peter and the winter sleepers

Peter and the Winter Sleepers by Rick De Haas

This snowy book is the story of Peter, who lives with his grandmother and pet dog in a lighthouse.  One day, it snowed, a wonderful clean fluffy snow that was perfect for making snowmen.  But then it just didn’t stop snowing.  They moved the chicken and goat inside to be safe, and then there was a scratching at the front door.  It was a rabbit.  Peter made a bed on the stairs for the rabbit when there came another noise at the door.  It brought more animals: squirrels, mice, hedgehogs, birds, a bat.  It got hard to sleep at night and the droppings were smelly.  After a few more days, the came another knock on the door.  It was a fox.  At first, Peter was eager to welcome a new animal to the lighthouse.  But how in the world was a fox going to live with the animals that it usually eats?

De Haas has created a friendly, cozy world here.   There is a gentle feel to the entire book, a hominess.  Anyone who has been stuck at home during a blizzard will recognize the feeling, and will probably start to wish that the animals would knock at their door next time.  The text of the book has a gentle quality as well, a quiet building as animals enter the lighthouse.

The lighthouse is filled with curved lines from the arched doorways to the curve of the stair to the gentle arc of the walls.  Complementing the curves is the warm yellow tones of the interior, that contrasts well with the cool blues of the snowy landscape outside.  This is a haven that is deliciously warm and welcoming.

A great pick for wintry story times, this book is quiet, gentle and welcoming just like its storyline.  Appropriate for ages 4-6.

Reviewed from copy received from NorthSouth.