Little Big Sister

Representation is important. Indeed, it would be imprudent to underestimate the value of seeing your own experience represented in the world around you. We all need to see characters that look like us, think like us, feel the things we do.

Eoin Colfer and Celia Ivey’s picture book is an important addition to a limited repertoire of children’s book that represents Little People or dwarfism. In this novel, Starr, Barbara’s big sister, reckons with her disability as her little sister grows taller than her. Will she ever reach her namesake, the stars if she does not grow big and tall?

The book’s illustrator, Ivey, herself was born with dwarfism which is important. Her artwork displays familiarity with the subject such as details that include Starr’s use of a stepladder and her adapted school chair.

Little Big Sister is an issue-driven book. In that, I mean, that the lead character’s dwarfism is central to the plot. This is the issue with which she must contend. This, of course, will lend itself to important conversations at home and in places of education. But I cannot think, how wonderful it would be to see a character whose dwarfism was incidental to the plot?

Nonetheless, Little Big Sister will be an important book in encouraging young people to empathize with experiences different to their own and for other young people, who live with dwarfism, it is vital it to have a book dedicated to them and their experience.

About the Author
Eoin Colfer Headshot
Eoin Colfer is the author of the New York Times best-selling Artemis Fowl series, which was adapted into a major motion picture from the Walt Disney Studios. He also wrote the critically acclaimed WARP trilogy, and many other novels, chapter books, and picturebooks for young readers. Eoin was the third Laureate na nÓg, Ireland’s laureate for children’s literature, from 2014 – 2016. He lives with
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Book Cover - Little Big Sister
Publication Date
June 2023