Little Blue has been lost for the longest time. Then Will finds her. All she wants to do is go home. Will wants to help her but it’s not easy. Her descriptions of the way home sound similar to Will’s way home, but as he brings her to the hills, the creek, the trees, family, they are not quite right. They cannot find the way to Little Blue’s home. Only when Will takes Little Blue to his home with Grandmother, do they find Little Blue’s home.
Gaye Chapman is both author and illustrator of Little Blue. From the four seasons of the front ‘end papers’ showing us how long Little Blue has been lost to the final endpaper detailing her return home, this is a beautiful book. The story is a simple one of a boy trying to help a lost girl find her way home. A small blue bird is on every page, guiding or accompanying the travelling pair. The girl’s way home and her home are by her account much grander than Will’s simple existence, yet he is the one who brings her home. She describes mountains, he describes hills. The reader is left to wonder at the accuracy of her description – perhaps she is exaggerating? On alternate pages Little Blue (in words and image) draws for Will a growing picture of her way home, The sketches provide clues for the reader as to the ending. These alternate openings have blue borders, as if to differentiate the world from the differing points of view. Will and Little Blue progress their way across the pages, emerging from a tunnel of trees near Will’s home. At the conclusion, both Little Blue and Will are safely home again. Recommended for 4+.
Little Blue, by Gaye Chapman
Little Hare 2008