Sunday, April 22, 2012
The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey
"The girl's hair was white-blond, but when Mabel studied it, she saw that woven and twisted among the strands were gray-green lichens, wild yellow grasses, and curled bits of birch bark. It was strange and lovely, like a wild bird's nest."
Could she actually be the child they made from snow the previous night? Will she stay on with them when winter ends?
Ivey's evocation of homestead life reminded me of Willa Cather's My Antonia, but with an added element of magic realism. Readalikes that have both realism and a fairytale quality include: The Old Country (Mordicai Gerstein); The Book of Everything (Guus Kuijer); The Pull of the Ocean (Jean-Claude Mourlevat); Jackdaw Summer (also called Raven Summer - David Almond); Impossible (Nancy Werlin); and The Ghost's Child (Sonya Harnett). I think adults who like The Snow Child will enjoy any of these, even though they happen to be aimed at a younger audience.