cover image Emily's Snowball: The World's Biggest

Emily's Snowball: The World's Biggest

Elizabeth Keown. Atheneum Books, $13.95 (1pp) ISBN 978-0-689-31518-3

This slight picture book gives new meaning to the term ``snowball effect.'' What starts out as Emily's smallish snowball gradually turns into an icy mass ``as big as a mountain'' and, with the help of friends and neighbors, the humongous mound finally comes to rest at the town park. Gawkers arrive from far and near, followed by souvenir stands and TV and newspaper accounts--and the inevitable arrival of warm, snow-melting temperatures. Keown's text, though light on plot, uses a practiced storyteller's tone to build dramatic mountains out of molehills--or in this case, snowflakes. The easy- going characters seem unaffected by their few weeks of fame, and don't mind seeing the eponymous behemoth dwindle to a springtime puddle. Trivas's rather muddy watercolors prove lusterless, particularly in contrast to her snowy white backgrounds. In any case, this title should inspire snowball rollers everywhere. Ages 5-8. (Sept.)