When Stella Was Very, Very Small
Words and art by Marie-Louise Gay
When Stella was very small things seemed huge and unfamiliar. Words were like ants, the sandbox like a desert, the couch as big as a mountain. But now that Stella is big things are different. Words are readable, she can take care of her pets, she can share what she’s learned with her little brother.
I love this book so much!
The whole series of Stella books are sweet. A beautiful sibling relationship and a sense of joy and wonder permeates them. The art is realistic enough that we get a good sense of Stella’s world, but simple enough that it feels cute and not overwhelming.
One of my favorite parts in When Stella Was Very, Very Small is that it could have been a book about her imagination and creativity when she was small but now that she’s a bit bigger things have purpose and her world starts transforming into facts and reality.
And it’s not.
Stella knows she’s not a goldfish and the cat next door isn’t really a tiger, but that doesn’t take away from her imagination and her play. Age only changes the ways it is expressed. Wonder still exists regardless of how much she’s grown or learned, and I think that’s a good reminder for all of us no matter how big we are.
This is a fun, nostalgic kind of read for adults and big kids and is also short and sweet and enjoyable for any kid old enough to not rip paper pages (2 1/2 to 3+).