The Snow Rabbit – by Camille Garoche
This enchanting wordless picture book follows two sisters (one in a wheelchair) as they are led on snowy adventures by a magical rabbit. The illustrations seem almost incandescent, created with paper cutout dioramas that are then photographed in perfect lighting. These unusual illustrations give a true depth and richness to the visual aspect of the book. The story has a depth of emotion as well — for being told entirely in pictures, I found it to be quite moving.
Snow – by Uri Shulevitz
To me, this book embodies the typical contrast between a child’s excitement about snow and adult annoyance towards it. In this story, we find a child and his dog walking through a drab, gray landscape. They hear both the radio and the adults around them saying that there will be no snow. Yet they see a flake. Flake by flake, the snow changes the landscape around them and the entire aura of the book fills with beauty and magic.
Snowballs – by Lois Ehlert
Lois Ehlert has wonderful books relating to all of the seasons, and her illustrations never cease to surprise me. In this book, she uses found-object collages to explore the tradition of making snowmen — or a snow family, rather. She introduces us to the various members of her snow family, replete with pets, and the buttons, leaves, and felt that she uses to express their personalities inspire creativity. After I read this book to my son, he wanted to make his own snow family collages — after he’d been outside to make a real snowman, of course!
The Snowy Day – by Ezra Jack Keats
No collection of picture books about snow would be complete without this classic tale. The illustrations are lovely and the story is timeless — a young boy wakes up to snow and goes out to explore. He knocks snow off trees, makes snow angels, and wonders when he will be big enough to join in the older kids’ snowball fight. He puts a snowball in his pocket to save for later, and is concerned at its subsequent disappearance. The mixture of collage and watercolor in the illustrations gives a beautiful tone to the book.
The Mitten – by Jan Brett
So many of Jan Brett’s stories feature snow, but this is one of my favorites. A boy receives hand-knit mittens from his grandmother, and she warns him not to lose them in the snow — especially because they’re white and he won’t be able to find them again until the snow melts in spring. He proceeds to lose one, but a series of animals make use of it as a warm shelter from the snow. The illustrations are wonderful, and they feature Jan Brett’s trademark frames around each page. These frames are wonderful for young children — make sure they look closely for the special surprises in the frames!
Blizzard – by John Rocco
The author tells of his own childhood experience with the blizzard of 1978 — from the initial excitement of the first few snowflakes to the way his street seems transformed into an alien landscape and then to the worry of beginning to run out of food. Since he is the only member of his family who can walk on top of the snow, he makes the perilous trip out to the store, and stops to interact with neighbors in this strange world of snow along the way. The story has a jaunty, excitable feel to it, and is a wonderful snowy adventure to share with children!