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Perfect Snow
     

Perfect Snow

by Barbara Reid
 

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It came in the night. "Perfect!" said Scott. "Snow!" said Jim. At recess the schoolyard is full of happy kids. Scott is making snowmen, Jim is working on the world's greatest snow fort. At lunchtime they join forces to create a perfect snow surprise! Barbara Reid combines her trademark plasticine artwork with ink and watercolour panels to bring a timeless tale of

Overview


It came in the night. "Perfect!" said Scott. "Snow!" said Jim. At recess the schoolyard is full of happy kids. Scott is making snowmen, Jim is working on the world's greatest snow fort. At lunchtime they join forces to create a perfect snow surprise! Barbara Reid combines her trademark plasticine artwork with ink and watercolour panels to bring a timeless tale of winter fun to life.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Reid's (Fox Walks Alone) trademark textured Plasticine art is a natural for this brisk wintertime tale, allowing her to create persuasive footprints and trails where children have tromped through the snow. But with more than a dozen books to her credit in this media, who can blame her for branching out? Reid's lively scenarios are complemented and nicely balanced by comparatively quiet, sepia-toned ink-and-watercolor panels that flesh out the story line and provide humorous diversions. After an overnight snowfall, two friends can't wait until recess. Neither can their classmates—Reid makes it clear that no one's mind is on schoolwork, and when the students head outside, it's a snow-fueled bacchanal, complete with a fantastical "crazy twister of kids, whirling through the schoolyard" and "The World's Greatest Totally Massive Snow-man Fort." The text largely comprises realistic, punchy dialogue, yet it's the two-tiered artwork that drives the story. Reid proves such a natural at sequential art and storytelling, it wouldn't come as a surprise (or be a bad thing) if she had a graphic novel up her sleeve. Ages 6–9. (Sept.)
From the Publisher

*Starred Review* "The winner of Canada's prestigious Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator's Award in 2010, this distinctive picture book will find an appreciative audience in the Snow Belt, while inspiring snow envy in warmer climates." Booklist

*Starred Review* "Two boys, next-door neighbors, awaken to find that snow has fallen overnight. At school, Scott works quietly while Jim watches the clock until...RECESS! Jim joins a 'crazy twister of kids' creating chaos on the playground, while at the edge of the schoolyard, while Scott attempts to improve his snowman-building technique and create 'the world's greatest team of snowmen.' By the end of lunchtime, all the children are working together, transforming Scott's solo project into 'The World's Greatest Totally Massive Snowman Fort!' From Scott's initial, quiet joy on discovering the snowfall to Jim's fist-pumping exuberance, the boys' personality differences are marked throughout the book, but their rock-solid friendship is at the heart of the understated, but satisfying story. Reid's artwork takes two forms; large, colorful plasticine illsutrations, and small ink drawings with sepia-toned, watercolor washes. In either medium, the figures of children are expressive and pleasing. The creatively detailed and remarkably well crafted plasticine illustrations include an engaging aerial view of kids playing in the snow at recess. The winner of Canada's prestigious Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator's Award in 2010, this distinctive picture book will find an appreciative audience in the Snow Belt, while inspiring snow envy in warmer climates." Booklist

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Brothers Scott and Jim are delighted to wake up and see snow. School is open, but they look forward to recess, finding the snow "perfect." Jim cannot wait to get out and build his Snow Fortress of Doom. Scott begins a team of snowmen. Other kids raid Jim's fort in a swirl of snow, then head for Scott's snowmen. Jim stops them just as the bell rings. At lunch, the brothers and the other children work together to make "The World's Greatest Totally Massive Snowman Fort." When they leave school, they agree that both the snow and the fort are "perfect." Unfortunately it rains that night. But the optimistic boys find the resulting slush "excellent" as well. Reid uses colored Plasticine effectively and naturalistically for the main illustrations of the children and their outfits in the snow. The visual tale is enhanced with added ink and watercolor pictures on the sides, tops, or bottoms of some pages, like storyboards of other actions. The combination convincingly depicts the school day winter activities in a light-hearted fashion. Check the added visual note in the end pages. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3—Scott is trying to build the world's greatest team of snowmen at recess, but the bell rings before he can finish. Jim would like to build his Snow Fortress of Doom before recess is over, but before he can complete it, his fort is raided. The boys don't give up, though. They try again at lunch, but this time they are successful because they decide to work together to build something that everyone will want to contribute to and no one will want to destroy. Reid's colorful Plasticine illustrations are almost photographic in detail. The walls of the school are covered with sprinkles of tiny snowflakes, and many of the children who appear outside have a flush of pink on their cheeks. The panels of black-and-white drawings that appear alongside the colored illustrations allow readers to see sequences of action and the passage of time. By the end of this book, the perfect snow is washed away by the rain, but these two boys don't mind. They retain their playful outlook on life and think of ways to have fun in the slush.—Tanya Boudreau, Cold Lake Public Library, AB, Canada
Kirkus Reviews
Most snow-themed books celebrate a day off from school, but Reid's latest just may have kids hoping for their own snow-filled recess. Scott and Jim wake up to snow. The fact that school is not called off does not blunt their enthusiasm one bit. Once at school, both occupy their desks, but their thoughts are already outside. And when the recess bell finally rings, Scott works on creating the "World's Greatest Snowman," while Jim constructs an "indestructible Snow Fortress of Doom." Trouble is, neither is very successful--Scott's one snowman turns into a team, each better than the previous one, while meanwhile the rest of the schoolyard becomes a snow-grabbing melee as all the children run out of snow at the same time. Jim narrowly manages to save Scott's snowmen from the fracas. At lunchtime, the two hatch a plan to combine their ideas and their snow. Their solution is so cool that the whole schoolyard pitches in to help create "The World's Greatest Totally Massive Snowman Fort." Reid's trademark Plasticine artwork gives wonderful depth and texture to the pages, while the details she includes are impressive, a chain-link fence and superhero pajamas among them. Black-and-white ink-and-watercolor panels keep the focus on the main illustrations while also rounding out the story. Cooperation, teamwork and creative problem solving taken to new levels make this a great choice, no matter what the season. (Picture book. 5-9)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780807564929
Publisher:
Whitman, Albert & Company
Publication date:
09/01/2011
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
10.20(w) x 10.20(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
AD360L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author


Barbara Reid's distinctive style using Plasticine, a form of modeling clay, is known around the world. The illustrator of more than twenty books, she has won numerous awards including the UNICEF Ezra Jack Keats Award, The Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Award, the Mr. Christie's Book award, and the Elizabeth Cleaver Award. She lives in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, with her children and her husband, phtographer Ian Crysler.

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