A Very Special Snowflake by Don Hoffman

June 20th was officially the first day of summer. Today we are scheduled to be up in the 90's in our neck of the woods. As warm as that is, with the long winter months up here in NY, I like to cherish even the hottest of days. Being outside to enjoy the fresh air and sun (don't forget the sunscreen, though) is always nice, so I'd like to keep cold temperatures and snow as far out of my mind as possible. Of course since we do have an immense love for books in our home, we still welcome in a few winter stories like A Very Special Snowflake, even in the midst of summer.

On a snowy winter day, Jeff and Veronica take their new puppy out for a game of catch. But Snowflake soon disappears! Her white fur blends right into a mound of snow. The neighbors try to help while Snowflake plays a game of hide-and-seek with the reader!

Don Hoffman is an Emmy Award-winning children’s book author and a Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) fellow whose work has been delighting both children and adults for years. His published stories reach back to 1999, with successful titles for leading publishers Scholastic, Charlesbridge/Imagine, Dalmatian Press, and Popcorn Press.

A brother and sister, Jeff and Veronica, just got a new puppy and they can't wait to take him outside for some fun in the snow. That fun soon turns into a search party when their puppy who's all white and appropriately named Snowflake, gets lost in the huge winter mess. He's nowhere to be found, so the brother and sister seek assistance from the local townspeople. When they ask each person for help in finding Snowflake, he/she has no idea that Jeff and Veronica are actually talking about a puppy, but instead think they're commenting on the blustery snow that is falling–AKA snowflakes.

The artwork throughout the story is full of color and cheerful drawings. One of my favorite features of this children's book is the search and find aspect. You see, on each page Snowflake is hiding somewhere in the illustrations. While Jeff and Veronica are desperately searching for their little pup, my son was eager to point out exactly where Snowflake was hiding as we flipped through each page.

I'm pretty sure most of you are in summer mode–I know we sure are. Later on when the winter months make their grand entry, many of us will be looking for tales to enjoy the holiday season and snowy weather. A Very Special Snowflake is a fun little read for the kiddos during that time. Come to think about it–the book is just as fun any time of the year. Reading it in the summer just makes us appreciate the warmer months even more.