A little girl on the beach picks up an egg-shaped gray stone and imagines it will hatch into a bird.
Despite her mother’s insistence that the stone is too hard and heavy to be an egg, the dark-haired, pale-skinned girl, Eliza, sleeps with it under her pillow, treasuring its cool, smooth surface. One hot evening the stone feels very warm, so Eliza places it on her night table before falling asleep—waking to find the egg transformed into the shape of a bird. As the seasons change from summer to fall to winter, Eliza discovers a new gray pebble next to her stone bird and places them in a nest she fashions from a pair of socks. By springtime, two stone birds appear in her sock nest, a chick next to her mama bird. Warmer weather requires an open window, and one night Eliza dreams of beating wings and awakens to find her sock nest empty. Could the birds have come to life and flown away? Illustrations that look to be made from pen and ink with watercolors evoke summery seashore scenes and frosty winter evenings as the child’s playtime reveries become, for her, real. Sad at the loss of her stone birds, she finds that her birthday morning brings two doves near her bedroom window and the gift of a soft gray feather.
Never underestimate a preschooler’s resourceful thinking. (Picture book. 3-6)