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Anna's Wish Hardcover – October 1, 2008
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From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 2—It has not snowed in Anna's village for many years. People still own shovels and sleds, but year after year they go unused. Anna's mother tells her daughter stories of winters past, and the girl longs to experience them for herself. As Christmas approaches, she gets out an old sled and wishes for snow so hard that the wishes float up into the air and turn into snowflakes. Originally published in Switzerland, this simple but charming picture book has been skillfully translated. The narrative is smooth and short enough to read aloud, and the acrylic and gouache illustrations are equally appealing. The palette switches between bright Christmas colors, especially around Anna, and the gray winter colors of the town. Rave is skilled at drawing distinctive faces with just a few simple lines. Even passers-by in a crowd have personality. The snowflakes are interesting, too, as no two are alike. For some reason, those on the cover are all exactly alike. Despite this small shortcoming, the book is a welcome choice for libraries looking for new seasonal material.—Donna Cardon, Provo City Library, UT
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In a town that hasn’t seen snow in a generation, Anna and her mother are walking past a bakery when the child suddenly feels “something very soft and cold touch her cheek, as light as a butterfly’s kiss.” When it happens again, Anna associates that feeling with a miniature white horse atop of acake in the shop’s window. After dusting off an old sled and dreaming of snow, she runs to the little horse and wishes for a snowy miracle. The story is enchanting in its climax, yet firmly grounded in a child’s reality. Lively and distinctive, the artwork includes intriguing and sometimes amusing details. From the street scenes to the fascinating cutaway picture view of Anna’s home, the illustrations enhance the narrative with sensitive line work and fine variation of color intensity. Few picture-book artists have used the color gray so effectively. First published in Switzerland, this appealing book would be a fine choice for winter storytimes. Preschool-Kindergarten. --Carolyn Phelan
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Top Customer Reviews
Anna and her mother were walking in front of a bakery window when she "felt something very soft and cold touch her cheek, as light as a butterfly's kiss." People were cutting their Christmas trees and the town appeared to glow with the thought of the holiday season. A week later she felt that cold something on her face again. She asked her mother all about snow and was told the last time she saw the wondrous sight she was just a little girl. They went sledding, built snowmen and stuck out their tongues to catch the unique flakes. Anna dragged an old sled from the basement. "I wish . . . I wish . . . I wish . . . " Can you guess what little Anna wished for?
This is an endearing story with art work to match. Every year little children in the northern climates wait, watch and wish for the first snowfall of the year so they can go out and feel the magic of the season. Children living in more temperate climates who are planning a trip to see snow and are anticipating the venture will enjoy this book as well. All the little snow bunnies of the world will love this one!