Diamond in the Snow by Jonathan Emmett
|Diamond in the Snow by Jonathan Emmett
|Category: For Sharing
|Reviewer: Sue Magee
|Summary: Mole thinks that he's found a diamond only to find that it melts away in his hands. A fun story with a neat twist on 'all that glistens is not gold' that will be loved by both boys and girls.
|Date: December 2007
|Publisher: Walker Books Ltd
Mole burrowed out of the ground one cold winter's afternoon and was most surprised to see a blanket of snow.
Cold-diggerty! gasped Mole,
Mole had never seen snow before and it made the woodland look strange and beautiful. He set off to explore. Have you ever noticed how quiet everything seems when there's a fresh fall of snow? Mole did. It was if everything had fallen under a magic spell. Enchanted, he wandered on, until suddenly he slid down a snowy bank.
Ooh! cried Mole as his paws slid from under him
Wheee! he shouted as he sped down the slope.
That last groan happened when he crashed into a tree trunk. As he sat up he saw something bright and shiny in the snow in front of him. Sure that it was a diamond he struggled home with it, only to find it becoming slippy in his hands, changing shape and finally disappearing altogether.
Oh, this is a lovely story. Mole's young and he's innocent and there's a joyful enthusiasm about him. He loves the freshness of the snow and even sees the fun in sliding down the snowy bank - until he hits the tree, that is. His excitement about the 'diamond' is engaging and his sorrow when it melts in his hands makes you want to hug him. It's his friends Hedgehog, Squirrel and Rabbit who cheer him up and despite the fact that they obviously don't believe the story of the 'diamond' they go with mole to see where he found it.
Now we'll pass lightly over whether or not Hedgehog would be out and about at this time of year - or out in daylight at any time of year - and look instead at the picture of friendship between the four youngsters. They might throw snowballs at each other but they're there for Mole when he's upset and go with him and gently explain that it was an icicle he tried to bring home. It's a small twist on the 'all that glistens is not gold' theme, but Mole is rewarded by the sight of the sun setting through the winter trees and the four friends all agree that it was magic.
The language in this book doesn't patronise the young reader, but looks to extend the vocabulary in as easy way. It's a wonderful book for a parent to read - in fact I found it just about impossible not to play all the parts - but it's also good as an early reader. The font is clear and accessible, but their main help will come from the wonderful illustrations.
Vanessa Cabban has used a muted palette of colours which perfectly capture the winter landscape and even manages to picture Hedgehog standing on his hind legs without making him look completely ridiculous. It's a fun book with a lovely story which any child in the five-to-seven age group is likely to love. Presentation is all you would expect from Walker Books - just stroke the front of the book (go on - no one will laugh) and you will get the sensation of running your hand over ice.
I'd like to thank the publishers for sending this book to The Bookbag.
For another book which looks at the value of friendship in a winter setting you might like Little Rabbit's Christmas by Harry Horse.
You can read more book reviews or buy Diamond in the Snow by Jonathan Emmett at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy Diamond in the Snow by Jonathan Emmett at Amazon.com.
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