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Stuart Little

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E.B. White's classic novel about one small mouse on a very big adventure!

Stuart Little is no ordinary mouse. Born to a family of humans, he lives in New York City with his parents, his older brother George, and Snowbell the cat. Though he's shy and thoughtful, he's also a true lover of adventure.

Stuart's greatest adventure comes when his best friend, a beautiful little bird named Margalo, disappears from her nest. Determined to track her down, Stuart ventures away from home for the very first time in his life. He finds adventure aplenty. But will he find his friend?

131 pages, Office Product

First published January 1, 1945

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About the author

E.B. White

116 books2,627 followers
Elwyn Brooks White was a leading American essayist, author, humorist, poet and literary stylist and author of such beloved children's classics as Charlotte's Web, Stuart Little, and The Trumpet of the Swan. He graduated from Cornell University in 1921 and, five or six years later, joined the staff of The New Yorker magazine. He authored over seventeen books of prose and poetry and was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1973.

White always said that he found writing difficult and bad for one's disposition.

Mr. White has won countless awards, including the 1971 National Medal for Literature and the Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal, which commended him for making “a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children.”

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5 stars
42,162 (34%)
4 stars
38,824 (31%)
3 stars
30,821 (25%)
2 stars
8,243 (6%)
1 star
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 3,518 reviews
Profile Image for karen.
3,979 reviews170k followers
November 18, 2019
uh- oh - someone just lost two stars. i remember liking this book when i read it as a child, and i loved trumpet of the swan and charlotte's web like no other, so i just sense-memoried this into 4 stars. now that i reread it for my paper, it gets what it deserves. it is no good. it is inexplicably bad. and i've since learned that the ending on this was rushed because e.b. white was a hypochondriac who was convinced he was about to die and wanted to get this out to the publishers before that happened. and then it did. 40 years later. but that doesn't excuse the beginning or the middle of the book, both equally atrocious. the premise is disgusting, the characters are either delusional or petty or just plain jerks, the story is flimsy, the central conflict is who-caresish. and then there's this, about e.b. white: "He never stopped loving New York, calling it "a riddle in steel and stone," but he also prophetically saw the vulnerability of the city: "A single flight of planes no bigger than a wedge of geese can quickly end this island fantasy, burn the towers, crumble the bridges, turn the underground passages into lethal chambers, cremate millions... Of all targets New York has a certain clear priority. In the mind of whatever perverted dreamer might loose the lightning, New York must hold a steady, irresistible charm." so now i blame him for 9/11, too. rereading charlotte's web and trumpet of the swan was great - they can keep their five stars. but this was as bad as 9/11, and the overripe pluot i just ate. (i am procrastinating from paper - must return)

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Profile Image for kingshearte.
409 reviews14 followers
February 2, 2010
Strange little book. The premise is one I enjoy, as I've always been somewhat fascinated by unusually small things, and the notion of experiencing the world from the perspective of a very small being. So I loved all the little contraptions and whatnot created to help Stuart function in a human-sized house.

However, the book kind of felt like White didn't really know what he was doing with it or where he was going with it. The first half of it consists of largely unrelated, episodic adventures around New York, and then the second half develops a somewhat more cohesive plot as he embarks on his quest to find Margalo. Only barely more cohesive, though, as it too consists of a series of basically unrelated escapade along his journey.

And then it just ends. No, seriously. It's like White just stopped writing in the middle of the story. We don't find out if Stuart finds Margalo, or anything about what happens to Margalo. We don't know how the Little family reacts to Stuart's departure, or if he ever makes it back. We just know he sets out on this quest, and that's it. It really feels unfinished, and I actually checked to see if maybe he died in the middle of writing it or something, but no. It was written earlier than the other two books included in this volume, so I don't know. Maybe he got bored? In any case, it's kind of bizarre.

Also contributing to my sense that he didn't really know what he was doing with this story is the fact that, for the most part, aside from the fact that Stuart is a mouse born to a human family, everything is basically, well, reasonably plausible. The things his father builds for him make sense, the fact that he wears doll clothes makes sense, and even his sailing of the model ship is conceivable. Someone could be crazy enough to build a model ship that is fully functional, to the point of being crewable if only you could find a crew small enough. But then there's the little car. OK, there again, maybe you could be crazy enough to build a model car that actually runs on gasoline and everything. But this thing has an invisibility button. WTF? All of a sudden, this bit of complete outlandishness is just dropped into the story. And for no particularly good reason. The car goes invisible in its owner's office, crashes around for a while, and that's it. From that point on, it's just Stuart's little car. Never goes invisible again. And how it becomes invisible is also entirely unexplained. Weird.

His encounter with Harriet, the two-inch-tall girl is also fairly random and fairly pointless. They meet, try to have a date, it doesn't really work, she goes home, and he continues his journey. What was the point of that? I'd have made her another mouse person like Stuart, and maybe they could continue to journey together or something. Instead we just had this random meeting (which was another instance of unexplained phenomenon - why is she two inches tall, but otherwise a regular person? If we're being asked to accept that Stuart's situation is conceivable, why not just stick with that? Why mess with it like this?), for no particular reason.

Also, I know it's a children's book, and a fairly old one at that, but let's have some standards of literature here. Frankly, I expect better than the following from a man who's written his own bloody book about grammar:

[Stuart:] whipped off his cap, lay down on his stomach, and dipped up some of the cool refreshing drink, using his cap as a dipper.
"That's very refreshing," remarked Stuart. "There's nothing like a long, cool drink in the heat of the day, when you're travelling."

Really? You feel the need to repeat that it's a cool, refreshing drink two sentences right in a row? Really? Maybe I'm overreacting, but that just seemed like really bad, lazy writing.

Anyway. It was cute, but frankly, I don't know that I would recommend it, due pretty much entirely to the totally bizarre and abrupt way it ends. I just don't see the point of reading a story with no discernible plot arc or resolution of any kind.
Profile Image for Bionic Jean.
1,228 reviews1,063 followers
February 7, 2023
Stuart Little is a children's novel from 1946, by Elwyn Brooks White, who was also the author of the more famous "Charlotte's Web". However Stuart Little is a bit of a period piece, rather than a true classic.

Stuart Little is a talking mouse who lives in New York City with his human parents, older brother George, and Snowbell the cat. He is a rather pompous sort of fellow, dressing in either a sailor suit or formal clothes, and affecting English manners - except when he speaks the American slang of the time. He forms a friendship with a beautiful little white bird called Margalo, until to Stuart's dismay she disappears, to fly North. The idea of tracking her down appeals to Stuart's spirit of adventure, so he sets off to find her.

This the cue for all Stuart's rip-roaring adventures. They include quite a lot about canoes and boating, a romance with another tiny little female, and a jolly interlude where Stuart stands in for an absent teacher. The stories are told over 15 short chapters. The intext line illustrations are by Garth Williams.

This was E.B. White's first foray into children's literature, and he claimed it was inspired by a dream. He was awarded the Laura Ingalls Wilder medal both for this novel plus "Charlotte's Web" in 1970.

If you enjoy gently humorous and whimsical tales with an old-fashioned feel and type of children's hero, you may enjoy this book, but it is not likely to appeal to a modern child, though it is written in an amusing, chatty style. Here is the beginning,

"When Mrs. Frederick C. Little's second son arrived, everybody noticed that he was not much bigger than a mouse. The truth of the matter was, the baby looked very much like a mouse in every way. He was only about two inches high; and he had a mouse's sharp nose, a mouse's tail, a mouse's whiskers, and the pleasant shy, manner of a mouse. Before he was many days old he was not only looking like a mouse but acting like one too - wearing a gray hat and carrying a small case."

There have been two family comedy films based loosely on the book, featuring partly live action and partly computer animation. There has also been a television series.

So is the book comic? Not in modern terms, although at its best it is droll. Is it an allegory? Perhaps. The little white bird clearly symbolises freedom. It's also all about learning to have courage, and developing as an individual; in a sense it's a coming-of-age story. The idea is appealing, hence the adaptations.

A personnified mouse-hero is a staple of children's fiction, both classic and contemporary. However, perhaps Stuart Little has now outgrown his quaint and rather twee beginnings.
Profile Image for Diane.
1,080 reviews2,656 followers
August 28, 2013
A friend mentioned that this was one of her favorite children's books, and I realized I had never read it. It didn't pack the emotional wallop that Charlotte's Web did, but it's still a fun, sweet story.

Stuart Little was born only two inches high and he looked like a mouse, but luckily his parents and big brother loved him anyway. The book is a series of Stuart's adventures, such as the time he got stuck in the window shade, or when he won a sailboat race in Central Park, or when he befriended an injured bird, or when he volunteered to be a substitute teacher. At the end of the book Stuart sets off in a model car to find his friend the bird, who had flown away. The story ends with him heading north: "There's something about north ... something that sets it apart from all other directions. A person who is heading north is not making any mistake."

The tales were nice, but they weren't as cohesive or as compelling as the story of Wilbur the pig and Charlotte the spider. What bumped Stuart Little up to 4 stars was White's writing, which had some lovely passages and details. During the sailboat race, for example, White explains that the West Wind "had come halfway across America to get to Central Park."

Or take the bird, Margalo, that Stuart befriends. Stuart asked where Margalo came from. "I come from fields once tall with wheat, from pastures deep in fern and thistle; I come from vales of meadowsweet, and I love to whistle." What a description!

I also liked the talk Stuart had with his students. In trying to figure out what to teach, the children say they usually study spelling. Stuart said, "A misspelled word is an abomination in the sight of everyone. I consider it a very fine thing to spell words correctly and I strongly urge every one of you to buy a Webster's Collegiate Dictionary and consult it whenever you are in the slightest doubt. So much for spelling. What's next?"

Stuart Little was E.B. White's first children's book, published in 1945. Charlotte's Web was published in 1952, and Mr. White learned a lot about writing beloved children's books in those seven years.
Profile Image for Jamie.
142 reviews239 followers
March 28, 2013
Stuart Little is one of those books I used to recommend to parents when I worked in a bookstore. I liked “Charlotte’s Web,” and it’s undisputedly a classic. Robin William’s character in “Mrs. Doubtfire” reads it to baby Natalie (while this isn’t necessarily a ringing endorsement it certainly attests to the classical status of this book). And so, when baby Alice and I were choosing our book from the library last week it was between Stuart and something more modern like Funke. Because Alice was born in New York and I liked the idea of her being able, unlike me until now, to say she’d read Stuart Little, the classic children’s novel, I opted for Stuart.

My question is this: How many people out there HAVE actually read it? Having finished the book, I must say, I’m not sure I’d exactly recommend it. It’s not a bad book, but it’s not the best I’ve read, either. The book is episodic, which is fine. In fact, generally I prefer episodic for young children. They can take a snooze or have a distracted session and then still pick back up again and know the characters, but this one just seemed episodic…AND disorganized. I don’t think that’s overly critical. The book is creative, it’s well written, it’s interesting--but it is strange and chaotic and above all, disorganized.

I think most people are fluent on the over all plot: Stuart Little is a mouse born to a well-to-do family of New Yorkers living in a two story apartment on (I think) the upper east side. Despite being slightly over two inches, Stuart is afforded his own room, which holds his bed, made out of a matchbox, and he enjoys sailing. Stuart doesn’t seem to have a formal education, but instead sets out upon rather manly, solo adventures at the tender (or ancient, it’s hard to gage for a mouse) age of 7, following meeting Margalo—a brown bird with a dash of yellow who sort of speaks in rhyme and takes solace in the Little family’s Boston Fern following some sort of accident.

While it might be problematic that Stuart has fallen in love (and it’s never completely confirmed he’s “in love,” but crush seems too mild) with someone outside his own species, it’s never really addressed, mostly, I assume, because Stuart, like so many men in the 1940s, keeps rather buttoned up about his personal affairs. Mostly he watches Margalo and thinks nice thoughts about (her?) it.

And, though most of Stuarts “adventures” seem to fall in account of Margalo’s abrupt departure from the Little’s home, there are a few things that happen before. Stuart attempts to sail “The Wasp,” on the Central Park Boat Pond, but runs into a squall and ultimately collision at sea with another ship, “The Lillian B. Womrath,” but he does make friends with the owner of “The Wasp,” a surgeon dentist whom becomes something of a mentor (and supplier of miniature vessels). Stuart also overcomes an encounter with Snowbell, the Little family cat—or perhaps it is actually an encounter with the Little Family’s rolling blinds, but either way, Stuart escapes.

The aspects of the story I found troubling, or strange came later, once Margalo “flies the coup,” with Stuart in her wake. On his way out of town Stuart visits his friend the surgeon dentist, who offers him a bright yellow car that runs on “five drops of gasoline.” Fair enough, I say—a yellow miniature car from a man that already likes model ships—but here’s the kicker, even for 1943—the yellow car has an “invisibility switch.” Now, this is no Harry Potter, people—we’re not ensconced in magic. In fact, while the aspect of Stuart’s lineage is strange, it’s not presented as magical so much as just…maybe something that happens (as the book later presents the character of Harriet Ames, who is not a mouse born to regular-sized rich people, but a tiny but perfectly proportioned woman born to rich people).

So we now have mouse with a tiny car that can be invisible. But Stuart accidentally hits the starter button while the car is invisible and wrecks it—sad, but not the weirdest part. Astoundingly, the next morning he is still able to drive the car, which apparently the dentist has made repairs to the night before. And Stuart doesn’t drive it invisible, instead he drives it, on main New York Streets, in full view.

There are also a lot of people that seem to sit on curbs or in ditches. Perhaps this frequently happened in the 40s, but certainly it took us by surprise. Stuart generally encounters people, like himself, that are affluent or at least well to do in the gutters. Before leaving New York he meets a school superintendent who’s down in the dumps because he’s got to find a substitute for the day. Stuart volunteers, stopping first at a doll shop to by the perfect scholarly ensemble for the occasion. Decked out in tweeds Stuart arrives and keeps decorum in the schoolroom, despite being so small. And, while decorum is well and good, Stuart also decides to forgo the lesson plans and typical subjects like math and science in lieu of a heated discussion about being Chairman of the World and what laws could be universal (among the solidly “good” things presented are “the smell of a baby’s neck if it’s mother keeps it tidy,”). Once Stuart gets his fill of the discussion he splits, heading back to his tiny yellow car and leaving the city for northern skies and perhaps, if he’s lucky, Margalo.

But Stuart again, somewhat conveniently meets another man in the gutter, this time near Ames Crossing (in Connecticut, it seems). The man suggests Stuart meet Harriet Ames, who is also small and well dressed. Stuart doesn’t seem too interested at first, but when he sees Harriet at the post office he hides and all thoughts of Margalo temporarily fly out the window. Instead he goes about arranging the perfect date with Miss Ames, including a tiny canoe and ice-cream spoon paddles.

But when everything goes wrong on the date—it rains, the canoe gets messed up by some area children and the spoons are destroyed (Stuart seems most distracted by a string that has been tied to the toy canoe, making it clearly appear as what it is—a toy), Stuart is unable to recover. The cool Harriet shrugs and asks if perhaps they can go on and enjoy the date, rumpled canoe and rain, but Stuart is too worked up. In the end Harriet goes home to dinner and Stuart resumes his quest for Margalo.

Why the intense play by play, you ask? Well, because it’s somewhat astounding, isn’t it? A conversation and stint as a teacher and discussion on chairman of the world, a date with a tiny woman (let alone her existence?) and a potentially invisible car—that’s a lot of plot action! But, then it’s just…gone as Stuart leaves Ames Crossing and returns his northern quest. However, he does meet a telephone repairman (sitting in a ditch, again, leading me to believe the world was once quieter, easier and workers allowed these “breaks”) who tells him a northern quest is never a bad choice.

And the book ends. Just like that. Frankly, my head was still spinning at what a jerk Stuart seemed to be during his date. I was so shocked I even found myself checking to see if I missed some pages, but no. So I came out of this book not really very fond of Stuart Little. I mean, it’s neat he’s a mouse making the way in a big world, and I really admire his need for well-suited clothing to complement any occasion, but he just wasn’t a very nice guy/mouse. He sort of has weird illusions of grandeur and come off as a poor communicator. Hopefully Alice and I will have better luck with our next book, “The BFG.”

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Profile Image for Leo.
4,311 reviews389 followers
January 17, 2022
The swedish version I read had illustrations by Jenny Berggren and they was so lovely to look at and definitely added to the story. Although I didn't quite enjoy this as much as I thought. The premise is unique ad a quite fun one but didn't get attached to the story overall
Profile Image for Sophia.
2,022 reviews185 followers
January 31, 2022
Actual rating 3.8 stars.
This was another story I grew up watching.
I loved that there were moments I could instantly bring to mind (such as the washing machine scene) but there were other parts I was less familiar with. Like Margalo (she was in the second film - which I watched significantly less than the first).

Anyway, the last quarter is where the story turns almost unrecognisable.
It was great that a story I thought I knew so well had so many unknowns!

In saying that, I wasn’t a huge fan of the fact Stuart ran off, without telling his loving family what he was doing nor did we see him try to contact them in any way.

I’m of two minds about the ambiguous(?) ending.
I can see what White was going for but I'm not a huge fan of open endings.

Besides the ending, I thought this novel was well-paced and I felt compelled to continue reading.
Profile Image for bup.
634 reviews64 followers
December 6, 2007
This is the first book that ever blew my mind - by far my favorite children's novel. One thing I look for in a book, I've realized, is a knockout ending - a book better have a good payoff.

I don't want to spoil the ending here, but when my ten-year-old self got there, I couldn't believe it. How could E.B. White leave it like that? How can he leave so much unanswered? Moreover, how could he do that and still have it be so powerful and work so effectively?

I still am moved every time I read the last few pages (and sometimes still cry. That's right. I'm a sensitive, modern, secure man), and the last sentence may be my favorite in literature - better than "'Tis a far, far better thing I do...."
Profile Image for Sheila Beaumont.
1,102 reviews144 followers
April 8, 2019
I missed out on this as a child, but I'm glad I finally got around to reading this delightful tale of the intelligent, brave, kind mouse-child. I was surprised that it ended so abruptly, but since Stuart loves adventure so much, I guess it suits him. My favorite chapter was the one where he teaches school. The story is enhanced by Garth Williams' lovely illustrations.
Profile Image for Asghar Abbas.
Author 4 books188 followers
January 29, 2018

Excellent. How children's book should be. Lessons to be learned from an unlikely hero.
Pure magic. Pure fun. Pure adventure. There was this scene where Stuart teaches a classroom full of kids; that was a touch of genius, pure gold. The ending was very whimsical, I liked it. No way its movie adaption could ever touch this fine work of art.
Profile Image for Hayat.
570 reviews171 followers
January 14, 2018
I'm just glad I didn't read this book as a child or the idea that Mrs Little gave birth to a mouse, and everyone thinks it's strange but perfectly natural, would've really freaked me out enough to ask my parents awkward questions.
Profile Image for Jason Koivu.
Author 7 books1,228 followers
May 23, 2013
Almost as soon as the day he was born Stuart Little was asking for brandy and smokes. Did Mrs. Little birth a grown man, ala http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pr216H... ??? No, she birthed a mouse, apparently.

These are tall tales of a rather short stature, but that doesn't diminish their enjoyment. In his clean, straight forward style E. B. White laid down a loosely connected collection of stories about a charming little guy in a big world, using size to some good comic effect through out.

On the downside, Stuart Little lacks the pathos and cohesiveness of White's most famous work, Charlotte's Web, and the ending trails off in a puff of cliff-hanging whimsy. Ah well, not everything you produce can be your best.
Profile Image for Dolly.
Author 1 book643 followers
February 21, 2018
When I was a child I absolutely adored Charlotte's Web. I read it over and over again and I absolutely adored the animated film (the original, of course.) I also loved The Trumpet of the Swan and read that several times as well.

But thinking back, I don't remember ever reading this book before. I knew the basic concept of the plot and the movie version of the tale is well-known. But for some reason, this book never really stuck with me. Perhaps I started it and never finished it. I just don't remember. Now I know why.

Our girls really wanted to read this book, so we borrowed it from our local library. The narrative was a bit long and the overall feel of the book was rather old fashioned, but considering the story was originally published in 1945, it's easy to see why.

Still, even with the excitement of the boat race and the invisible car, the story just doesn't have the charm or the sentiment of Mr. White's other stories. It has such a melancholy, almost depressing feel to it and it ends so abruptly.

The illustrations are nice, and help to add to the old fashioned feel of the story, but they don't help the overall downcast ambience of the story. I was especially disappointed by the conclusion of the interaction between Stuart and Harriet.

Somehow I felt like this tale was an indictment of society and a pronouncement of the difficulties in life. At least the final sentence of the story ends on a bright note (see quotes below.)

We read this book in the span of a week and then followed it up by watching the 1999 movie and comparing the differences in the stories. The two couldn't be more different, but it was interesting to discuss how movies can really change the nature of a story. Our oldest liked them both, but preferred the book.

We also talked about how the original animated movie for Charlotte's Web more closely resembled the story. (And that we should probably watch the remake, which I think I'd love since Julia Roberts is in it, but I just know that I will have an unfair prejudice against it since no one could ever be as good of a Templeton the rat as Paul Lynde was.)

Our youngest said that she liked both the film and book for Charlotte's Web more than Stuart Little and I have to agree. Overall, it was an interesting story, but my least favorite by far of his three beloved classic tales.

interesting quotes:

"Sleep dwell upon thine eyes, peace in thy breast." (p. 54)

"As he peered ahead into the great land that stretched before him, the way seemed long. But the sky was bright, and he somehow felt he was headed in the right direction." (p. 131)
Profile Image for Lark Benobi.
Author 1 book1,864 followers
May 5, 2020
When Mrs. Frederick C. Little's second son arrived, everybody noticed that he was not much bigger than a mouse. The truth of the matter was, the baby looked very much like a mouse in every way.

The last time I read Stuart Little I was seven years old, and, my god, this book is just as horrific and grotesque as I remember. Imagine if you were expecting a baby and instead you gave birth to a tiny creature from the order rodentia. Complete with a hairless tail that is as long as its body. White spends absolutely no time in this wretched book exploring how Stuart's mother must have felt about her birth experience. I'm left to ponder her trauma, because at best it's only implied in the way she willfully neglects the mouse-spawn's well-being. Even though Stuart is a perfectly polite, perfectly groomed little mouse from the beginning (carrying a cane, even, and meticulously brushing his little teeth and smoothing his whiskers every morning) she sends him down a slimy pipe to rescue her wedding ring, and sends him into the piano while it's being played to unstick a hammer (causing temporary deafness), and loses him in a roll-up shade, and terrorizes him with the family cat, and locks him in the refrigerator, and loses him in a garbage truck, and neglects him when he's gravely ill, and finally loses him for good when he runs away on a quest to find a girl to marry, or if not a girl, then maybe a bird.

I'm interested in Mrs. Little. I want to know her make-up. I wonder whether she is aware of her trauma, or is acting out with unintended malice toward Stuart, while in a catatonic state of grief over the birth of this tiny monster. I was grossed out by this book as a child. I always thought my intense dislike for it was because my mother was pregnant when I read it, but actually, it's because it's a terrible book.
Profile Image for Calista.
3,885 reviews31.2k followers
July 23, 2017
This is nothing of what I expected. Knowing this is the same author of Charlotte's Web, I expected more. Stuart is born of human parents and for some reason he is a mouse. He lives in a lovely family in New York City with a cat. Then a bird named Margalo joins them. Stuart goes sailing. One day Margalo leaves the house toward the middle of the book and so Stuart runs away from home without saying goodbye to search for his bird friend. He heads north. The stories ends in the middle of the search. It's like E. B. didn't know how to end the story so he decided not to end the book. The ending really bothers me and Stuart's attitude to his family bothers me. The writing sparkles and is fantastic, yet I didn't really enjoy this story. I'm so surprised.
Profile Image for J. Aleksandr Wootton.
Author 8 books134 followers
December 1, 2020

Although it seems to be in the family tree of more focused stories and more definite characters (such as Ferris Bueller's Day Off and perhaps even Stewie from Family Guy), Stuart Little fails to come together as a story. More disjointed than episodic, lacking both the thematic coherence and the pathos of White's equally famous works Charlotte's Web and The Trumpet of the Swan, Stuart Little can't decide to be about anything, and so peters out rather than ends.

A cute idea, a few good lines, a couple of good scenes; but, needed to be taken back to the beginning and reworked right through.
Profile Image for Tatevik.
457 reviews90 followers
February 6, 2020
I remember I loved the movie when I was little and always wanted to have the book after I learned from the movie Mrs. Doubtfire that there was one.
But I got disappointed. The story was cute, but somehow I expected something like Charlotte's Web. It was a little boring (which is not definetly because I read this as an adult, children's is my second favourite genre). I felt like the storyline was interrupted in the middle. Maybe he intended to continue and have series about Stuart.
I like E.B. White as a writer but I've always been biased by "how the story ends", so this is not going into my favourites.
Profile Image for Ann☕.
292 reviews
July 10, 2022
My initial impression of E.B. White's first published adventure story: this is weird.

Stuart Little is a mouse born into a human family. (Okay, I tried to suspend my disbelief.) Then the story continues on to describe all the ways Stuart is helpful to his human family, such as climbing down a drain to retrieve a ring or pushing sticky keys inside a piano. (I thought that was a little mean-spirited of his family.) Stuart Little eventually becomes quite the adventurous type but amazingly none of the people he encounters thinks twice about a talking mouse, dressed in clothes. (Hmmm... okay.)

My favorite character was Snowbell. He wasn't a particularly pleasant cat but he added some excitement to the story. The illustrations by Garth Williams were cute, too.

Final rating: 2.5 stars rounded up to 3.
Original publication date: 1945
Profile Image for Donna Craig.
911 reviews41 followers
December 11, 2022
Stuart Little is a cute little middle-grades book, but it didn’t seem to have a point or an ending.
Profile Image for Shelby.
258 reviews
May 17, 2017
4 Stars
This book was good and kind of cute book to read. I have seen the movie and I thought it was a little bit better than the book surprisingly. I thought the writing was good and the story line though. Overall I thought it was a good book.
Profile Image for Heidi.
1,212 reviews133 followers
May 3, 2008
One of the first full-length books I remember reading as a kid (right after Charlotte's Web). So much cooler, sweeter, funnier and better than the movie versions... if you have a young child, introduce them to this book!
Profile Image for Amina.
1,256 reviews266 followers
April 19, 2017
I couldn't, I tried but couldn't add one more chapter after reading almost 50%.
The characters are so hard to connect with, I loved Charlotte's web so so much but this one is a complete disaster for me.
Profile Image for Sherril.
260 reviews56 followers
July 6, 2020
⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ rounded down to 2 ½ stars and here’s why.
I listened to the audiobook of Stuart Little by E. B. White, who also wrote one of my favorite children’s classics, Charlotte’s Web. Let’s start by saying, Stuart Little is no Charlotte’s Web. I will also admit that in this case, I do believe the actual book may have been better than the audiobook. I own the book and I’ve looked at it since finishing listening to the audiobook. I right away noticed instances of the use of lovely language, which passed me by in listening to it. The thing is, I’ve become accustomed to listening to certain types of short stories as a way to fall asleep. Occasionally I don’t fall asleep if I’m thinking hard on the story, but generally if it’s a narrator with a smooth, calming voice (British accents tend to fit this bill for me), I begin by listening carefully but by perhaps 20-30 minutes in, I become drowsy and fall into a satisfying sleep. When I return to the book, I find the place where my conscious left off.
The truth is that the reader of Stuart Little was a plus. Julie Harris, a Broadway actress added to the telling. But the book itself was somewhat more strange than appealing. Stuart Little was born to Mrs. Frederick C. Little. He was the second son and when he was born they noticed he was not much bigger than a mouse. In fact he looked very much like a mouse with mouse whiskers, a tail, a sharp mouse like nose and he was only about two inches high. For all intents and purposes he was a mouse, except that his arms and legs were more human like and it seemed from the beginning Stuart talked and even thought like, well a full grown man. Very strange and stranger still that the family accommodated to this and to Stewart, as if it was all quite reasonable. Stewart goes on to have adventures, all of which call for a suspension of disbelief, but then that is far more in a child’s realm (for which the book is intended) than that of an adult. The story goes on, sometimes interestingly and sometimes in directions that seem to be cut short and are unnecessary in the story. Such as the introduction of a tiny girl who Stuart tries to have a date with (obviously due to the similarity in their stature) but it goes nowhere and Stewart just moves on. The why, what and wherefore of it never explored. This happens more than once in the story. Perhaps the strangest thing of all was the ending.
Stuart was on a quest to find the lovely bird, Margalo, who had come to live in the Little’s house and she and Stewart had become fast friends. When Margalo flies off one day, Stewart sets off on a quest to find her. Along the way he met a repairman and struck up a conversation. Stewart came to ask him if he ever notices birds, which he does and they discuss the missing Margalo and this and that until Stewart says he had better get going. They say goodbye. Stewart sets off and sees that the way ahead of him seems long. “But the Sky was bright and he somehow felt he was headed in the right direction.” I was certain I missed something so I listened again to the chapter about the repairman and after the words “right direction” there was no more. That was it. Did Stewart find Margalo? I don’t know. Did Stewart reunite with his family? Damned if I know! Splat! It just ended. I read it in the hardcover edition and it was just the same. Did E. B. White forget to end it? Did he grow tired of it because it really wasn’t all that great of a book? Who knows? If interested, there’s always Google.
Profile Image for Olivia.
210 reviews19 followers
February 6, 2017
Wow how different this book reads in 2017 and as an adult.
It was surprising more than anything else. Stuart is a bit brazen! He shoots guns off in the air on sail boats, he asks for a "nip of brandy," he runs away from home un-remorsefully, he shoots an arrow into the cat's ear, he sulks when things don't go his way... overall I was not too impressed with Stuart Little the way I was as a kid.
Also his "adventures" seemed rather boring. Or maybe I am just too used to newer higher quality children's books like Harry Potter.

The writing was abrupt and crass. If my child was younger I would not choose this as his reading material. No offense, because it is a beloved classic. But it is not "timeless" the way some books are. I could understand why it was great when it was written back in the 1940s but nowadays there is much better reading material for children.
Profile Image for Polly Batchelor.
648 reviews69 followers
January 15, 2022
“Well,” said Stuart, “a misspelled word is an abomination in the sight of everyone.”
― E.B. White, Stuart Little
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