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Children's Fiction Words


And How Punctuation Saved It

by (author) Caroline Adderson

illustrated by Roman Muradov

Initial publish date
Oct 2022
Words, General, Humorous Stories
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2022
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 7 to 18
  • Grade: 2 to 12


A village is torn apart by its residents' inability to communicate, until a little girl shares the gift of punctuation in this humorous illustrated parable.

Chaos reigns in the village of Babble! All day, the residents fight, yell and argue, and no one is heard or understood . . . until a mysterious little girl arrives and gives the locals something very strange: a period. But what is this thing that looks like a freckle or a spot? The villagers don't even know how to ask. However, as the girl begins to share more gifts — a question mark, quotation marks — the residents slowly learn how to communicate. But when more fights arise and disaster strikes, can punctuation truly save the day?

About the authors

Caroline Adderson is the author of Very Serious Children (Scholastic 2007), a novel for middle readers about two brothers, the sons of clowns, who run away from the circus. I, Bruno (Orca 2007) and Bruno for Real are collections of stories for emergent readers featuring seven year-old Bruno and his true life adventures.
Caroline Adderson also writes for adults and has won two Ethel Wilson Fiction Prizes, three CBC Literary Awards, as well as the 2006 Marion Engel Award given annually to an outstanding female writer in mid-career. Her numerous nominations include the Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist, the Governor General's Literary Award, the Rogers' Trust Fiction Prize and the Commonwealth Writers' Prize. Most recently, Caroline was the Vancouver Public Library's 2008 Writer-in-Residence.
Her eight year-old son Patrick and his many friends inspire her children's writing. Caroline and her family live in Vancouver, British Columbia.


Caroline Adderson's profile page

Roman Muradov's profile page


  • Short-listed, The Joan Betty Stuchner - Oy Vey! - Funniest Children's Book Award

Editorial Reviews

"[W]ill make children laugh and learn in equal measure." —School Library Journal
"[R]eaders . . . will come away with a new appreciation for the value of these inconspicuous dots and squiggles." —Booklist
"Babble! is Harold and the Purple Crayon for the grammarian . . . it's a collective effort to make sense of the way we all communicate with each other. This picture book . . . reminds us not to take these symbols for granted." —San Francisco Book Review
"Caroline Adderson gives children (and adults) an easy way to remember how and when to use punctuation marks. . . . Babble! will make a useful classroom tool and an enjoyable independent reading book for young learners. Highly recommended." —CM Reviews
"Inventive and engaging. . . . [A] finely crafted fable about the importance of communication, language, listening, understanding and cooperation. . . . Sure to become a classic favourite, Babble! And How Punctuation Saved It is an invaluable resource." —Canadian Children's Book News

"[A] charming little book. . . . Babble! is a delightful parable that will instruct and entertain both young and old alike." —The Dispatch
"One of the most inventive illustrated children’s books. . . . [R]eaders leave the book with a healthy respect for words and the tools they need to do their job. Babble!’s subtle mix of practical knowledge and poetic fancy will send readers back to the book many times." —Imaginary Elevators
"Adderson brings grammar to life. . . . This treatise on the power of punctuation concludes with an important (though not pedantic) message about listening to and really understanding one another." —Joplin Globe

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