A Quiet Girl Reviews

School Library Journal ★ Starred Review

Cover: A Quiet Girl Author-Illustrator: Peter Carnavas Publisher: Pajama Press“A pale girl with free-flowing frizzy brown hair, Mary does not say much and when she does, she speaks quietly. She climbs trees to hang her recycled jug feeder, whispers to birds, and swings and cartwheels outdoors….Illustrations feature both full-page spreads filled with soft colors and expansive views of the outdoor world, and smaller illustrations in simultaneous succession with plenty of white space….VERDICT A quiet young girl in a noisy world, Mary shows her loud, busy family that listening allows for more to be heard. With suitable tips on the practice of mindfulness, this title will be a welcome addition to every picture book collection.”
—Ramarie Beaver, formerly at Plano P.L., TX

Click here to read the full review

Kirkus Reviews

“This gentle Australian import exhorts readers to listen, pay attention, and, sometimes, unplug…The delicate, sweet line illustrations present brown-haired Mary and her family with beige skin and also depict creative ideas for recycling plastic bottles. A spread with simple mindfulness tips concludes the book.

A cautionary tale about listening closely in order to discover the world’s pleasures.”

Click here to read the full review

Seattle Book Review

“We rated this book: 5/5 stars…Peter Carnavas has written a sweet story that will show youngsters that there is a lot be gained from being quiet and seeing and hearing all the beauty that is around us every day. The writing is simply lovely. His enchanting illustrations are the perfect companion to the story, with soft, soft colors and wonderful details. This is a winner. Do not miss it.”

Click here to read the full review

Youth Services Book Review

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

What did you like about the book? This sweet picture book centered on Mary, a quiet girl, is all about finding quiet in your home and world.

Mary loves nature and spends her time outside listening, looking and feeling all the life around her. Her loving family is noisier. Her brother loves playing with his toy trumpet and her parents are always telling her to speak up. And then one day, Mary cannot be found, but she was right there at home all the time, just being quiet.

At the end of the story, there is a section about mindfulness, including a few ideas on how to make it a part of your day.

This book is perfect for SEL, Social and Emotional Learning, the idea of finding joy in nature and being quiet is important as never before. The colors that the author used are muted but distinctive and fit the story perfectly, and the illustrations are fun and sweet….

To whom would you recommend this book? Anyone who needs a quiet moment will love this book….

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes!”
Maria Touet, Malden Public Schools, Malden, MA

Click here to read the full review

Sal’s Fiction Addiction

“The soothing artwork makes a perfect backdrop for Mary’s many discoveries. Plenty of white space keeps the focus on Mary and all that she loves in nature. Quietly beautiful, this tale offers a lesson in being mindful to all that surrounds us.”

Click here to read the full review

Sharon the Librarian

A Quiet Girl is a picture book that really resonated with me. I loved that the artwork was pastel and simple, not bright and shouting, so that it matched the personality of Mary….I think this book is a great family read, especially for those with a quiet family member or friend….I think the book can help readers understand the wonders that they might be missing, and to understand how other people might feel in a world that seems to be loud and in a hurry as a default.”

Click here to read the full review

Storywraps

“This book is an ode to quietness. Mary, a sweet little introverted girl, loves to experience that quietness. She focuses on the world around her and hears the beauty of a buzzing dragonfly, a lazy sleeping dog, and the rustling of leaves, just to name a few. She revels in and savers the minuscule things of life that she finds everywhere….

This Australian import encourages readers to practise mindfulness, disengage from the busyness of the world and be still. This enables them to listen and pay attention to the quieter things in their life. The illustrations are extremely well done and portray Mary as a very adorable little character. I highly recommend this book….Shhhhh!”

Click here to read the full review

Canadian Bookworm

“I love the illustrations in Carnavas’ books, both the way he draws nature and the quirky individualism of his human characters. But the other fantastic things about his books is the subtle, yet meaningful way in which he tackles larger issues and makes them real for kids….

The book includes a two page introduction to mindfulness at the end, giving some suggestions in how to be present in your world like Mary is in hers. I really like the last suggestion when they ask you to close your eyes and listen and identify the quietest sound that you can hear. Beautiful and simple to do and so, so satisfying.

Under the sound of my grandfather clock, the soft whish of my dehydrator in the kitchen, the hum of appliances, I can hear noises through the open window from outside, my cats’ quiet breathing as they sleep near me, and feel the breeze coming through the window.”

Click here to read the full review

Mr. Alex’s Bookshelf

“I think everyone can agree that the world is too loud. Especially during an election year, the noise can feel suffocating. And I’m an adult. How much more overwhelming must it feel to a child? Enter this sweet picture book by Peter Carnavas.

Frequently the heroines of our books and movies and TV shows are plucky, stubborn, sarcastic and brave. But the protagonist here is a quiet girl. Mary thinks quiet thoughts, steps quiet steps, and whispers quiet words. She is so quiet that sometimes she is overlooked. Rather than change however, she leans in to the quiet, noticing the soft, subtle sounds of nature, and eventually, she teaches her family to do the same.

The rhythmic, repetitive language acts as a soothing balm, as do the soft pastel illustrations….I barely needed the mindfulness tips Carnavas includes after the story concludes, although teachers and parents will find them helpful.”

Click here to read the full review