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The Snow Child

Eowyn Ivey
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Are you Missing Winter?

I’m not! But I did enjoy the chilly but powerful tale, The Snow Child, by Alaskan author Eowyn Ivey.   Married couple Mabel and Jack flee their comfortable Pennsylvania lives for harsh wilderness of 1920’s Alaska in an attempt to escape their enduring sorrow over their inability to have children. One night, feeling unusually lighthearted, the two fashion a girl from snow outside their cabin. The next morning, the sculpture is reduced to a lump; the scarf and mittens are nowhere to be found. But over the next several days, both Jack and Mabel spot a small, blonde girl at the edge of the woods near their home, on her own in the harsh environment. They see footprints in the snow. No one seems to know of a child in the area. No one seems to believe in a child in the area. But eventually Jack and Mabel forge a relationship with this almost feral and quite possibly otherworldly girl, named Faina.  Mabel is reminded of a Russian fairy tale about a snow maiden in which the snow child comes in the winter and disappears every spring.  Is Faina real or imagined? Can Jack and Mabel survive the extreme conditions of their homestead?  The Snow Child meshes reality and fairly tale into a moving and evocative novel.    ---- Lori Siegel, Reader Services