Noisy Nora is a 1973 children's picture book by Rosemary Wells about a mouse called Nora who likes to make lots of noise.

Noisy Nora
AuthorRosemary Wells
IllustratorRosemary Wells
Cover artistRosemary Wells
GenreChildren's story, Picture book
PublisherDial Press
Publication date
Media typePrint (hardback and paperback)
Pages37 (unpaginated)


One evening, an attention-starved middle mouse named Nora wanted attention for her parents. But her parents are doing stuff with her older sister Kate and her baby brother Jack. After so much waiting, Nora decides to make noise: She banged the window, slammed the door, and dropped Kate's marbles on the kitchen floor. But, unfortunately, all it did was make her parents yell at her to be quiet and Kate embarrassedly says to Nora: "Nora, why are you so dumb?"

Nora tried to get attention again but her parents are still doing things with Jack & Kate. Again, she tried to make noise to get attention: She knocked the lamp, felled some chairs, and flew a kite down the stairs and crashed it at the bottom of the stairs. But, again, her parents yell at her to be quiet and Kate embarrassedly says to Nora again: "Nora, why are you so dumb?"

Out of options to get attention again, Nora shouted to her whole family after she couldn't get attention from them: "I'm leaving and I'm never coming back!" After a moment of silence without Nora, The family realizes that Nora is gone because they neglected her and they decided to form a search party to find Nora. But Nora was not in the mailbox or in the cellar or hiding in the shrub or in the tub.

Nora's mother was very upset that Nora is gone forever even when they were searching through the trash. But, all of the sudden, Nora popped out of the broom closet saying "But I'm back again" and everything in the closet came down with a monumental crash. The whole family was glad that she was back and they managed to accept her by giving her attention again.

Development and inspirationEdit

Wells has said that she was an only child, as opposed to Nora who was the middle child of a big family.[1] Wells has called her books ""non-fiction"",[2] so that "Nora was my grade school best friend, Virginia O’Malley, who was a middle child".[2]

Publication historyEdit


A review in Kirkus Reviews of Noisy Nora wrote "Any child who has felt left out of the family schedule and affections can identify with Nora, ..".[3]

Noisy Nora has also been reviewed by School Library Journal,[4] Booklist,[5] and Horn Book Guides[6]

It is a School Library Journal Best of the Best book,[7] an American Library Association Notable Children's Book,[7] and a Choosing Books for Kids book.[7] A recording of the book is an ALA Notable Recording.[8]


In 1994 Weston Woods developed an animated story based on the book's illustrations, which was narrated by Mary Beth Hert.

In 2000, Nora was featured as one of the characters in the Timothy Goes to School animated TV series.

In 2010 it was produced by Newvideo and Scholastic and bundled with 4 other animated stories on a "Scholastic Storybook Treasures" DVD.[9]


  1. ^ Jessica Leigh Lebos (November 12, 2014). "Savannah Children's Book Festival: Rosemary Wells". Connect Savannah. Retrieved March 24, 2021.
  2. ^ a b Jenny Mcdonald. "Interview with Rosemary Wells". Collaborative Classroom. Retrieved 14 March 2021.
  3. ^ "Noisy Nora". Kirkus Reviews. Kirkus Media LLC. April 1, 1973. Retrieved March 24, 2020.
  4. ^ Susand Garland. "Noisy Nora". School Library Journal. Media Source Inc. Retrieved March 24, 2021. Vibrant colors and a larger format make the characters seem to jump out at readers. .. This is a Nora for the `90s!
  5. ^ Stephanie Zvirin. "Noisy Nora". Booklist. American Library Association. Retrieved March 24, 2021. A wonderful story, no matter which version you have on your shelves.
  6. ^ "Noisy Nora". Horn Book Guides. Media Source Inc. Retrieved March 24, 2021. While the art lacks the playful subtlety of the original's pen lines, it better reflects the text, with more action and figures that fill the pages.
  7. ^ a b c Diane D. Canavan. "Must-Read" Books for Elementary Students (PDF). Oklahoma State Department of Education. Retrieved March 24, 2021.
  8. ^ Awards list Retrieved on March 29, 2018.
  9. ^ Scholastic Inc. (2002). "Scholastic Storybook Treasures Noisy Nora...and More Stories by Rosermary Wells DVD". Retrieved April 26, 2014.

External linksEdit