Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

When Stella was very, very small

When Stella was very, very small

Marie-Louise Gay
Picture Book  Series
For ages 4 and up
Groundwood Books, 2009   ISBN: 0888999062

When Stella was little, she thought she was a turtle for a while. Then she thought that she was a goldfish. After this, she thought that she was a dog. When she climbed on the back of the couch in the living-room, she felt as if she could see “the whole world.” She could not open doors, and because she couldn’t read, “words looked like ants running off the pages.” The world outside was full of adventure and wonder. To Stella the cat seemed like a “ferocious man-eating tiger,” and once when it snowed it was as if “the whole world disappeared.”

Now Stella is older and doors are within her reach. The neighbor’s cat looks a lot smaller, and Stella is now able to read. In fact, she can read to her little brother Sam.

For readers who have enjoyed the earlier Stella and Sam books, this book will show them how Stella came to be the way she is. They will see that Stella has always been an imaginative and delightfully quirky little person. In addition, Stella’s experiences show readers that ones perception of the world changes as one grows. A tiger becomes a pet cat, ants on a page become words, and a little girl becomes a big sister.

When her warming text and her unique multimedia illustrations, Marie-Louise Gay has once again created a jewel of a book.