A quick, season-centered look-about from a master of paper engineering.
Though small of trim size and, at just six openings, not exactly a magnum opus, this survey of a snow-covered country landscape as night falls is well-stocked with visual surprises and late winter sights—some of them mildly oddball. These are placed around a half-dozen elegantly simple pop-up flurries of snowflakes or seasonal flora. There’s fauna too, from a snowshoe hare and an alert bobcat to a pair of white weasels who stare quizzically up at viewers in each scene before finally bedding down beneath a flap. Even to very young children, Carter may seem to go a bit overboard by labeling “cloud,” “sun,” and “moon” along with the at least slightly less recognizable “holly,” a leafless “oak tree,” “animal tracks,” and “Venus.” Oddly, to such predictable elements as a snowman, a pine tree, and sprigs of snowberries (all likewise labeled) poking through the white, he adds camellias in bloom, a spray of flowering heather, and even stalks of parasitic, garish red “snowflower.”
The labels may prove more distracting than illuminating, but this isn’t quite the usual sort of stop on the well-worn seasonal round. (Pop-up picture book. 3-5)