From School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2–On a snow-speckled day, a mother and daughter approach the greenmarket as the child announces, "Today is soup day." With economical text and vivid, multitextured collages whose upbeat charm belies their sophistication, the process of preparing the dish unfolds. In one spread, Iwai cleverly offers lessons about numbers, colors, sizes, textures, and what various vegetables look like. "This is what we put in our basket: One bunch of crispy green celery. Two shiny yellow onions….Six big white mushrooms. Ooops! We almost forgot the parsley." Back at home, mother and daughter cut up and cook the vegetables, and, while the soup simmers, read together, build a city out of blocks, hide from a monster, and have a tea party. Then they add seasoning and the girl's choice of pasta. While the alphabet noodles cook, it's cleanup time. Daddy's home, and the family eats soup together. The recipe is included. A perfect meal and a perfect book.Susan Weitz, formerly at Spencer-Van Etten School District, Spencer, NY
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One snowy soup day, a little girl helps her mother choose vegetables at the store, wash them, and even chop them (I get to cut the mushrooms and zucchini with a plastic knife because they are soft. Mommy helps my hand). Then, while the soup simmers on the stove, they play and read together. After Mommy adds spices, the girl chooses pasta to add to the pot. They put away the toys and books, Dad comes home, and they all eat soup together. The recipe for Snowy Day Vegetable Soup is appended. Pleasing in its simplicity of concept and expression, this picture book tells of everyday places and activities from the child’s point of view. The brightly colored illustrations—combining acrylics, fabric and paper collage, and digital elements—offer plenty of familiar concepts for young children to identify and new ones to explore, such as six kinds of pasta pictured on one page. Satisfying for reading aloud. Preschool-Grade 1. --Carolyn Phelan