Friday, December 28, 2012

Snowflake Bentley

by Jacqueline Briggs Martin
illustrated by Mary Azarian
Houghton Mifflin | 1998
Buy it here!

This Caldecott Medal book is about William Bentley, who discovered much of what was known about snow crystals during his lifetime. Born in 1865, as a boy in Jericho, Vermont, he spent the long winters there determined to make photographs of snowflakes. After a lot of trial and error, he learned how.

Azarian's gorgeous woodcut prints, which according to the copyright page are hand-tinted with watercolor, couldn't be more perfect for the story and it's no wonder they won the Caldecott. It's clear through her artwork that Azarian is not only a Vermonter, but a snow-lover. And indeed, her dedication in the book reads: "For all the snow lovers of the world, who--like me--think that snow is like chocolate; there is never enough."

As a snow and winter lover myself, I find this is the perfect book with which to curl up next to the fire. Snuggle in with someone and read about Snowflake Bentley. This book is as unique as the snowflakes Bentley found so fascinating.

One of W.A. Bentley's photographs.

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