A Thing Called Snow
Oxford University Press
This wonderful book has classic written all over it. It’s absolutely gorgeous from cover to cover; but one has come to expect nothing less from Yuval who puts his heart and soul as well as that of the natural world into every book he creates.
The story tells of arctic creatures Fox and Hare; springtime born, they grew up during the summer, and come autumn were best friends. Expert at sniffing distant things, Fox finds joy in leaping and bouncing while Hare – also a lover of leaping and bouncing has superb hearing ability.
One day Fox’s nose twitches and Hare’s ears prick: ‘Winter’s on its way,’ Tern tells them, pausing on its journey southwards, going on to talk of ‘this thing called snow!’ wherein the friends can jump, leap and bounce.
But what on earth is snow?
Off go Hare and Fox into the forest to try and find out. Bear’s answer to their question provides information as to it its colour, while Caribou adds that snow’s cold and Salmon tells them it’s fluffy like their tails. Having heard from Goose that it also sparkles, the friends still haven’t found the complete answer they seek, though they have had some misconceptions corrected. They’re also cold and tired, and as darkness starts to descend they stop beside a lake, too far from home to return.
Snuggled up together they fall fast asleep. Next day they awake to a ‘cold, fluffy, sparkly’ surprise; but that’s not the only surprise they get that joyful sparkling morning.
Despite the chilly season of this story’s setting, a feeling of warmth emanates from many of its pages on account of the kindness of the forest animal community.
With a pleasing circularity and true harmony between words and pictures, it’s a real treasure. Yuval breathes life into his characters with those trademark eyes, yet every one of the animals shows his love of and respect for, nature.
With its sparkling, tactile dust jacket, this book is a must have this season.