Snow Day, The.jpg

The Snow Day

Written & Illustrated by Komako Sakai

The best snowy day book since Ezra Jack Keats!

One morning
a little rabbit awakes
to find snow

That means
snow monsters.

But will Daddy
be able to get home?

Whatever the season,
you can open this book
and enjoy the fun
of a snow day.

Reviews and Awards

Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2009
New York Public Library’s One Hundred Titles for Reading and Sharing, 2009
New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Books, 2009
Kirkus Reviews Best Children's Books of 2009
BCCB Blue Ribbon Book 2009
Smithsonian Notable Book of 2009
Booklist Editors’ Choices for 2009 

⋆ "A five-year-old (rabbit) awakes one morning to discover that there will be no school, no daddy flying home today, and no going out outside–until the snow stops. Sakai clearly understands the predicament of being cooped up in an urban high rise: trying to stay entertained with games, constantly gazing out the window, being lured by the balcony. Her subdued palette and minimalist text suggest the blanketed sound produced by a heavy snowfall. Window-shaped frames with tight cropping contain the energy in the interior scenes; most exterior compositions bleed off the page–oh marvelous freedom! The layers of paint are applied to a black ground with a combination of wet and dry brushes, producing a convincing depth and texture; the darkness is a perfect foil for the cottony bright snowflakes. While the mother may appear overprotective about her bunny’s health, she does relent when the snow stops, even though it is bedtime, and the pair enjoys a nocturnal adventure. The protagonist narrates in the first person; thus, the sentences are appropriately concise, yet with lovely rhythms and interesting details. (He ultimately makes snowballs and snow dumplings.) Atmospheric, tender, full of anticipation and satisfaction, this one will charm young children. In Leonid Gore’s Danny’s First Snow (S & S, 2007), a young rabbit, possessed of an active imagination, is encountering white creatures at every turn. Used together, the two books provide contrasting emotional and visual experiences of a universally beloved phenomenon (at least by young rabbits/children)." - School Library Journal, starred review

⋆ "Little rabbit wakes to find it’s been snowing all night long. Excited about the snow day, the pajama-clad tyke bolts for the door, but Mommy doesn’t want her little one to catch cold. Together they must wait for the storm to subside, and the dark-lit day is filled with a series of quiet, intimate moments: Little rabbit makes a snow dumpling on the apartment balcony; mother and offspring play cards to pass the time; the two silently watch the snow fall and feel the solitude of the empty streets. “Mommy, we are all alone in the world,” says the meditative bunny as the snow swirls around them, creating a vast canvas of white and grey. Sakai’s muted palette and grainy illustrations perfectly capture the quiet, opaque atmosphere of a snowy day. The cant of rabbit’s ears and clever compositions subtly indicate the little one’s emotional state: Tighter, denser compositions denote when rabbit is safe inside; open, expansive urban landscapes with ample negative space capture the freedom of playing in fresh-fallen snow. A reassuring story, perfect for a winter’s day." - Kirkus Reviews, starred review

⋆ “Most books about snow days focus on the sheer exuberance of an unexpected day off from school. This story, as quiet as falling snow, evocatively chronicles the noticeable stillness when a little rabbit awakens to his mother’s news that “Kindergarten’s closed.” Scrambling to the snow-splotched window, the boy looks wonderingly outside. So begins a very special day that has action and inaction in equal parts. There are many things that won’t get done: Mommy is unable to go to the store; Daddy’s flight is canceled, and he can’t get home. But the day is more than waiting for the snow to stop. The boy plays cards with his mother, sneaks out on the balcony to make “snow dumplings,” and finally, just before bedtime, goes outside to make footprints in the unsullied snow. As precisely crafted as a snowflake, the words take on a weight and wonder in Sakai’s thickly layered paintings. Half-page, full-page, two-page spreads, they use the grays of a winter’s day—and night—to capture the feeling of being alone in an icy world and celebrating the rare moments of having the world to yourself.” - Booklist, starred review

⋆ “Snow has been falling all night, and when a small rabbit awakens, he learns that kindergarten is closed, his mother can't go to the store, and his father's flight home has been canceled. “Mommy, we are all alone in the world,” he announces solemnly, and even though he's clearly safe and sound in an apartment with all the modern comforts, readers will understand his bittersweet feelings of isolation and solitude. Sakai (Emily's Balloon) takes a very different approach in these pages: focusing more on setting and mood than characterization, she turns each illustration into a vivid snapshot (Mommy on the phone with stranded Daddy, an outdoor hug before the dash back indoors). Against a palette of grays and muted colors, she uses the yellow of the rabbit's jacket or boots to focus the reader's gaze, and layers the paints to suggest the intimacy and coziness of the hearth, the eerie but irresistible starkness of a landscape transformed by snow.” - Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Much like the sight of falling snow, the muted illustrations enhance the quiet, cozy feel of this tender tale.” - Time Out New York Kids

“The palette of grays and whites reinforces the sense of profound quiet that snow bequeaths our busy world, creating room for wonder.” - Washington Post

Purchase Options
Indiebound • Amazon • Barnes & Noble

Spring 2009
Picture Book
ISBN: 0-545-01321-6
Price: $16.99 US / $18.99 CAN
Trim Size: 8 1/4" x 9 1/4"
Page Count: 40
Foreign Rights: Gakken Co. Ltd./Japan Foreign Rights Centre
Translation Rights: Gakken Co. Ltd./Japan Foreign Rights Centre
Rights Available? yes

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