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Peter Pauper Press

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Selected for the United States Board on Books for Young People (USBBY) 2015 OUTSTANDING INTERNATIONAL BOOKS list!

Celia is the town listener. She listens to people's little problems, big problems, and all the in-between problems. Once they have shared their troubles with her and let them go -- giving her their seeds of sorrow -- they feel lighter and happier. Celia has the wonderful ability to take these seeds and turn them into magical balloons, twinkling stars, and blooming flowers -- literally painting the world with color. When a young boy named Julian feels sad, he waits in line to see Celia. But before he gets to the front of the line, he realizes that he has lost his seed of sorrow and will be unable to give it to Celia. Oh no! Now how will he find a way to be happy again?

Celia is a quietly compelling tale about the value of kindness and friendship, and how sharing one's troubles lightens the heart -- like magic.

  • Hardcover with dust jacket.
  • 36 pages.
  • Ages 4 to 8.
  • Full color throughout.
  • 9-3/4 inches wide by 10 inches high.
Author Christelle Vallat has written many books while working in her dream job -- teaching! One of her biggest satisfactions comes from inspiring her young students. She loves spending hours in libraries and bookstores, knee-deep in books. She lives in Saint-Jean-en-Royans, France.

Illustrator Stephanie Augusseau's love for art history inspired her to study graphic design and visual communication at LISAA in Paris. She primarily works with traditional techniques, such as acrylic, gouache, watercolor, and ink. She lives with her family in Toulon, France.



“Deeply tender images.”


“This quiet story offers much food for thought.”

“Beautiful . . . this story offers the power of kindness, the magic of transformation, and the unique tale of how beauty can be found in happiness through the seed of sadness.”

Click here to download a free Common Core Aligned Teaching Guide for Celia.