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Wolf in the snow
2017
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Author Notes
Matthew Cordell is the Caldecott award-winning author and illustrator of Wolf in the Snow, Trouble Gum , Another Brother , hello! hello! , and Wish . He has illustrated numerous books by renowned authors including Philip Stead ( Special Delivery ), Rachel Vail (the Justin Case series), and Gail Carson Levine ( Forgive Me, I Meant to Do It: False Apology Poems ). He lives with his family in Gurnee, Illinois.
Fiction/Biography Profile
Genre
Fiction
Juvenile
Topics
Imagination
Baby animals
Friendship
Winter
Seasons
Animals
Foxes
Snow
Wolves
Large Cover Image
Trade Reviews

  Publishers Weekly Review

Caught in a blizzard on her way home from school, a girl in a red parka discovers a wolf pup left behind by its pack. Cordell's story is wordless, but there's a soundtrack: the cub whines, and distant howls reveal the pack's presence over the next hill. The snow is deep, and the girl is tired, but she puts the pup first, scooping it up and heading toward the howls, undaunted by frightening encounters along the way. Cordell (Leaps and Bounce) uses his customary light and loopy scrawl for the girl, but the bristling fur and open mouths of the wolves are startlingly real. The mother wolf comes to meet them: her golden eyes blaze, and she growls softly. But she's grateful, and when the girl collapses going home, the pack shows its gratitude in an unexpected way. Cozy vignettes, framed in rough circles, help reassure readers that the story will end well, and so does a tender opening portrait of the family. The girl's story is a hero's journey, and Cordell tells it with skill and heart. Ages 2-6. Agent: Rosemary Stimola, Stimola Literary Studio. (Jan.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

  School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 2-In this mostly wordless picture book, a girl gets lost in a snowstorm while walking home from school. At the same time, a wolf pup gets separated from its pack. The girl discovers the pup and carries it through dangerous and icy terrain to reconnect with its pack, and the wolves assist the girl by howling to attract her searching family. Cordell's artistic approach is a little more free-form than in his past titles. It works well in depicting the twisting trees in the snowstorm but is more challenging to pull off with the characterization of the girl. Yet he succeeds. Only her eyes are visible in her large red triangular parka, with a scarf across her mouth and nose, as she trudges through the snow; there is so much emotion in her eyes that viewers know all that they need to know about this almost comically bundled, shapeless figure. Cordell's landscapes do a wonderful job showing the vastness and desperation of the girl's journey, his blended watercolors of the snow and trees adding eloquence to the experience. VERDICT A heartwarming adventure about helping others, best shared one-on-one to pore over the engaging images.-Peter Blenski, Greenfield Public Library, WI © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

  Booklist Review

*Starred Review* In parallel opening spreads, a little girl says good-bye to her parents and dog as she heads off to school, and a wolf cub ranges across the field with his pack. At day's end, the girl, wearing a bright red coat and hood (catch that allusion!), heads home as snow begins to fall. The snow thickens across the subsequent pages, and soon she is lost, just as the wolf cub is separated from his pack in the storm. A chance encounter leads to a moment of solidarity: when the wolf cub sinks in the snow, the girl scoops him up, carrying him towards the distant howls of his family. He's home safe, but she's still lost until the wolves, realizing a debt is owed, return for her, and their howls bring her own family. This nearly wordless picture book is a tender, never precious story of kindness and cooperation. The ink-and-watercolor illustrations, though simple, are packed with emotion, while the minimal text relays only sounds: the distant howls of the wolves, the whines of the wolf cub, the girl's huffs of breath as she struggles through the snow. Cordell's wolves aren't cuddly cartoons by any means, but neither are they monsters; instead, they're realistically depicted wild animals who inherently understand loyalty. Expect this wintry tale to bring only warmth.--Reagan, Maggie Copyright 2016 Booklist

  Horn Book Review

A series of illustrations before the title page sets the scene: a prairie landscape in winter, home to both humans and wolves. Setting off alone toward home from school as a blizzard descends, a bundled-up child in a red hooded parka encounters a small, vulnerable, lost wolf pup. Using the howls of the wolfs faraway pack for direction, the child carries the pup over fields and hills, across streams, and through the forest (and past intimidating forest-dwelling creatures) to deliver it to its family. When the child, exhausted, collapses in the snow on the return trip, the wolves repay the favor by staying with the small human and howling until, guided by the wolves cries, the childs parents arrive. Cordells pen-and-ink illustrations balance detail and emotion: the wolves appear realistic, while the human faces and figures are stylized and cartoonlike. The setting is brought to life through changing sky colors, cold breaths, and extensive snowscapes in watercolors. The hand-lettered, inky text, wordless except for sound effects, supports the cinematic feel created through the use of varying perspectives and loosely demarcated panels. Suspenseful page-turns and aerial views on double-page spreads keep readers worrying about the protagonist until the very end, when the family is shown by the fireside with steamy mugs and pet doga cozy contrast to the fraught outdoor adventure. elisa gall (c) Copyright 2016. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

  Kirkus Review

A near-wordless story of kindness repaid.As the book starts, readers see a dark-haired, light-skinned family starting their day. A girl in a red, hooded parka bids goodbye to her dog, and with snow beginning to come down, shes off to school. As it happens, a wolf pack is also on the move. On her way home the snow has intensified. In a dramatic two-page spread the wolf pack can be seen walking in the girls direction, clouds of steamy air coming out of mouths filled with pointy teeth. As the girl trudges on, head lowered to the falling snow, and the wolf pack also trudges on, a wolf cub is left behind. Eventually, the girl and the scared, lost cub meet. Hearing the wolf pack howling in the distance, the girl takes the cub and, facing many perils, reunites cub and pack. Now exhausted and unable to move on, she collapses in the snow. The grateful pack returns favor for favor, and as its members surround and protect the girl, they howl in a call to her family, who has been out looking for her. The last page shows the family warm and safe back home. What distinguishes this book are the many feelings that Cordells pen-and-inkwith-watercolor illustrations capture so wellcold, fear, courage, exhaustion, reliefkeeping readers hooked to the end. Deeply satisfying. (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Summary
<p> Winner of the 2018 Caldecott Medal </p> <p>A girl is lost in a snowstorm. A wolf cub is lost, too. How will they find their way home?</p> <p>Paintings rich with feeling tell this satisfying story of friendship and trust. Here is a book set on a wintry night that will spark imaginations and warm hearts, from Matthew Cordell, author of Trouble Gum and Another Brother .</p>
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