cover image Stina


Lani Yamamoto. Crymogea (Abrams, dist.), $14 (44p) ISBN 978-1-85177-858-4

Even in the summer, St%C3%ADna, a heroine of an ambiguous age who appears to live alone in a cabin, dresses in sweaters, hats, and scarves. In the winter, she doesn't leave home at all, spending her days knitting clothes, baking in her woodstove, and devising contraptions to help her stay warm, including using a fishing pole to retrieve food from the kitchen so she doesn't have to get out of bed. Her curiosity about children playing in the snow ("Wasn't the wind blowing right through their sweaters?") isn't enough to motivate her to go outside; each morning, "the duvet felt bigger and heavier, until one day she couldn't lift it at all." Splashed with subdued colors, Yamamoto's delicate pen-and-ink artwork makes St%C3%ADna's seclusion simultaneously cozy and lonesome. Despite hints at a deeper melancholy behind St%C3%ADna's sensitivity to the cold, her chunky knits would make a killing on Etsy. A visit from two children breathes fresh air into the story%E2%80%94and into St%C3%ADna herself, as she transforms her duvet into a down coat so she, too, can catch snowflakes on her tongue. Ages 4%E2%80%938. (Oct.)