To sign up for Meridian’s Free Newsletter, please CLICK HERE.
During the coldest and darkest months of the year books about snow and winter can be a delight to read. The following books are all picture books except for the last two and are good for ages four through eight. The final two books are good for ages nine through adult.
Snowy Bear, by Tony Mitton, and gorgeously painted by Allson Brown with sweeps of acrylic completely covering each open page scene, is a simple, sweet story. Little Bear is cold and lonely. He seeks warmth and comfort from fox, but fox has no room for this little bear as he has his family already in the dark den. When Little Bear sees the lights of a house, he trudges through the drifts toward it. A small girl is inside all alone and looking out the window. When she turns and sees him, she is lonely no more.
Bear & Hare Snow!, by Emily Gravett, showcases two friends enjoying the snow and being outside. Hare loves all aspects of snow but has difficulty getting his friend, Bear, to enjoy it as well. When Hare finally comes upon a fun activity that needs snow, Bear expresses a huge smile of delight. The text is simple making this perfect for toddlers and preschoolers. The illustrations were made with pencil, watercolor and wax crayons.
Snow, by Sam Usher, begins with a young boy waking up to new fallen snow. He is overly anxious to get outside and go to the park before anyone else steps first onto this blanket of white. But he has to wait for his Grandad to shower and get dressed. Meanwhile, neighborhood children are beginning to stream past his snowy yard on their way to the park. Finally Grandad is ready and out they go to the park where a pleasant surprise is waiting. This is a great story for youngsters who must wait for adult supervision before going outside. The illustrations were completed in watercolor and ink.
Shh! Bears Sleeping, by David Martin, and oil paintings which are breathtaking by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher, is filled with nuances in a simple rhyming text. But what captivates the listening audience are the beautiful pictures that fill the open-pages. You can almost hear the splashes of water as the drips coming from the bear looking for fish seem to splatter from the page. You’ll find detailed information about bears in the back of the book.
Up & Down (A Lift-the-Flap Book), by Britta Teckentrup, is a concept book about direction. It begins with Little Penguin who lives on an iceberg and misses his friend. As he travels to see his friend, he goes under and through and over objects in order to see his friend. Each of these objects become a lift-the-flap page so youngsters can guess the direction he will travel. And who is his friend? You’ll have to travel alongside Little Penguin to find out.
The Little Snowplow, by Utahan Lora Koehler, and the colorful illustrations that were completed digitally by another Utahan Jake Parker, is a story that reflects “The Little Engine That Could”. The little snowplow has just joined the crew of other much larger trucks. They make fun of his size and inability to snowplow much of anything. But the little snowplow trains and trains to have the strength to lift and push heavy loads. It pays off when a giant snowstorm comes their way and the little snowplow can prove his worth. The trucks are anamorphically enhanced with headlights as eyes and are full of expression.
Snowy Sunday, by Phyllis Root, and delightfully painted with watercolor by Helen Craig, represents the perfect wintery worship day of service. Bonnie is concerned about her farm animals in the freezing cold weather. So she decides to knit each of them warm hats and blankets and even beak and tail warmers. The surprise waiting at the end of whom she ends up knitting for will surly warm your heart and bring smiles all around.
How the Sun Got to Coco’s House, by Bob Graham, is the story of the progression of the sun as it began to light the world in the northern most regions of the world. As it travels from the ice caps in the Arctic, it is reflected through the water where whales dive deep. It eventually comes through Coco’s bedroom window as she wakes up. It follows her out the door to her backyard where it glows as she builds a snowman. This book is a delight!
Jack Frost, by William Joyce, is filled with illuminating pictures that will surely put you right into this adventure of who Jack Frost really is and how he came to be. But it’s more about hope and courage and how he strives to protect children. You will likely find yourself pouring over these pictures as they take in the amazing world of Jack Frost.
Winter’s Child, by Angela McAllister, and magnificently illustrated digitally by Grahame Baker-Smith, is a magnificent fairytale about friendship and being careful of what you wish for. Tom has a best friend whom he doesn’t know is Winter’s son. They have great fun outside in the cold of winter, so much so that they don’t want it to end. This becomes very problematic for Tom and those around him as he must allow the growing season to return. Some good discussions will arise from reading this beautifully illustrated book.
White Fang, (A Scribner Illustrated Classic), by Jack London, is a beautifully bound book for keepsake. There are amazing colored illustrations sprinkled throughout by Ed Young. This is one book your family should have and if you haven’t read it yet, what are you waiting for? White Fang is part dog and part wolf who is struggling to survive throughout this book set in the northern wilderness. Adventures abound throughout this book!
The Tale of Rescue, by Michael J. Rosen, and illustrated with colorful watercolor pictures sprinkled throughout by Stan Fellow, is a story of heroism, but not by man. This tale is about the heroic feats made by a cattle dog as he rescues a family who is stranded by a sudden blizzard. The story is gripping, succinct and short, making it a perfect book to be read out loud over a few days’ time. But you will have a difficult time attempting to stop until you’re finished!