Patricia MacLachlan, Author
Steven Kellogg, Illustrator
Random House Children’s Books, Fiction, 2013
Suitable for Ages: 3-7
Themes: Snowflakes, Grief, Renewal, Memory
Opening: “After the flowers are gone/ Snowflakes fall./ Flake/After flake/After flake/Each one a pattern/ All its own–/No two the same–/All beautiful.”
Book Jacket Synopsis: In Snowflakes Fall, Newbery Medalist Patricia MacLachlan and award-winning artist Steven Kellogg, portray life’s natural cycle: its beauty, its joy, and its sorrow. Her simple but powerful words gently convey the impact of loss and the healing power of memory. This book is a tribute to the qualities that make each individual unique.
Why I like this book: Patricia MacLachlan and Steven Kellogg collaborate to create this beautiful, lyrical and inspirational book to honor and remember the community of Sandy Hook and Newtown, CT, who lost family members during the school shooting in Dec. 14, 2012. In opening remarks, Kellogg, a former resident of the community, says he hopes “to celebrate the laughter, the playful high spirits, and the uniqueness of the children of Sandy Hook and children everywhere.” There is no mention in the story about the Sandy Hook incident. Instead, the book celebrates the individuality of children and compares them to snowflakes, with no two being alike. It offers hope that when the world is dark, in the morning the “world shines” and the children will romp in the snow, build forts, go sledding, leave their footprints and make snow angels. Kellogg’s illustrations are colorful, magical and uplifting. Make sure you check out both the front and end pages because they add to the story. Random House has made a donation to the Sandy Hook School Support Fund and donated 25,000 new books to the national literacy organization First Book in the community’s honor and in support of children everywhere.
Resources: Parents and teachers can use this book as a quiet book about the natural life cycles of birth and renewal. It is an excellent book to help children work through grief and healing. With winter quickly approaching, it is a perfect time to encourage children to play in the snow, catch snow flakes on their tongues, follow animal tracks and make snow angels. Visit Random House for a special list of activities, coloring pages and a teacher’s guide for Snowflakes Fall.
Every Friday, authors and KidLit bloggers post a favorite picture book. To see a complete listing of all the Perfect Picture Books with resources, please visit author Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Books.