Thursday, 12 January 2012

The Snow Child

I know you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but the title design for this novel is just beautiful and it caught my eye in my local Waterstones when it was first released. It is so easy to get caught up in the cold, bleak atmosphere of the landscape and I immediately warmed to the central characters of Jack and Mabel, a couple who have suffered as a lot of pain in their lives and are making a fresh start on their Alaskan homestead.

Mabel has always wanted a child and unfortunately previous events mean that her and Jack were never parents. They live an isolated existence from the nearby town, but after a visit to a local family’s home, they have a rare moment of light-heartedness and make a snow child outside their home. In the morning, the form has disappeared leaving a trail of footsteps and soon a mysterious young girl enters their lives and hearts.

I read this book in just a couple of days as the story really caught my imagination. The best way to describe it is as a very simple, but effective, traditional fairytale. The characters are all likeable, the surroundings are beautiful and the story is suitable for all ages to enjoy. The only negative is that the mystery is never really solved for the reader, but I guess that means that each reader has their own interpretation and explanation for events. I would highly recommend this book, but would suggest waiting until the winter to really enjoy it as the sound of the wind and the feel of the cold really bought this novel to life for me.

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