Start reading The Snow Child: A Novel (Pulitzer Prize in Letters on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Enter a promotion code
or gift card
 
 
 

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Color:
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player

 

The Snow Child: A Novel (Pulitzer Prize in Letters: Fiction Finalists) [Kindle Edition]

Eowyn Ivey
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,534 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $14.99
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $5.00 (33%)
Sold by: Hachette Book Group

Whispersync for Voice

Now you can switch back and forth between reading the Kindle book and listening to the Audible audiobook. Learn more or scan your Kindle library to find matching professional narration for the Kindle books you already own.

Add the professional narration of The Snow Child: A Novel (Pulitzer Prize in Letters: Fiction Finalists) for a reduced price of $3.99 after you buy this Kindle book.

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $9.99  
Library Binding $21.56  
Paperback, Large Print $13.05  
Audio, Cassette, Audiobook, Unabridged --  
Audible Audio Edition, Unabridged $23.95 or Free with Audible 30-day free trial
Highly Rated Kindle Books
Discover your next great read with these literature & fiction picks and more. Learn more

Book Description

Alaska, 1920: a brutal place to homestead, and especially tough for recent arrivals Jack and Mabel. Childless, they are drifting apart--he breaking under the weight of the work of the farm; she crumbling from loneliness and despair. In a moment of levity during the season's first snowfall, they build a child out of snow. The next morning the snow child is gone--but they glimpse a young, blonde-haired girl running through the trees.

This little girl, who calls herself Faina, seems to be a child of the woods. She hunts with a red fox at her side, skims lightly across the snow, and somehow survives alone in the Alaskan wilderness. As Jack and Mabel struggle to understand this child who could have stepped from the pages of a fairy tale, they come to love her as their own daughter. But in this beautiful, violent place things are rarely as they appear, and what they eventually learn about Faina will transform all of them.


Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Amazon Best Books of the Month, February 2012: In her haunting, evocative debut, Eowyn Ivey stakes her claim to a Russian fairy tale, daring the reader--and the characters--to be lulled into thinking they know the ending. But, as with the Alaskan wilderness, there's far more here than meets the eye. On the surface it's the story of a childless pioneer couple running from their East Coast lives and struggling to survive in the harshest of climates while also attempting to reconnect with each other; but it's also the story of the spring of hope that bubbles out of new friendships, of the slow realization of love for a surrogate child, of the ties between man and nature. Ivey spares no words in describing the beauty and the danger of her native Alaska, bringing the sheer magnitude of the wilderness alive on every page. With the transparent prose of a fairy tale and descriptions to put most nature writing to shame, The Snow Child immerses readers in a 1920s Alaska that will draw them back again and again. -- Malissa Kent

Review

"If Willa Cather and Gabriel Garcia Marquez had collaborated on a book, THE SNOW CHILD would be it. It is a remarkable accomplishment -- a combination of the most delicate, ethereal, fairytale magic and the harsh realities of homesteading in the Alaskan wilderness in 1918. Stunningly conceived, beautifully told, this story has the intricate fragility of a snowflake and the natural honesty of the dirt beneath your feet, the unnerving reality of a dream in the night. It fascinates, it touches the heart. It gallops along even as it takes time to pause at the wonder of life and the world in which we live. And it will stir you up and stay with you for a long, long time." (Robert Goolrick, New York Times bestselling author of A Reliable Wife )

"THE SNOW CHILD is enchanting from beginning to end. Ivey breathes life into an old tale and makes it as fresh as the season' s first snow. Simply lovely." (Keith Donohue, New York Times bestselling author of The Stolen Child )

"A transporting tale . . . an amazing achievement." (Sena Jeter Naslund, New York Times bestselling author of Ahab's Wife )

"THE SNOW CHILD is a vivid story of isolation and hope on the Alaska frontier, a narrative of struggle with the elements and the elemental conflict between one's inner demons and dreams, and the miracle of human connection and community in a spectacular, dangerous world. You will not soon forget this story of learning to accept the gifts that fate and love can bring." (Robert Morgan, author of Gap Creek )

"Eowyn Ivey's exquisite debut transports the reader away to a world almost out of time, into a fairytale destined to both chill and delight. Her portrayal of an untamed Alaska is so detailed you can feel the snowflakes on your own eyelashes, even as her characters' desperate quest for, and ultimate redemption by, love will warm your heart." (Melanie Benjamin, author of Alice I Have Been )

"Magical, yes, but THE SNOW CHILD is also satisfyingly realistic in its depiction of 1920s homestead-era Alaska and the people who settled there, including an older couple bound together by resilient love. Eowyn Ivey's poignant debut novel grabbed me from the very first pages and made me wish we had more genre-defying Alaska novels like this one. Inspired by a fairy tale, it nonetheless contains more depth and truth than so many books set in this land of extremes." (Andromeda Romano-Lax, author of The Spanish Bow )

"This book is real magic, shot through from cover to cover with the cold, wild beauty of the Alaskan frontier. Eowyn Ivey writes with all the captivating delicacy of the snowfalls she so beautifully describes." (Ali Shaw, author of The Girl with Glass Feet )

Product Details

  • File Size: 710 KB
  • Print Length: 404 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: B00F6E3O6W
  • Publisher: Reagan Arthur Books; 1 edition (February 1, 2012)
  • Sold by: Hachette Book Group
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004RD856M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,159 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
488 of 500 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beauty, Ferocity, Joy and Sorrow January 26, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Having lived in Fairbanks, Alaska for 44 years, I was very anxious to read this book. It has an Alaskan theme and is touted as being written in the style of magical realism. I love literary fiction that is rich in characterization and language and this book has an abundance of both. It is bound to be one of the best books I'll read in 2012. The story is beautifully rendered and rich with metaphor. I could hardly bear to put it down.

Mabel and Jack are homesteaders who come to Alaska rather late in their lives. They are both close to fifty years old when they begin their Alaskan venture near the Wolverine river way in the backcountry. The story opens with Mabel contemplating suicide. She describes Alaska after her failed suicide attempt as a place of "beauty that ripped you open and scoured you clean so that you were left helpless and exposed, if you lived at all". She and Jack are growing apart rather than closer and she misses him desperately. Slowly, they become friends with their closest neighbors, Esther and George, and this helps Mabel some. However, she says of Jack, "they were going to be partners, she and Jack. This was going to be their new life together. Now he sat laughing with strangers when he hadn't smiled at her in years".

Mabel comes from an intellectual family - her father is a professor of literature at the University of Pennsylvania. She feels lonely and empty in her cabin. Just before they came to Alaska she gave birth to a stillborn boy. This was one of the primary reasons she wanted to get away from her family. She felt they were always looking at her and judging her as wanting, talking about her as not being a strong woman. Jack is busy with clearing and farming the homestead and he won't let Mabel help with this.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
174 of 180 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fall into The Snow January 31, 2012
Format:Hardcover
Jack and Mabel live in a time where children were expected in a marriage. Mabel so wants to be a mother but she has only had one pregnancy and that ended in an early delivery of a child that did not survive. She and Jack didn't talk about it they just thought a fresh start was in order so they pulled up roots and started a homestead in Alaska. She with one set of dreams, he with another. Both not expressing them, both not talking, both afraid of the past, both trying to escape, both still yearning for a child.

Mabel sees Alaska as a way to escape from all of the pity she sees in the eyes of family and friends. She just wants life to be her and Jack. Jack knows they can't make it in such a harsh land alone. He is too old to be breaking the land. He needs help. Mabel feels at fault for her inability to give him children but Jack does not blame her...

Just at the right time a boisterous family comes into their life to help them manage their homestead. A family with three strong children. A woman who starts to bring Mabel out of her shell. Also at this time their appears a mystical child. A child that appears the day after Jack and Mabel make a small snowgirl. Is she real or is she a manifestation of all of Mabel's hopes and dreams?

I cannot tell you the joy I found in this book. Despite the overall sadness of the main theme there was much to celebrate within. Faina, the snow child was a delight! In writing her dialog no quotation marks are used so you "hear" it in your head and wonder if she is real or not. She came to me as a whisper on a breeze. I felt as if I had been dropped into a snowglobe and was living in some kind of mystical snow world. The writing almost surrounded me and then fell like the little pieces of snow.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
124 of 133 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lives Transformed by Magical Child January 27, 2012
Format:Hardcover
Does anyone really belong to you? If you think of children or spouses in this regard, The Snow Child will stop you cold.

In the 1920's Mabel and Jack settle along the Wolverine River in Alaska. They hope the challenge of homesteading in the wild will wipe away years of grief and give them a fresh start. Instead, they find that work and isolation rule. The hardship of everyday life cuts away at their spirits. Cash is scarce. Hope dimmed. As the cold bites, each tries to survive in their own way.

After a fresh snowfall, they build a snow child in a moment of much-needed frivolity. When they awaken the next morning the snow child is demolished and the hand-knit mittens and scarf they draped on it are gone.

Jack sees a small girl running in the snow. When Mabel glimpses the blond girl, it unifies them. Jack hunts for a moose to keep them from starving in the winter. When he is ready to give up, the magical little girl appears and leads him to a moose. Food for winter is secured.

The little snow girl, Faina has frosty lashes, a cool blue stare, and is always accompanied by a red wolf. She seems otherworldly and Mabel and Jack find her appearances and disappearances disconcerting. They continue to try to maintain contact with her, but she remains elusive. Faina dictates the terms upon which the relationship grows. She brings to them physical gifts, but most importantly she offers hope and love.

The writing in this enchanting book is beautiful. Its direct simplicity reflects the austerity of the Alaskan atmosphere. The wilderness itself is an important character. Jack reflects on the land flowing with milk and honey that was to give up moose, caribou and bears. "What a different truth he found. Alaska gave up nothing easily.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars well written, layered depth of emotions
This is such a good read, you can see and smell the things described. The emotions run true to the story told. Very believable story. Could not put it down.
Published 3 hours ago by Wgtn whites
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
Don't know what I was expecting but this wasn't it. I liked how the snow child restored the closeness in their marriage, but I never really understood the part about her father and... Read more
Published 13 hours ago by M. K. Maclean
5.0 out of 5 stars A good read.
This story was different and I liked the way it was written. It was our book group choice...and I'm so glad to have read the mystic story.
Published 18 hours ago by Greg Hritz
5.0 out of 5 stars If you're on the fence, as I was, I'd say take a chance!
I hesitated for a long time before buying this book because I'm a realist at heart and this sounded too far-fetched. Read more
Published 2 days ago by eastcoast
5.0 out of 5 stars Ms. Ivey- please write more novels!
Beautifully written, Author has the talent to give reader's the ability to "feel" the landscape and also the emotions of the characters. Read more
Published 3 days ago by jim rapin
4.0 out of 5 stars She is Real
This is a fantastical novel ,yet so well written that it is totally believable. The character development is particularly well done. I mourned the book ending
Published 5 days ago by Sallie Crittendon
4.0 out of 5 stars A Nice Read
First let me say that I enjoyed this book. I thought it was a nice little read. Written in a very simple and straightforward style and without the burden of developing complicated... Read more
Published 5 days ago by Chris Jamison
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully descriptive!
Excellent depiction of life in Alaska in the early 20th century. I loved how ambiguous the magical aspect of the story was!
Published 7 days ago by Lauren
4.0 out of 5 stars An intelligent, exciting read
Part fairy tale, part mystery, I enjoyed the character development and a glimpse into the life in Alaska in the time period described. Read more
Published 7 days ago by Linda S.Purdy
5.0 out of 5 stars Review of The Snow Child
This was a lovely mix of fantasy and reality in a wild and beautiful setting. I enjoyed the escape very much.
Published 8 days ago by Amazon Customer
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Book Extras from the Shelfari Community

(What's this?)

To add, correct, or read more Book Extras for The Snow Child , visit Shelfari, an Amazon.com company.


More About the Author

Eowyn (pronounced A-o-win) Ivey was raised in Alaska and continues to live there with her husband and two daughters. Her mother named her after a character from J. R. R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings.

Eowyn works at the independent bookstore Fireside Books where she plays matchmaker between readers and books. The Snow Child is her debut novel.

The Snow Child is informed by Eowyn's life in Alaska. Her husband is a fishery biologist with the state of Alaska. While they both work outside of the home, they are also raising their daughters in the rural, largely subsistence lifestyle in which they were both raised.

As a family, they harvest salmon and wild berries, keep a vegetable garden, turkeys and chickens, and they hunt caribou and moose for meat. Because they don't have a well and live outside any public water system, they haul water each week for their holding tank and gather rainwater for their animals and garden. Their primary source of home heat is a woodstove, and they harvest and cut their own wood.

These activities are important to Eowyn's day-to-day life as well as the rhythm of her year.

To learn more about her life in Alaska, visit her blog Letters from Alaska at lettersfromalaska.wordpress.com.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?



Forums

Topic From this Discussion
Music for the trailer Be the first to reply
Have something you'd like to share about this product?
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 


Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Customers Who Highlighted This Item Also Highlighted


Look for Similar Items by Category


ARRAY(0x9e53ccb4)