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Rylant and Stringer (previously paired for Scarecrow) celebrate winter wonderlands in a cozy, lyrical tribute. Whether they encounter heavy snow that buries "cars up to their noses," or the best snow of all, the kind "that comes softly in the night, like a shy friend afraid to knock, so she thinks she'll just wait in the yard until you see her," kids embrace the precipitation. Author and illustrator largely look through a nostalgic lens. Rylant wistfully observes the snow's fleeting beauty and the passage of time; Stringer casts a granddaughter and grandmother duo in the lead roles. The result can feel more like a stroll down memory lane (or a preparation for one) than a childlike, in-the-moment romp. Stringer takes full advantage of the book's oversize dimensions and offers a range of perspectives. Her acrylic illustrations brim with blue-white crystal creations--flurries, drifts and snowflakes, no two alike. And when winter asserts itself at twilight, Stringer also shows grandmother and granddaughter staying warm inside, happy to be together: "It's the snow's turn now," Rylant says as Stringer offers an aerial view of the house, "We'll watch it fall." Like snow, the ending achieves a perfect silence. Ages 3-7. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
*Starred Review* Snow is not an uncommon subject in picture books, but few have both the grace and exuberance of this lovely collaboration featuring Rylant's evocative words and Stringer's entrancing paintings. This celebration looks at snow in all its permutations and considers the effects it has on those the flakes fall upon. Is the best snow the snow that comes softly in the night . . . the snow that brings you peace? Perhaps it's the heavy snow that sends you home from school, or the delicate fall that makes you notice the lace on trees. The artwork, whether oversize pictures of children at play, cozy household vignettes, or double-page spreads so packed with snow readers will want to reach in and make a snowball, is full of joy. Yet even in the midst of all this happiness, Rylant reminds readers that nothing lasts forever except memories. Fortunately, children will have this book in hand so they can experience the pleasure of a wintry day even after the snow is gone and the world has turned a soft green.--Cooper, Ilene Copyright 2008 Booklist
School Library Journal
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PreS-Gr 2-A single snowflake on a midnight-blue marbled background ushers readers into this quiet celebration of snow that "comes softly in the night like a quiet friend" or falls so "heavy [it buries] cars up to their noses." In brief, lyrical text, Rylant states that snow helps us notice "the delicate limbs of trees" and "the light falling from a lamppost." It brings the delight of making snow angels and sledding and returning home to enjoy a warm drink. She urges readers to savor the phenomenon, for it remains only briefly. Stringer's acrylic paintings make use of small boxed scenes, full and three-quarter spreads, or full-page pictures framed in white, to display a world of snow-filled wonders. Varying perspectives help readers come up close to a group of multiethnic children gazing longingly at the flakes falling outside their classroom window and then view them from above as, clad in their puffy winter gear, they are finally released to cavort in its depths. There are interior views of a grandparent and child enjoying cozy activities at home and exterior scenes of the two enjoying a walk as twilight bathes the snow in pink hues. This is a gentle gem while Uri Shulevitz's Snow (Farrar, 2004) is a livelier treatment of the topic.-Marianne Saccardi, formerly at Norwalk Community College, CT (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.