When Willow looks out her window, she sees a beautiful sight: a soft, blanket of snow. Willow likes things to be just as they are, and this smooth snow makes her happy. The friends next door throwing snowballs and making snow creatures? Not so much. They are having so much fun, they don't hear her telling them to stop. So she decides she needs to get closer - except how can she do that and still keep the snow perfect?
Even if your child doesn't see themselves in Willow, you will. This is a wonderful story that balances problem solving and being open to change. The obvious story of Willow's quest to keep a perfect blanket of snow, is complemented by her effort to solve problems. More specifically, how she worries about what could happen. Illustrating that concept for young readers is a way of helping them understand the idea of anticipating the result of a choice or action.
My one nit is that Willow looks more like a cat to me. She and her friends are arctic animals. That is truly a small nit. Highly recommended for preschool and elementary-aged children. It will go perfectly with a cup of cocoa.
None. Unless you're worried the kids will try to make a sled out of a fence board.
This is a picture book about friendship and being open to change.
There are several layers to the story that will grow with your child. Toddlers and preschoolers are likely to see the adventure and laugh at Willow's attempts to reach her friends. Kids in Kindergarten and first grade will go a level deeper and talk about Willow's various feelings (jealousy, anger, frustration) and the problem solving. For second and third graders, the "anticipatory" elements will make more sense [If I do x then Y could happen.]
9 and Up
4 to 9
Buy. Even though the setting is winter, the themes of problem solving, anticipating consequences, and being open to change are perfect all year 'round.