Written by Nick Dyer
Illustrated by Kelly Pousette
Peter Pauper Press 3/15/2019
32 Pages Age 4—8
. . DOUBLE DEBUT
Genre: Children’s Picture Book, Fiction
Themes: Small Things, Observing
“Littler things are everywhere, but they’re never just little things.”
A child notices everyday small things—from footprints to flowers, and berries to birds. What may seem like a small act to one, may be a lifesaving act to another—proving that even the littlest things in the world can have the biggest impact. (from jacket flap)
My favorite things are little things. I find them in my pockets, my shoes, and in my cereal bowl.
Why I like this book
A young girl goes about her day observing things, in particular the little things in her world. She sees the blue birds and squirrels in her tree and the little items she’s left in her pockets or finds in her shoe. As her day moves on, the young girl continues to make a point of seeing the littlest things in her world. She even notices when a small thing grows and becomes “humongous.” The young girl does more than just notice—the little things most people simply pass by—she helps when needed.
Little Things is a beautiful double debut. Both author Nick Dyer and artist Kelly Pousette have paid attention to the little things. Nick uses only the words he needs and no other, giving Kelly full control of the illustrations. This is not a small feat for a new writer who, as he writes, has characters and settings in mind. Kelly didn’t keep to the smallest things she could think of. She changes the sizes, sometimes in the same character.
Much of the illustrations have been cut from paper and, like the dragonflies, throw off natural shadows. Some spreads have out-of-focus areas, making the little thing of the girl’s interest pop off the page. This also helps young children find the little thing within the spread’s activity.
I like that the young girl does not simply notice a little thing and then move on to another. She takes an interested and often invested view of her world. Using binoculars, she can find little items that might otherwise make themselves scarce. The young girl counts her cats, giving young readers an activity they, too, can do. Without using the word, the girl notices perspective: a small stuffed animal can seem big when looking at its shadow and a huge airplane can seem small as it jets across the sky.
Young children will love Little Things. It will remind them to look closer at their own world and appreciate what is there and how they can “hide.” Sharp readers will notice how many of the animals (the turtle as one example), reappear on several pages. Sometimes it seems objects are where you don’t expect them to be. I swear I can see that turtle in one of the clouds.
Little Things is a gorgeous picture book about noticing and appreciating the little things in life. For Nick Dyer and Kelly Pousette, Little Things is a grand debut.
And sometimes little things, can become great big things . . . eventually.
The young girl takes pictures of a pair of adorably attentive baby deer . . . and again, after the duo have grown a bit . . . and eventually, when the deer are fully-grown adults. I also like when a format takes a twist, in this case with an extra fold over page that shows all three stages of the babies development on one three-page spread.
Illustrations: Rendered in watercolors and intricate cut paper.
Available at Amazon
LITTLE THINGS. Text Copyright © 2019 by Nick Dyer. Illustrations copyright © 2019 by Kelly Pousette. Published by Peter Pauper Press , White Plains, NY.
Copyright © 2019 by Sue Morris/Kid Lit Reviews. All Rights Reserved
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It’s always very important to look closely at the world. Once, at my old house, I found raw macaroni noodles back behind the dumpster. I ate one before Mom knew what was happening. #crunchy
Love and licks,
You don’t know how glad I was to see you ate the raw, dirty, germy, oh-so-horribly-ewwy, dumpster noodle and not your mom. Wasn’t sure at first. You sound so adult with those first few words. You confused me. Now I am grossed out. Jon, he is laughing. Chihuahuas have creepy laughs.