Cover image for Chicken soup for little souls. Della Splatnuk birthday girl
Chicken soup for little souls. Della Splatnuk birthday girl
McCourt, Lisa.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Deerfield Beach, Fla. : Health Communications, 1999.
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations; 31 cm
At first reluctant to attend Della's birthday party because all the kids think that she is weird, Carrie finds herself the only guest and decides to make it Della's best birthday ever.
General Note:
"Based on the ... best-selling series Chicken soup for the soul by Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen."
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PIC. BK. Juvenile Fiction Oversize

On Order



The last thing Carrie wants to do is go to Della Splatnuk's birthday party. Everyone knows Della is weird, and Carrie's best friends have vowed not to go. But once Carrie is there, she begins to wonder whether Della is really all that bad, and whether all the kids who did not show up have ever given Della a chance.

When Carrie looks within her own little soul to find an independence and conviction she didn't know she had, readers will learn that how people look doesn't always tell you what they are like inside. Just as Carrie learns amazing new things about herself, about Della and about friendship, children reading or listening to this story will learn to trust their own feelings when it comes to who is their friend, not the opinions of their peers.

Lisa McCourt and Pat Porter previously combined their talents on The Goodness Gorillas (more than 110,000 copies sold).

Author Notes

Lisa McCourt is a children's author. She discovered she loved to write as a child when she won a bumper sticker contest for a slogan to save the planet. She came up with "We're not the only ones who live here. Don't ruin their world." She drew a picture of a rabbbit, squirrel and a bird tomgo wiith the slogan.Her first job out of college was for a company called Troll Communications. It was a book publishing company with classroom book clubs that let you order books right from your teacher. She worked for children's book publishers for 10 years and then started her own book packaging company, Boingo Books. She enjoyed being s book publishe ras well as an author but being an author was her passion.

Lisa McCourt's books include Good Night, Princess Pruney Toes, and the Chicken Soup for Little Souls series. In 2014 her title, I Love You Stinky Face made the New York Times Best Seller List.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Ages 5^-8. Della Splatnuk is the weirdest girl in class, with her strange clothes and funny hair. She has invited her whole class to her birthday party. Carrie is definitely not going, since no one else is planning to, but Carrie's mother makes her go anyway. There's cake and fixings for 28 children, but Carrie, the first to arrive, waits with Della for other kids to show. No one does. Carrie sees how hurt Della is and talks to her, soon realizing she had been too quick to judge her. They end up having a ball--Della, Carrie, even their moms, dancing, making party hats, and playing games. Obviously, this story presents a finger-wagging lesson, but like other books in the series, it doesn't pretend to do otherwise. The cheery watercolor illustrations serve to carry the message, too, though Della, with her retro sixties look and her funky house, might seem to some children to be more typical then weird. But then again, that's the point. --Shelley Townsend-Hudson

School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 3 Della's classmates don't want to go to her birthday party because they think she's weird "She has funny hair and she hardly ever talks." Carrie's mother insists that she attend, wearing her newest outfit and taking a carefully selected gift. The first to arrive, Carrie eyes her classmate warily while she waits for the other guests to appear. When it becomes obvious that no one else is coming and that Della is on the verge of tears, Carrie begins to feel angry that her friends have behaved so badly and decides to get better acquainted with the birthday girl. At the end of the afternoon, Carrie hands Della her present, says "Happy Birthday to my new true friend," and finds that she really means it. The large, bright watercolor illustrations, mostly two-page spreads, do a fine job of capturing the different homes of the two main characters. They show the conventional middle-class household of conservatively dressed African-American Carrie and her mother and the more Bohemian lifestyle hinted at by the trendier clothing of Della and her fashion-designer mother. A gentle presentation of a serious message about friendship. Ginny Gustin, Santa Monica Public Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



'What makes her weird?' Mom asked.'Everyone just knows she is,' I explained. 'She has funny hair and she hardly ever talks. Her mother is a fashion designer and she tries out her new styles on Della. Really weird styles. She's just not like the rest of us.'Mom looked sad. Then she said it. 'I don't know about anyone else, Carrie, but you're going. I'll pick up a present tomorrow.' She gave me a quick hug and went back to her laundry.I couldn't believe it! She didn't make me go to my cousin's party when I was afraid I wouldn't know anyone and all the kids would be older than me. It wasn't fair.Saturday afternoon Mom made me wrap the gift she'd bought for me to give Della an origami kit with special shiny papers. I had gotten the same kit at my birthday party. It was my favorite present. Then Mom made me put on my newest outfit and she drove me across town to Della's.Mom wanted to meet Della's family, so she and I went to the door together. The woman who opened it was no ordinary mother. 'Oh, you're the first of Della's friends to arrive!' she said. 'Della will be so happy you're here.' As we walked in, I looked at Mom as if to say, 'I told you so,' but Mom was acting like nothing unusual was happening. The house was even stranger than Della's mother. At least the table showed signs of a normal birthday party. In the center was a huge cake with eight purple candles and some lumpy rosebuds. 'Happy Birthday, Della' was written in crooked letters across the top. Twenty-eight little paper cups filled with candy were spaced evenly around the cake. Each one had a name written on it. This won't be too bad, I thought, once everyone gets here.Our two mothers disappeared into the kitchen and I was left face-to-face with Della Splatnuk, the weirdest girl in my school. 'So, who else is coming?' I asked. 'I don't know,' was all Della said. I sat down near the door so I could blend in with the kids in our class as soon as they started showing up. We heard our mothers laughing in the kitchen. We heard the clock on the wall tick, tick, ticking. We looked at everything in the room except each other. After sitting like that for almost five minutes, the terrible thought hit me: No one else was coming. I just knew it. How could Mom have made me do this? I was the only one in our whole class who came! I was feeling sorry for myself when I heard a sniffle. I looked across the room to see Della trying hard not to cry, but crying just the same. Did she really think everyone would come? Didn't she know what the kids said about her? Maybe she didn't know. Maybe she hoped her birthday party would be just like anyone else's. Maybe, just maybe . . . it should have been.The more I thought about the way my class treated Della, the more I wondered why it had to be that way. Sure, she was quiet and she dressed funny, but what was she really like? Did anyone in my class know? Maybe I could find out. 'Um . . . Della,' I asked, 'what's your favorite color?' Excerpted from Della Splatnuk, Birthday Girl by Lisa McCourt, Pat Grant-Porter, Pat Grant Porter All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.