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When Stella Was Very, Very Small
ISBN: 9780888999061
Author: Gay, Marie-Louise
Publisher: Groundwood Books
Published: August 2009
Retail: $17.95    OUR PRICE: $2.99
     You Save 83%
Binding Type: Hardcover
Annotation: Marie-Louise Gay has gone back in time to answer the questions often asked by the children who read and love her "Stella" books. Where does Stella get her wild ideas? How big is Stella's imagination? What did Stella look like when she was small? How did Stella come to be the big sister to Sam? Although Gay didn't know what she would find when she started to explore Stella's childhood, she soon realized that when Stella was very small, she saw the world in her own unique way -- with wonder, curiosity, and the sense that everything is possible. Evocative watercolors and imaginative text make this one of the most endearing entries in the series.
Additional Information
Physical Information: 32 pages
Bargain Category: Early Elementary, Growing Up, Picture Books
Grade level(s): PreK, Kindergarten, 1st
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.
Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 2010 Spring)
Gay introduces her beloved protagonist as a baby, then a bigger kid, navigating her world. In her winsomely decked-out illustrations, size is a matter of perspective: Stella's "enormous Olympic-sized pool" is a bathtub. Although this is really a series of vignettes (all starting with the titular phrase), the book's considerable charms will appeal even to those unfamiliar with the adorable orange-haired moppet. Copyright 2010 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2009 July #1)

The ever-inquisitive, carrot-top heroine returns, this time with a peek at her early days: "When Stella was very, very small, words looked like ants running off the pages. Butterflies flew on the walls, and cups jumped off the tables, just like that!" reads Gay's text as Stella sits before a pile of books, crayon-scribbled butterflies gracing the walls. Stella's surroundings, which initially have an epic scale for her, become more manageable (though no less magic) as she ages. And "now that Stella is big" and "the ants in her book have become words," she can read to her little brother. Stella's dynamic world and big sister charisma will pay off for fans of the gentle series. Ages 2–5. (Aug.)

[Page 51]. Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2009 August)

PreS-Gr 2—This new offering in Gay's delightful series about inquisitive and imaginative Stella explores her vantage points from each developmental stage to date. As a crawler, she's eye to eye with a turtle. While her curly orange locks distinguish her from the reptile, the green attire and prone position suggest a mirror image. A goldfish and dog phase follow. Gay's sensitivity to the rich inner life of childhood flows into her art and language. As a toddler, Stella ascends to the top of the sofa, surveying "the whole world." A seven-rung ladder propped against the cushions suggests her perception of the adventure. When she is a preschooler, the words in her book "looked like ants running off the pages," and that's just how they appear. Gay's mixed-media scenes dance with the energy of scribbled butterflies on the walls, teetering objects, and a blanket-turned-turban that flaps as Stella braves the desert storm in the sandbox. When she becomes bigger, the turtle struggles to keep up with her brisk pace. Her yard is no longer a force with which to be reckoned, but rather an orderly place where she pursues entomology. As for her literacy skills, "the ants in her books have become words, and the words have become stories." Stella is pictured reading to little Sam (who's now wearing the green outfit). Subtle and sweet, yet full of life and humor, the child's world is a place kids will want to visit again and again.—Wendy Lukehart, Washington DC Public Library

[Page 75]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.