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Big Snow

Big Snow Cover

Big Snow

By Jonathan Bean; Jonathan Bean (Illustrator)

Farrar Straus Giroux, Hardcover, 9780374306960, 32pp.

Publication Date: September 24, 2013


While “helping” his mother with holiday housecleaning, a boy keeps a watchful eye on the progress of a winter storm. He’s hoping for a big snow. A really big snow. Inside, he is underfoot, turning sheet-changing and tub-scrubbing into imaginary whiteouts. Outside, flakes are flying. But over the course of a long day (for Mom) the clouds seem slow on delivering a serious snowfall. Then comes a dreamy naptime adventure, marking just the beginning of high hopes coming true in this irresistible seasonal story.

About the Author
Jonathan Bean received an M.F.A. from New York's School of Visual Arts and now lives and works in Pennsylvania. His first book, At Night, won a 2008 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, and his latest book, Building Our House, was a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice. Jonathan is also the illustrator of two acclaimed picture books by Lauren Thompson, The Apple Pie That Papa Baked and One Starry Night.

Praise For Big Snow

From The Wall Street Journal:

The turn of the season often elicits from children the first wistful conversations about snow: When will it come? How much will there be? These are the questions that consume a preschooler in Jonathan Bean's quietly lovely "Big Snow" (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 32 pages, $16.99). Trailing his mother about the house as she cooks and cleans, "helping" her so enthusiastically that he doubles the work, little David wonders about the weather. As flakes begin to cover the streets, and David's excitement grows, we alternate between snug indoor scenes and the sight of the child's neighborhood disappearing—at last!—beneath a heavy blanket of white. A glimpse of the end of autumn, if not quite yet.

"This delightful picture book charts a child’s excitement over the imminent arrival of a snowstorm. . .This wonderful tale begs to be read aloud." -- School Library Journal

“This is another terrific offering from Bean (Building Our House); his subtly rhythmic prose and elegant, astute watercolors hit just the right notes of comedy, suspense, and fantasy.” 

Publishers Weekly, starred review


*"Winter’s chills, rituals and resulting familial closeness, rendered in simple, surprisingly poignant drawings, make this a perennial read at first frost." -- Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"Bean (Building Our House, 2013) uses soft pastels to depict a warm kitchen, loving parents, and a yellow cat, whose presence can be spied on every page." -- BCCB


"Bean’s superbly patterned text builds anticipation, and his pen-and-ink and watercolor illustrations make clear links between what is going on in David’s imagination and what is happening out in the real world. The warm illustrations showing brown-skinned David’s cozy home provide a nice contrast to the occasional wordless double-page spread showing the outdoors, with an ever-increasing amount of snow. Young readers are sure to identify with David’s longing and excitement." - The Horn Book