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When Winter Comes
When Winter Comes
When Winter Comes
by Nancy Van Laan
Illustration by Susan Gaber

Rhyming text asks what happens to different animals and plants when winter comes and the cold wind blows.

Age: 2 Year-olds | Title: When Winter Comes  |  Author: Nancy Van Laan  |  Publisher: Atheneum Books

Rhyming text asks what happens to different animals and plants when winter comes and the cold wind blows.

A child's intense curiosity regarding the world around them should be celebrated, while a parent's patience in answering endless questions from little ones should be honored. When Winter Comes recognizes this age-old tradition and expresses it through a charming storybook that follows a young family on a walk through the snow. The child in the story inquires, "Where oh where do the (leaves, flowers, caterpillars, birds, mice, etc.) go, when the winter comes and the cold winds blow?" The parents answer in the same rhyming form, "Their [flowers] petals wilt, but their seeds burrow down to rest underneath the leaves' golden crown." The illustrations are beautifully painted, using many different brush stokes and techniques. The background is a bit muted in shades of blue, gray, green, and aqua, but the family feels like it's popping off the page with different pieces of red clothing.

The pictures will captivate even the youngest readers, encouraging interaction and curiosity. In each picture, the snow is painted to look like it's falling in the foreground, while the story's scene is going on in the background. Your little one will likely want to reach out and touch the page to see if they can feel the falling snow. Close-ups of the family's faces reveal extremely realistic eyes. Watch your child lock in on the gaze, determining if those pupils on the page are really staring at them. Because the book ends with the parents tucking the tired, rosy-cheeked cherub in, this becomes a great winter bedtime story. You can add your child's name to the final page and remind them how wonderful a warm cozy bed feels after a long cold day in the snow.

My two year-old friend Dano liked the picture of the fish swimming under a frozen pond. He reached out and stroked the page like he was trying to pet the fish. Perhaps they looked slimy to him? When I asked him if he liked the book, he responded, "It's pretty."
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