A Squiggly Story

Andrew Larsen
Mike Lowery

A young boy wants to write a story, just like his big sister. But there's a problem, he tells her. Though he knows his letters, he doesn't know many words. “Every story starts with a single word and every word starts with a single letter,” his sister explains patiently. “Why don't you start there, with a letter?” So the boy tries. He writes a letter. An easy letter. The letter I. And from that one skinny letter, the story grows, and the little boy discovers that all of us, including him, have what we need to write our own perfect story.

This picture book from award-winning author Andrew Larsen playfully and imaginatively explores a young child's process of learning to express himself. It promotes the idea that stories are available for everyone to tell, whatever way we can, and will inspire pre-readers to try writing stories of their own. The lively, fun illustrations by Mike Lowery incorporate story panels with dialogue bubbles, adding visual texture. Also helpful, the boy's story is shown both as he actually writes it --- with just a few letters, some punctuation marks and typographical symbols --- and as he imagines it. Celebrating self-expression, self-discovery and imagination, this book would enhance an early language arts lesson on writing, particularly on the parts of a story. It beautifully highlights the exciting worlds that are opened up when children begin to read and write. In a sweet touch, the boy and his sister model a close and supportive sibling relationship.

978-1-77138-016-4 | Sep 6, 2016
List Price: USD $18.99, CAD $21.99
4-color 9 x 10 32 pages
Grades: PreSchool To 2 / Ages: 3 to 7
978-1-77138-741-5 | Sep 6, 2016
List Price: USD $9.99, CAD $9.99

Educational Resources

Adult Directed

Awards & Reviews

“A positive tale of how a story can emerge organically from an inkling of an idea to an imaginative literary excursion ...”
— Kirkus Reviews - Starred Review, May 2016
“This fun and playful celebration of the squiggly line will inspire kids to flex their own creative writing muscles.”
— Quill & Quire, August 2016
“A Squiggly Story is a charming little book that may help first-time storytellers keep trying to write stories, even if they lack the ability to draw proper letterforms, let alone put a complete sentence together.”
— New York Times, August 2016
“This playful multilayered story about sparking the mind is loaded with opportunities for readers to consider different kinds of storytelling.”
— Booklist, September 2016
“A solid read-aloud for most any children's collection, but especially where writing is emphasized at an early age.”
— School Library Journal, October 2016
“... Larsen's text and Lowery's illustrations ... beautifully reveal the breadth and depth of meaning that even a few squiggles and swirls can have in a child's imagination.”
— Canadian Children's Book News, October 2016
2018 - Blue Spruce Award, Ontario Library Association, Short-listed
2018 - Picture This Recommendation List, WSRA Children's Literature Committee, Listed
2017 - CLEL Bell Award, Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy, Short-listed
2017 - Teachers' Choices Reading List, International Literacy Association, Winner
2017 - Best Books for Kids & Teens, Starred Selection, Canadian Children's Book Centre, Winner
2016 - Best Picture Books of 2016, Kirkus Reviews, Winner

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