Over and Under the Snow


by Kate Messner and Christopher Silas Neal

Settle in for a bit. This book will warm your soul.

Absolutely zero snow falls in southern California this time of year, or any time of year really, but this book makes me feel like I am deep in the middle of a winter wonderland.

Kate Messner’s words are hushed and poetic; she is such a beautiful writer. And we tweeted each other once about Ramona Quimby, so I’m an extra huge fan. I love this post by her editor on her words’ rhythms. And Christopher Silas Neal’s art is stunning. The tiny animals are vibrant against the stark snow, and page by page, this quiet walk bursts with life. This post by both Kate and Christopher is a great glimpse into the process of making this book. Go ahead.

You certainly don’t have to be a writer or artist to appreciate this book, but those bits in me make me crazy for this one.


I especially love the use of color in the illustrations. The cool grays and blues are balanced by our girl’s red knits, a pouncing fox, and a roaring bonfire back home.

White snowflakes scatter over the shadows.

And the sky — I love the sky — it changes from a warm blue, to a cloudy purple, to a deep midnight navy over the course of the book. A gorgeous transformation over the course of this jaunt through the snow.

Add this one to your winter collection! And this little blog wishes you a lovely holiday season. See you back here in 2013?



  • tinamcho
    Posted December 25, 2012 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

    Beautiful post and picture book! Thanks for the links. I enjoyed reading the backstory. The Chronicle Blog post was very insightful!

  • Posted December 30, 2012 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

    I read this book to a group of 1st graders and they loved it. Nice write-up and thanks for the links.

  • Posted February 14, 2013 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    What a beautiful book. I have reblogged on Travel with Intent -http://travelwithintent.com/2013/02/14/709/

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