Into the Snow

Yuki Kaneko, illus. by Masamitsu Saito. Enchanted Lion (Consortium, dist.), $16.95 (32p) ISBN 978-1-59270-188-9
Pure joy: it’s what one apple-cheeked toddler experiences as he dives headlong into the snowy day outside, and it’s what readers will feel as they follow along. It’s easy to think of this book as a wintry companion to 2012’s Beach Feet, illustrated by Saito and translated from the Japanese by Kaneko. The minimal text conveys the boy’s reactions in extemporaneous bursts (“Flittering and fluttering... the snowflakes fall silently to the ground”), allowing Saito’s terrifically emotive paintings the spotlight. Thick, thumbprintlike daubs of paint suggest a real flurry in action, and the boy’s bright green coat, orange hat, rosy cheeks, and yellow sled pop from the white landscape. Those colors come together in a jumbled disarray as the boy flies downhill on his sled, his wild motion captured in dynamic angles and forceful strokes of paint; one can almost hear him catching his breath as he collapses in a happy heap in the snow. Hot chocolate, “melting and sweet,” with Mommy, a reminder of winter’s indoor pleasures, caps off a transfixing vision of a child’s investigation of, and delight in, his world. Ages 3–7. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 10/19/2015
Release date: 01/12/2016
Genre: Children's
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