Little Owl Lost

Little Owl Lost

4.4 5
by Chris Haughton

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From a debut author-illustrator! What if a little owl fell from his nest? A reassuring story for the very young told with whimsy and simple, vibrant artwork.

Uh-oh! Little Owl has fallen from his nest and landed with a whump on the ground. Now he is lost, and his mommy is nowhere to be seen! With the earnest help of his new friend Squirrel, Little Owl goes

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From a debut author-illustrator! What if a little owl fell from his nest? A reassuring story for the very young told with whimsy and simple, vibrant artwork.

Uh-oh! Little Owl has fallen from his nest and landed with a whump on the ground. Now he is lost, and his mommy is nowhere to be seen! With the earnest help of his new friend Squirrel, Little Owl goes in search of animals that fit his description of Mommy Owl. But while some are big (like a bear) or have pointy ears (like a bunny) or prominent eyes (like a frog), none of them have all the features that make up his mommy. Where could she be? A cast of adorable forest critters in neon-bright hues will engage little readers right up to the story’s comforting, gently wry conclusion.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
By sticking to simple shapes and a bold palette, Haughton has created a debut that reads like a tattered old favorite. A single half-page shows Little Owl dozing off in his nest, then--once it’s turned--bouncing softly to the forest floor. The animals who find Little Owl are flat, stylized creatures in jewel colors, but their eyes convey a wealth of feeling. Squirrel peers at Little Owl, his paws clasped in concern, his neck stretched out quizzically. “My mommy is VERY BIG,” says Little Owl. “Yes! Yes! I know! I know!” says Squirrel. “Follow me.... Here she is. Here’s your mommy.” Squirrel points to an enormous teal bear, staring befuddled at readers. A few more cases of mistaken identity ensue before locating Little Owl’s mother (careful readers will have noticed her seeking out her progeny). With instinctive skill, Haughton uses spreads of the forest to establish atmosphere and set up jokes, then delivers punch lines with spot illustrations that zero in on the animals’ dopey but lovable expressions. A promising first outing. Ages 2-up. (Aug.)
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
On the first double page, Little Owl and his mother are asleep atop a tree, but Little Owl is leaning over. We turn the half page to see his mother alone, as, "Uh-oh!" down falls Little Owl. He bumps to the ground. He tells a passing squirrel that he is lost. Squirrel says he will find his mommy, and asks what she looks like. When told, "VERY BIG," Squirrel leads him to a bear. Next Little Owl specifies pointed ears. But the rabbit Squirrel finds is not right either, nor are Frog's "big eyes." But luckily Frog knows his mommy, who is looking everywhere for him, and takes him to her open arms. They all go up to her nest for cookies, but then...Pencils and digital media create highly decorative animals in flat solid colors. In particular the owls, with huge eyes and rows of chest decorations, cry out to be stuffed animals. Check the end pages. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS—Haughton's simple story line, retro colors, and folksy artwork bring a fresh view to an often-used plot. Little Owl falls from the nest while sleeping. He meets a squirrel who promises to help him find his mother, but Squirrel uses each descriptor ("Big Eyes," "Pointy Ears") to find the wrong animal. Finally, they meet Frog, who says: "I know your mommy....Your mommy's looking everywhere for you." Owl and owlet are reunited, and the new friends are invited up for cookies. The spare, repetitive text is just right for a preschool audience, and will quickly have young listeners chiming in with "That's not my mommy." Haughton's pitch-perfect use of language flows smoothly to the satisfying end. The pencil and digitally rendered illustrations, which have the feel of a mix of woodblock and cut-paper collage, are done in intense, saturated colors of olive, red, orange, fuchsia, blue, and yellow. Little Owl is black with blue and purple accents and bright eyes, and stands out boldly on both the color-saturated pages and the stark white ones. The art does a wonderful job of conveying movement and encouraging page turns. This little gem will work equally well in storytimes or one-on-one.—Amy Lilien-Harper, The Ferguson Library, Stamford, CT

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Product Details

Candlewick Press
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
10.00(w) x 10.30(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
2 - 5 Years

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Little Owl Lost 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My 18 month old and 2 1/2 year old grandchildren love this book. Every time we go to the library it is their first choice. They ask to have it read and then pour over the pages after memorizing it and "read" it to themselves. Fun book for very young children.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My 22 month old daughter has this book memorized.  It's amazing.  For her age kid, the story is perfect.  You kind of have to act it out but there's a lot of potential there.  She could tell the story on her own.  She loves all the guesses about who the mommy is and the descriptions of the mommies (she's BIG, like this!), she yells along with "I know! I know! Here's your mommy!" and is overjoyed when the real mommy owl is found in the end.  She also points out the mommy owl searching for the baby owl in the shadows on every page.  This is one of her favorite books ever.
ReadingMomLR More than 1 year ago
We checked this book out at the library due to a suggestion from the staff. My daughter loved and wanted me to buy it. We read it 4 times the first night. Great Book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Haughton, Chris. LITTLE OWL LOST. Candlewick Press. In our world, understatement is becoming a lost art, and elegance a disappearing quality. This book has both, in Haughton's art and in the many production details not immediately noticeable. Block gloss letters form a vertical column above the main character's head on the cover, picked out in white in contrast to the quiet olive green empty matte background. A different design is on the rear cover, showing Owl atop his nest. Opening the book, a viewer notices the restrained endpapers in two shades of blue featuring simplified, decorative tree silhouettes. Close examination shows the back endpapers are similar but not identical, an example of the careful approach to exemplary design qualities. The half title page repeats the column of lettering, only this time in the olive green of the cover background, above the single figure of Owl facing into the rest of the book. The double spread title page introduces a vibrant new color, orange, with the olive green background to provide continuity. The action starts on the opening wordless, double spread, where we see mother and baby depicted in shades which are similar in intensity to the colors on the endpapers, but in this different tonality. A half page turns to reveal that sleepy baby has indeed bounced off his nest and then bumped along until he meets an inquisitive squirrel who tries to be helpful in reuniting the lost baby with his mother. On the search, other silhouettes of bear, rabbit, and different tree shapes add interesting complexity. Once again the design elements are worth noticing: the tree trunks provide strong rhythmic vertical accents. Throughout, large areas of highly saturated plain color or of the white paper focus viewer's attention on the design quality of the various animals. None of these turn out to be the owl's mother, despite the squirrel's good intentions. Finally a frog joins in the search, to help bring the missing mother and child back together. On that double spread, mother owl's comforting wings are stretched across the gutter to enfold her child. The exaggerated scale of the mother owl compared to the size of her baby emphasizes the strength of her comfort. All's well as mother and baby owl and their guests, squirrel and frog, enjoy cookies in the nest. Or is all well? On the last wordless page, it seems perhaps baby, precariously close to the nest's edge, has begun to doze off again, which precipitated the action at the beginning. Ludwig Mies van der Rohe's maxim, "less is more," is certainly exemplified here. The bold, clean-edged, un-modulated saturated colors and bold use of "empty" space make for a dramatic presentation. The challenge for teachers and librarians will be to help children appreciate a book which doesn't scream aloud for attention. John Warren Stewig Carthage College For addition reviews go to
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Perhaps I am a simpleton, and the close examination of endpapers is beyond me, but I found this book to be very boring. This seems to me to be a case of style over substance. The basic story of an animal looking for its mother has been done many times, so it would have to be the illustrations that make this stand out. These unfortunately are typical of a certain over-designed look found in some children's books these days. If you read a lot of children's books you will know what I mean, and you will know whether you will enjoy this or not. My daughter (she is 2) and I did not.