Author: Jeff M. Brown
Illustrator: Scott Nash
Series: Flat Stanley (Book #1)
Grade Level Equivalent:
Guided Reading Level:
Comedy and Humor, Series, Fantasy
Character and Values, Pride and Self-Esteem, Respect, Family Life
Young Stanley Lambchop is a perfectly nice, average boy who leads a perfectly nice, average life. But one morning something is different: Stanley's bulletin board has fallen on him during the night, and when his parents pull him out from under it, they find that he is suddenly only half-an-inch thick.
Being flat isn't as bad as you might think, however: the doctor says Stanley is fine, and in some ways he's better than ever. He can slide under closed doors, for instance, and he can be rolled up, mailed, and flown like a kite. Stanley rescues his mother's ring when she drops it through a narrow metal grating, and foils a gang of thieves who've been stealing paintings from the Famous Museum of Art. But when the thrill of flatness wears off and Stanley decides he really wants to go back to normal, his resourceful brother finds a way to help him.
Since it was first published in 1964, Flat Stanley has become a classroom classic: kids still can't seem to get enough of it. In form and timing, it is a comic masterpiece, told (and illustrated) in a delightfully dry, matter-of-fact tone that perfectly balances the fantastical situation. A delight for reading aloud and reading alone, it is also an ideal jumping-off point for imaginative writing exercises.