundant—no matter what challenges we face—and has the power to transform the world around us even in the darkest of times.

“I’m grateful and honored to give visual voice to the stories of two luminaries of global peace. To remind children to seek joy because it can be found in unexpected places even in challenging times,” López said.

The Book of Joy has been translated into over forty languages and has sold over a million copies in the U.S. alone. Mission: Joy, a major documentary film inspired by The Book of Joy, was released in 2021 by an Academy Award–winning team. THE LITTLE BOOK OF JOY will now bring the authors’ message of joy to the youngest of readers. The book will be published simultaneously with Penguin UK and released as an ebook and as an audiobook from Listening Library, an imprint of Penguin Random House Audio.

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, is the spiritual leader of the Tibetan People and of Tibetan Buddhism. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 and the U.S. Congressional Gold Medal in 2006. The Dalai Lama travels extensively, promoting kindness and compassion, interfaith understanding, respect for the environment, and, above all, world peace. He lives in exile in Dharamsala, India.

Desmond Mpilo Tutu, the late Archbishop Emeritus of Southern Africa, became a prominent leader in the crusade for justice and racial reconciliation in South Africa. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 and the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009. Archbishop Tutu was regarded as a leading moral voice and an icon of hope. Throughout his life, he cared deeply about the needs of people around the world, teaching love and compassion for all.

Douglas Abrams is an author, editor, and literary agent. He is the founder and president of Idea Architects, a creative book and media agency helping visionaries to create a wiser, healthier, and more just world. Doug worked with Desmond Tutu as his cowriter and editor for over a decade. He lives in Santa Cruz, California.

Rachel Neumann is an author, editor, and senior literary agent at Idea Architects. She has worked with His Holiness the Dalai Lama for over a decade and lives in Oakland, California.

Rafael López is an internationally recognized illustrator, muralist, and artist. He is the illustrator of the #1 New York Times bestsellers The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson and Sonia Sotomayor’s Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You. His illustrations bring diverse characters to children’s books, and he is driven to produce and promote books that reflect and honor the lives of all young people. Rafael is the recipient of the Tomás Rivera Mexican American Children’s Book Award, three Pura Belpré Medals, and the Society of Illustrators Original Art Silver Medal. He has developed a dozen USPS postage stamps and empowers children and families to create community murals. He splits his time between San Diego and San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. Rafael is represented by literary agent Stefanie Sanchez von Borstel of Full Circle Literary.

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