Snowy World Book Day 2018! (And some cosy reading suggestions for snowy days)

As I am sure you're aware, the 22nd World Book Day was yesterday, 1 March 2018. And I am also sure you are aware that throughout the UK and Ireland, many, many events were cancelled this week due to snow. Yes, snow. Very unusual.
Some events still went forward, but there are a lot of disappointed children (and booksellers!) who look forward to this day; planning their costumes, meeting authors and illustrators and sharing a love of books and stories that will last a lifetime. But never are being rescheduled and our bookish spirits are not dampened!
Those wonderful people at World Book Day have decided that,they want to make certain that as many children as possible have the opportunity to use the £1/€1.50 World Book Day tokens. Since the weather has been so cold and snowy (and frankly, weird for this part of the world) and so much has been at a standstill, World Book Day is going to extend the redemption period of the vouchers. You will now be able to use the vouchers beyond Sunday 25 March. Just keep checking the website for confirmation of the extension date!

Personally, I've used the last 2 snow days to catch up on some snowy reading. My favourite is the absolute classic (and completely joyous & ground-breaking) picture book, The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats. You simply cannot beat this wonderful story about Jack, a small boy who sets off on a delightful adventure through his local neighbourhood, magically transformed by snow. I am also really loving SnowBoy and the Last Tree Standing by Hiawyn Oram; a sensitive, contemporary story with a strong environmental message and incredible illustrations by Birgitta Sif. Raven Child and the Snow Witch by Linda Sunderland/illustrated by Daniel Egneus reads like a classic fairy tale set in a wondrous arctic landscape abounding with magic and drama. And The Story Blanket by Ferida Wolff & Harriet May Savitz, illustrated by the amazing Elena Odriozola is the perfect warm, cosy, reassuring story about Babba Zarrah, who unravels her beautiful woolen story blanket in order to knit the clothes needed for the children who come to hear her stories.
Of course, I have many suggestions for those who want more than a picture book on snowy days. A few of my cold weather recommendations to capture the enchantment and evoke the texture and adventure of those magical wintry days: Twistrose Key by Tone Amhjell has a real Narnia feel to it and is perfect for those who want a stirring adventure in the land beyond this life. If you have (or can find) a copy of North Child by Edith Pattou, hang on to it and read it again and again. This is an incredibly beautiful retelling of East of the Sun, West of the Moon. And you simply cannot have a snowy day without Moominland Midwinter by Tove Jansson. must read this. If we have a look at some newer books out, these have quickly become 'must-reads' as far as I'm concerned and they all have that winter/snow theme in common: The Polar Bear Explorers' Club by Alex Bell for a plucky, determined female hero and a real adventure of exploration and discovery; Astrid the Unstoppable by Maria Parr gives us discovery of a different kind and a character that will remind you of both Heidi and Pippi Longstocking; and Sky Song by Abi Elphinstone which takes us to Erkenwald, a glacial kingdom under the control of the (truly) evil Ice Queen and Eska and Flint, two children who may be able to change the fate of Erkenwald forever.
So much to chose from! And being snowed-in is the perfect excuse to curl up in a cosy corner and read. And rest assured that, while we may be fighting off the cold now, spring is just around the corner as all of these books will confirm.


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