When You Were Small

Overview

When father puts young Henry to bed he always says "Dad, tell me about when I was small." His father complies, telling Henry how, when he was little, he used to be so tiny that he could take his pet ant out for a walk on a leash! What's more, he got his hair combed with a toothbrush and was such a little boy that he could even fit in his father's shirt pocket. Henry was so small that his father's original name for him, Hieronymous, wouldn't fit.

An enchanting, comic bedtime ...

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Overview

When father puts young Henry to bed he always says "Dad, tell me about when I was small." His father complies, telling Henry how, when he was little, he used to be so tiny that he could take his pet ant out for a walk on a leash! What's more, he got his hair combed with a toothbrush and was such a little boy that he could even fit in his father's shirt pocket. Henry was so small that his father's original name for him, Hieronymous, wouldn't fit.

An enchanting, comic bedtime story that can make even the smallest child feel big, When You Were Small is the perfect book for children in a hurry to grow up.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
O'Leary's debut features a robin's-egg blue cover and a retrospective title that recalls Milne's When We Were Very Young. Morstad's slightly clumsy ink drawings and drop caps, daintily tinted with watercolor and airy with negative space, update the work to somewhere nearer midcentury; with its large format and minimal color, this paper-over-board book could have been published in 1960 as easily as today, and homespun sketches of a wooden ruler and old-fashioned bathroom supplies only compound the anachronism. The narrative itself cultivates an appreciation for the absurd. Every night, a boy named Henry says to his father, "Tell me about when I was small." Deadpan recollections follow, each accompanied by a literal illustration of a much smaller Henry. "When you were small we used to give you baths in the teapot," his father explains, and the image pictures a boy about to hop into a kettle, a stray sock draped over the handle. "When you were small you wore a thimble for a hat," says his father, and readers see a finger-size Henry, his eyes hidden under the brim of a thimble and a needle-sword hanging from his belt. As in Stuart Little, a sepia-tinted image of tiny Henry with his full-size parents sets the scale. This sequence posits a straight-faced game of hyperbole ("When you were small we took the toy castle out of the aquarium and you were king of it") that may well please children of many generations. Ages 3-6. (May) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature - Carolyn Mott Ford
Henry says the same thing every night when he and his dad have a chat: "Tell me about when I was small." And so his dad does, with fanciful tales such as those many parents enjoy making up as bedtime stories. The illustrations, like his dad's responses, are imaginative yet simple. The young boy is endearing in all the settings showing what was happening when he was small. According to his dad, Henry had a pet ant that could be walked on a leash while Henry himself took rides on the back of the cat. He took baths in the teapot and slept in Dad's left slipper with a teabag as a pillow. He wore a thimble as a hat and used a ruler as a toboggan. As Dad recounts all of this, Henry begins to wonder and he questions whether the stories are true. "‘Well,' says his dad, ‘don't you remember?'" Parents will enjoy reading this book to the little ones who believe they are not so little any longer and it invites kids to let their imaginations soar. Reviewer: Carolyn Mott Ford
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3-Each night, Henry asks his dad to tell him about when he was small, and his father relates how very small he really was: "-we used to give you baths in the teapot-," and "-we took the toy castle out of the aquarium and you were king of it." This is obviously an enjoyable nighttime ritual and it always ends with the child asking, "`Dad, is all that true?' `Well,' says his dad, `don't you remember?'" The minimal text is accompanied by delicate illustrations. Subtle coloring and ample white space add to the book's tranquil feel. A lovely title to share one-on-one, and sure to start many family rituals.-Wendy Woodfill, Hennepin County Library, Minnetonka, MN Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781894965361
  • Publisher: Simply Read Books
  • Publication date: 3/28/2006
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 643,921
  • Age range: 2 - 5 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.10 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

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