An appealing contemporary fairy tale told with humor and warmth.

WHERE SNOW ANGELS GO

After encountering her snow angel, a little girl longs for his return.

Young Sylvie awakens one night to discover a large, shimmering creature with blue-white skin and enormous, snowy wings in her bedroom. When she speaks to the creature, he’s shocked she can see him. He tells Sylvie he’s the snow angel she created last winter and that he watches over her, returning only when she needs him. The angel discovers Sylvie has a fever, wakes her mother, and vanishes. Sylvie’s ill for many months but remembers everything about her snow angel. When she recovers, she thinks obsessively about him, futilely engaging in risky behavior, hoping to trigger his return. In those times she’s truly in danger, swimming and riding her bike, Sylvie’s convinced her angel saves her. As winter approaches, Sylvie decides everyone should have a snow angel and asks her angel for help. The text and illustrations portray Sylvie as an inquisitive, independent, somewhat lonely White girl fascinated by her majestic, magical, winged male protector who, while constrained by professional protocols and resplendent in sparkling robes, responds sympathetically to her attentions. Using line, color washes, and arresting perspectives, the illustrations in this lengthy picture book deftly convey the realism of Sylvie’s world, the wonder of her snow angel, and the sweetness of their bond in scenes of drama as well as stillness.

An appealing contemporary fairy tale told with humor and warmth. (author’s note) (Picture book. 7-10)

Pub Date: Oct. 5, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-5362-1937-1

Page Count: 72

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2021

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A fitting farewell, still funny, acute, and positive in its view of human nature even in its 37th episode.

HORRIBLE HARRY SAYS GOODBYE

From the Horrible Harry series , Vol. 37

A long-running series reaches its closing chapters.

Having, as Kline notes in her warm valedictory acknowledgements, taken 30 years to get through second and third grade, Harry Spooger is overdue to move on—but not just into fourth grade, it turns out, as his family is moving to another town as soon as the school year ends. The news leaves his best friend, narrator “Dougo,” devastated…particularly as Harry doesn’t seem all that fussed about it. With series fans in mind, the author takes Harry through a sort of last-day-of-school farewell tour. From his desk he pulls a burned hot dog and other items that featured in past episodes, says goodbye to Song Lee and other classmates, and even (for the first time ever) leads Doug and readers into his house and memento-strewn room for further reminiscing. Of course, Harry isn’t as blasé about the move as he pretends, and eyes aren’t exactly dry when he departs. But hardly is he out of sight before Doug is meeting Mohammad, a new neighbor from Syria who (along with further diversifying a cast that began as mostly white but has become increasingly multiethnic over the years) will also be starting fourth grade at summer’s end, and planning a written account of his “horrible” buddy’s exploits. Finished illustrations not seen.

A fitting farewell, still funny, acute, and positive in its view of human nature even in its 37th episode. (Fiction. 7-9)

Pub Date: Nov. 27, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-451-47963-1

Page Count: 80

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Sept. 17, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2018

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A plucky mouse finds her true home in this warm, winning tale.

A TRUE HOME

From the Heartwood Hotel series , Vol. 1

An orphan mouse unexpectedly arrives at Heartwood Hotel, which she hopes will become the home she’s seeking.

Mona’s never had a home for long. After a storm forces her to flee her latest forest shelter, she discovers an enormous tree with a heart carved into its trunk. When Mona presses the heart, a door opens, and she enters the lobby of Heartwood Hotel, where small forest critters hibernate, eat, and celebrate in safety. The kindhearted badger proprietor, Mr. Heartwood, takes pity on homeless Mona, allowing her to stay for the fall to assist the maid, Tilly, a red squirrel. Grateful to be at Heartwood, Mona strives to prove herself despite Tilly’s unfriendly attitude. Mona’s clever approaches with a wounded songbird, an anxious skunk, and a wayward bear win Mr. Heartwood’s approval. But when Mona accidentally breaks a rule, Tilly convinces her she will be fired. As Mona secretly leaves Heartwood, she discovers marauding wolves planning to crash Heartwood’s Snow Festival and devises a daring plan to save the place she regards as home. Charming anthropomorphic characters, humorous mishaps, and outside threats add to the drama. Delicate pencil illustrations reinforce Heartwood’s cozy home theme. A sequel, The Greatest Gift, publishes simultaneously.

A plucky mouse finds her true home in this warm, winning tale. (Animal fantasy. 7-10)

Pub Date: July 4, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-4847-3161-1

Page Count: 176

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Review Posted Online: April 17, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2017

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