Monday, September 9, 2019

Review - Winter Sleep: A Hibernation Story

Winter Sleep: A Hibernation Story
by Sean Taylor & Alex Morss
illustrated by Cinyee Chiu
Date: 2019
Publisher: words & pictures
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 32
Format: e-book
Source: NetGalley

In this cozy bedtime story, follow a child and his grandma through a winter landscape to explore how the Earth goes to sleep for winter. Spot the sleeping animals as the tale unfolds, then learn about their hibernation habits from the information pages at the end.

Co-authors Sean Taylor (picture book author) and Alex Morss (ecologist, journalist, and educator) offer a gentle introduction to the concept of hibernation. In the frosty, quiet forest, the snow blankets the ground and the trees have shed their leaves. Where have all the animals gone? Are they asleep too?

In each cutaway scene, see what the child cannot—that underground below his feet are dens with sleeping creatures, and within the hollow trunks of trees, animals are nesting. After the story, annotated illustrations explain the hibernation facts for each animal and what they will do when they wake up for spring.

Cozy up as you expand you and your child's knowledge of the natural world.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This book didn't really impress me. It might be fine for kids who are really interested in the subject of hibernation. While the non-fiction parts of the book are interesting enough, the story is kind of sparse.

This book is kind of a fiction/non-fiction hybrid. The first part is a story about a kid and their grandmother going into the woods and talking about hibernating animals, while the second part is more like a textbook with information about the hibernation habits of different creatures. I liked the first part better, even though it didn't have as much information. The second part just seemed like a bit of a slog to me. I wish that more of that factual information had been included in the story, rather than as a separate section at the back.

There are a number of typos and errors in the text (the dialogue paragraphs aren't punctuated correctly, for example) and the narrative overall is kind of dry. The illustrations are probably the strongest part of this book.

Overall, I didn't love this. However, if the technical errors are dealt with, this could be a good book to teach kids about the subject of hibernation.

Thank you to NetGalley and words & pictures for providing a digital ARC.

Premise: 3/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 2/5
Illustrations: 3/5
Originality: 3/5

Enjoyment: 2/5

Overall: 2.5 out of 5

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