December Book Reviews

Winter is nearly here and more books will be arriving in mailboxes soon! Here are mini-reviews for a winter favorite and a heartwarming story by the incredible Dolly herself!

The Snowy Day
by Ezra Jack Keats

When Peter awakens to find snow has fallen overnight, he rushes to go play outside. He makes tracks in the snow, watches older kids having a snowball fight, makes a snowman and snow angels. His mother helps Peter get into a warm bath at the end of the day and he thinks about the fun he’s had in this charming story.

“He dragged his feet s-l-o-w-l-y to make tracks.”

A story like this is timeless and is a pleasant reminder of the simple things in life. Talk about Peter’s feelings and the things he did in the snow. You can even take a nature stroll in your neighborhood with your child or visit a local park. Talk about the things you see—flowers, trees, the sky—and how they look different at different times of the year.

Ezra Jack Keats was awarded the Caldecott Medal for The Snowy Day in 1962 which was considered a groundbreaking book at the time for it’s portrayal of a young boy living in an urban setting. The story was adapted into a charming short film several years ago for Amazon. Keats wrote a handful of other children’s books about Peter, his most famous character, including A Whistle for Willie.

Coat of Many Colors
by Dolly Parton, illustrated by Brooke Boynton Hughes

Lyrics from the famous song tell the story of Parton as a little girl growing up in the mountains of Tennessee. The fourth of twelve children, Dolly’s family lived in poverty. Given a box of rags, her mother made her a colorful, patchwork coat as the weather turned colder. Dolly loved the coat and the story her mama told her while she created it with love “in every stitch.”

“Mama sewed the rags together, sewin’ every piece with love.”

Paired with beautiful watercolors in soft pastels, Dolly’s childhood comes to life in this sweet picture book. The story provides a good opportunity to discuss kindness and compassion for others.

Dolly Parton is a country music legend as well as an actress, businesswoman and philanthropist. She has also written several books including two picture books for children. Parton is the founder of the early literacy program, The Imagination Library.

Published by wacobookmom

Amanda Urabe has written book reviews for publishing houses such as Simon & Schuster and narrated a reading app for children. Alongside her husband and their two sons, she re-located to Waco three years ago from Los Angeles. Then known as L.A. Book Mom, she maintained a blog and hosted story time at local businesses and farmers markets to promote the joy of reading in her community. With a degree in Education and a passion for literacy, she is thrilled to be working with Imagination Library of Waco.

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