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Twelve Kinds of Iceby Ellen Obed
Synopses & Reviews
With the first ice—a skim so thin, it breaks when touched—one familys winter begins in earnest. Next comes ice like panes of glass, and then ice too thick to crush with the heels of boots. Then suddenly, ice that is ready for skating! Twelve Kinds of Ice takes a literary skate over field ice and streambed, winter lake and icy pasture, on frozen garden, through sleeping orchard, and beyond. The first ice, the second ice, the third ice . . . perfect ice . . . counting ice . . . the last ice . . . Twelve kinds of ice are carved into twenty vignettes by award-winning illustrator Barbara McClintock, each exulting the beauty of ice and ice skating that comes year after year.
"Like a souvenir from a bygone era, this homage to rural winter celebrates the gradual freezing of barn buckets and fields, the happy heights of ice-skating season, and the inevitable spring thaw. Obed (Who Would Like a Christmas Tree?) crafts an autobiographical first-person narrative of a farm family and lists her dozen crystalline varieties in ascending order. 'First Ice' glazes 'the sheep pails in the barn'; a second heftier ice lifts 'like panes of glass.... in our mittened hands'; another ice, thicker still, heralds after-school skating. Short-lived pleasures, like sinister see-through 'black ice' on Maine's Great Pond, give way to homespun fun on a DIY rink built on the vegetable patch. McClintock (A Child's Garden of Verses) sets cozy mid — 20th century scenes with her crosshatched pen-and-ink illustrations; children, bundled in woolly layers, imagine themselves Olympic figure skaters and twirl to the sound of 'John Philip Sousa marches, Strauss waltzes, Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals.' This quaint volume could have been written 60 years ago, alongside One Morning in Maine and The Little Island. Today's readers will marvel at the old-fashioned amusements, chronicled with folksy charm. Ages 6 — 9." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Award-winning illustrator Barbara McClintock renders Ellen Obeds timeless text in a wintery scape for young readers. Warm icy hands on this fine winter read.
At Helenand#8217;s home, there are no telephones or electric lights. Cars have not yet been invented, so she and her sister and brothers must walk a mile to school, even in freezing weather. Without refrigeration, they must harvest ice from the pond.
But at night she and her family gather around the woodstove to hear stories of castles and princes in hiding. They take horse-drawn sleigh rides, snug under buffalo robes and wool blankets; skate in the moonlight; and on Christmas morning have real maple syrup for breakfast.
With absorbing details of country life and elegant, hand-colored woodcuts, this book captures the strength of family, the magic of Christmas, and the love of place all year long.
“This is a joyful, spirited gem of a book, as bracing and glorious as a perfect stretch of ice.” -Newbery Honor author Joyce Sidman
With the first ice—a skim on a sheep pail so thin it breaks when touched—one familys winter begins in earnest. Next comes ice like panes of glass. And eventually, skating ice! Take a literary skate over field ice and streambed, through sleeping orchards and beyond. The first ice, the second ice, the third ice . . . perfect ice . . . the last ice . . . Twelve kinds of ice are carved into twenty nostalgic vignettes, illustrated in elegantly scratched detail by the award-winning Barbara McClintock.
About the Author
Ellen Bryan Obed grew up on a six-acre farm in Waterville, Maine, where she and her siblings waited for the first ice as most children wait for summer or Christmas or a birthday.
Ellen now lives with her husband in Dover-Foxcroft, Maine. There they experience many kinds of ice coming each winter to area streams, lakes, and ponds, and to the nearby Piscataquis River.
Award-winning illustrator Barbara McClintock's art has enhanced many children's stories with fanciful costumes and incredible charming details. She is the author and illustrator of several books for children, including The Fantastic Drawings of Danielle, The Battle of Luke and Longnose, and Dahlia. She lives in Connecticut.
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