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Very young children learn faster from picture books that contain colour photographs than from books with colour drawin... More
Summary: After Father Frost received a letter from Santa asking for help, he sent the Snow Maiden to the North Pole. She was happy, but scared, and after arriving at the North Pole became homesick. Could she really help Santa get ready for his Christmas Eve ride? This is a holiday story that celebrates the true meaning of the season.
Type of Reading: bedtime story, playtieme reading, read aloud book
Recommended Age: read together: 4 to 8; read yourself: 9 to 12
Interest Level: 4 to 8
Age of Child: pending
Young Reader Reaction: review pending
Adult Reader Reaction: The story is sweet, with an 'international' sense about it. It is always nice to find stories where a young girl is a strong character.
Pros: This is a nice alternative to the traditional "Santa" story, as it contrasts and compares the holiday. The Russian vocabulary is fun.
Cons: None, Really. It may take some getting used to the illustrative style. The story is such you want the pictures to be just as wonderful.
Borrow or Buy: This could go either way. DEFINITELY borrow this book. It's worth the read. If you are of Slavic heritage, buy it. This is a great book for celebrating traditions and passing on culture.
Educational Themes: This story can easily go beyond the holiday. It offers details about Russian culture, it creates opportunities to talk about giving, facing your fears, expressing your feelings, and being true to yourself.
Literary Categories: Fiction - Christmas, picture book, bilingual, Russian, fables and folklore, cultures and tradition
Date(s) Reviewed: September 2005
Other Reviews: See Critics' Reviews and reader feedback at amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com.