Story time is the best time of the day. Whether we're snuggled up on the couch or cozy in our pjs before bed, reading stories with my little ones is one of my favorite things to do. Everyone has a favorite book they remember from their childhood, and every day, parents and kids are discovering new classics of their own. There are many fabulous children's books out there, some of which everyone knows about and others we would have never discovered had my son not simply pulled a random book off a library shelf. I created this blog to share some of these wonderful stories with you. Think of it as a year's worth of the best children's books around, since no day should be without a great story. In the end, I hope we'll all have discovered at least a few new titles that will have made their way onto our list of family favorites. Enjoy!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Day 130: Owl Moon

Owl Moon is one of our favorite wintertime reads.  Together, author Jane Yolen and illustrator John Schoenherr have created a beautiful masterpiece about a young girl's owling adventure with her father.  "It was late one winter night, long past my bedtime, when Pa and I went owling.  There was no wind.  The trees stood still as giant statues.  And the moon was so bright the sky seemed to shine."  Father and daughter head into the cold, wintry woods in search of a great horned owl.  Throughout the story, Yolen's descriptive verse enables us to feel the girl's growing anticipation and excitement at the prospect of finally seeing one, the way her brothers have before her.  I also love the way we can feel the cold of the night throughout the book, and I am always reminded me of how my cousins and I used to cross-country ski in the moonlight on my grandmother's farm when we were younger.  Anyone who has taken a walk on a cold winter night will appreciate such descriptions as, "I could feel the cold, as if someone's icy hand was palm-down on my back.  And my nose and the tops of my cheeks felt cold and hot at the same time."  Or, "My mouth felt furry, for the scarf over it was wet and warm."  I just love that particular line for some reason.  Schoenherr's illustrations, which earned the book the Caldecott Medal in 1988, are a stunning complement to Yolen's story, as well.  From the darkness of the woods to the blue light cast by moonlight on the snow, his watercolor illustrations are simply gorgeous.  If you haven't yet discovered this wonderful winter tale (or other books by Jane Yolen), look for it the next time you are at your library.  It is perfect for reading on a cold winter night or at any time of year.


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