Book review by
Linda Rahm-Crites, Common Sense Media
Stellaluna Book Poster Image
Coming-of-age story with natural science lesson.

Parents say

age 5+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Violence & Scariness

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Stellaluna is taken by a family of birds after an owl attacks her mother, knocking her out of her mother's grasp.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent Written byKristyn P. May 22, 2018

Too scary for my almost 5 year old

I thought this book was lovely but my daughter cried for an hour about the baby bat being separated from her mama. She was not comfortedby their reunion. I am s... Continue reading

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What's the story?

Warm, realistic illustrations enhance the antics of the baby bat's bird-like adventures. But Stellaluna has the most fun when she discovers the joys of batness! Janell Cannon combines her coming-of-age story with a lesson in natural science, introducing readers to the world of bats and birds.

Is it any good?

Children and adults alike respond to Janell Cannon's artwork; the luminous, full-page, color illustrations are realistically rendered and convey lots of scientific information. The premise of a bat trying to live with birds is humorous, fully exploited in illustrations. Some adults reading the book aloud, however, may find that the text lacks the vibrancy of the illustrations.

The lessons of self-acceptance and accepting others are demonstrated throughout the book: "Mama Bird told me I was upside down. She said I was wrong..." "Wrong for a bird, maybe, but not for a bat." One children's librarian described the book as a wonderful selection for read-aloud sessions with 4- and 5-year-olds, but noted that they "have to get into it." Before sharing the story, adult readers may want to spend some time introducing children to bats and setting the mood for a quiet, reflective story.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about pretending to be something you're not. Both species here try to act like each other. How is trying to act like a bird good for Stellaluna? In what ways is it harmful? What does she learn about love and friendship from the experience?

Book details

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