Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Wolf in the Snow

This nearly wordless picture book, set on the prairie, tells the story of a little girl who gets lost in a snowstorm on her way home from school and a wolf pup who becomes separated from his pack during the same snowstorm. Before the title page, there are vignettes of the child with her family and in her red parka setting off for school. The story opens with the little girl leaving school to walk home as the snow starts to fall. As the snow picks up, the wolf pup gets separated from his pack and the little girl gets lost. The two meet in what has now become a blizzard, and the child picks up the frightened wolf pup and trudges on. She hears the wolf pack howling in the distance and moves toward their howling, carrying the pup over hills, across a stream and through the woods, reuniting the pup with his pack. She tries to make it back home but falls, exhausted and unconscious in the snow. The wolves have followed her, and lick her face to wake her. When that doesn’t work, they start howling. Their howls alert her parents and guide them to her. The last scene shows the parents and child at home, cozy in front of the fire with hot cocoa.

The pen and ink drawings and watercolor illustrations in this book have just the right amount of detail and do a wonderful job depicting the emotions of the story. The desperation of being lost in a blizzard, the girl’s exhaustion, the wolves’ concern for the girl and the cozy safety of home at the journey’s end are all clearly conveyed without a word. Wolf in the Snow, by Matthew Cordell, is a heartwarming story of kindness and courage that is perfect for one-on-one sharing.

Guest post by Allison C. 

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