Friday, December 19, 2014

Sneezy the Snowman

My son came home with a couple books this year following his annual school Christmas party. I feel fairly confident they aren't formally calling it a "Christmas Party" these days, it's probably the "Winter" or "Holiday" party, but it's the Christmas Party. Maybe next year I'll send Yule Logs (Swiss Rolls) to keep it inclusive.  Anyway, one of the books he came home with was Sneezy the Snowman by Maureen Wright.
It has cute illustrations and a nice message about trying again when met with catastrophe after a fun afternoon's work. Stories about being solution oriented thinkers are generally good, but the whole "if you're uncomfortable, just eat ridiculous amounts of ice cream" message probably isn't particularly healthy, and I say this from two feet in the fat acceptance no-body-shaming camp. Really, that much ice cream is not the solution. A different jacket might have been.
Also, when reading it aloud, it feels like a book that teeters at the edge of needing a rhythm and rhyme scheme, yet doesn't achieve one. For this, I can't rate it well. My son received it as a gift. He likes it because
I want to like this story because the notion of a sentient puddle asking to be rebuilt puts me in mind of the 2013 Doctor Who Christmas Special, and I do like children's stories that edge up on the creepy, but alas, the ice cream thing just kills it for me.
the snowman sneezes and is cold. It's a funny notion. I suppose from an inclusive standpoint, it gives kids an opportunity to think about people who struggle to get by in the environment into which they were born, for instance, people with grass and pollen allergies. Let's face it, a snow man should be able to handle the weather that matches his natural body temperature.

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