The Little General and the Giant Snowflake

Overview


The Little General and the Giant Snowflake is a beautifully illustrated allegory by a leading poet, perfect for children and adults alike. The little general heads an army called the Realists, and every day he and his troops practice battle formations on a field, while the Dreamers use it to play strange, peaceful games. His soldiers include Sergeant Samantha, wishes the general would pay attention to her, and Lieutenant Lyle, who always seems to get into trouble. One day the little general sees a giant ...
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The Little General and the Giant Snowflake

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Overview


The Little General and the Giant Snowflake is a beautifully illustrated allegory by a leading poet, perfect for children and adults alike. The little general heads an army called the Realists, and every day he and his troops practice battle formations on a field, while the Dreamers use it to play strange, peaceful games. His soldiers include Sergeant Samantha, wishes the general would pay attention to her, and Lieutenant Lyle, who always seems to get into trouble. One day the little general sees a giant snowflake hovering in his garden. Ashamed, he pretends not to see it, but eventually he discovers that everyone in his army has a similar problem. What magical message is the snowflake trying to bring to the general, and to the world?
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Both Zechel's whimsical grayscale drawings and Harvey's lovely, straightforward prose are characterized by an understated sense of humor that should give the book crossover potential."
Publishers Weekly

"This charming little book is totally unexpected and charming. Its beautiful drawings are a perfect pairing for this unique find." —Salt Lake City's Deseret News

"The Little General and the Giant Snowflake is a fun read that teaches about imagination and how having an overactive on isn't a bad thing."—The Midwest Book Review

"Utterly charming—I love this little general and the strange and wondrous and precise world he lives in: the Thursday Jacket, the Alphabetize the Attic! (laughed out loud there), the disease books, the very touching moment with the snowflake being revealed as proportional to denial. I'm so glad you did it. And the drawings are just perfect—love the bookshelves, the dancing Lyle, the expressions. I can't wait to have my own copy all bound and beautiful."—Aimee Bender, author of Willful Creatures

"Luckily for readers, poet Matthea Harvey has a delightful denouement that is sure to satisfy everyone—no matter which side of the realism/dreamer spectrum they happen to fall . . . the hushed black and white drawings by Elizabeth Zechel render this a cozy short read suitable for early-to-dark evenings by the fire." —The Minneapolis Star Tribune

“This story is full of imagination and takes you whole-heartily into the world of dreams where anything is possible.”—Portland Book Review

"For families looking for a charming bedtime story or a new tradition, The Little General and the Giant Snowflake fills the need admirably."—Blogcritics

Publishers Weekly
This tidy allegory about the importance of imagination pits a group of Realists, led by a diminutive and orderly general (who has a meticulously tended flowerbed and an appreciation for the blind devotion of lemmings) against an army of Dreamers. Not that there's ever any actual fighting (“The Dreamers were always too busy playing games. But the little general thought it best to be prepared”). However, the general's discovery of a giant snowflake one morning becomes the first crack in his steely facade; soon he's having surreal dreams and losing his grip on his loyal army. With the help of two soldiers—Sergeant Samantha (who has braided pigtails, rectangular glasses, and a clandestine crush on the general) and the bumbling, free-spirited Lieutenant Lyle—and the Dreamers themselves, the general learns that a little imagination can go a long way. Both Zechel's (Is There a Mouse in the Baby's Room?) whimsical grayscale drawings and Harvey's lovely, straightforward prose are characterized by an understated sense of humor that should give the book crossover potential. Ages 8–up. (Nov.)
Children's Literature - Denise Daley
The little general was perfectly content with his orderly life. He so enjoyed the sameness of his daily routine that you can imagine his shock when he discovered a gigantic snowflake hanging from a tree outside his house. The little general attempted to go about his usual business of directing his army of Realists. The Realists practiced their formation while across the field, the Dreamers giggled and played. The snowflake continues to follow the little general, however, and he slowly comes to realize that he is not alone. It seems that his entire army of Realist soldiers has also been seeing snowflakes. There is a lot of symbolism in this story and it may not be understood by younger readers. Still, the lesson is an important one; imagination is a powerful tool and life is more joyous and exciting when we use our imaginations. The black and white illustrations add a dreamlike feel to this unusual but meaningful book. Reviewer: Denise Daley
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780982053911
  • Publisher: Tin House Books
  • Publication date: 11/1/2009
  • Pages: 64
  • Sales rank: 1,146,863
  • Age range: 8 - 11 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 6.90 (h) x 0.40 (d)

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