Sixteen Miles to Spring
Illustrated by Katya Krenina
Ages 6 to 9
Albert Whitman (USA), 2002, 0-8015-7388-4
Maddy wakes up one morning and she cannot help feeling that something is different. It is as if a voice on the wind is saying “Here it comes!” but Maddy isn’t yet sure what all these strange things mean. The countryside outside is bleak, gray, and dead looking and spring seems to be many weeks away.
Then Maddy goes into town with her father and as they drive she notices that changes are taking place. The brook is no longer frozen and there isn’t as much snow on the ground. Maddy and her father then meet two very peculiar and amusing men who have come from the south. On their truck the words “Sixteen Miles to Spring” are painted. Maddy cannot help wondering what the words mean. Bit by bit the two men explain and then they show Maddy that they are two very special people indeed, people who seem to be able to bring about a wonderful kind of magic.
This book about the coming of spring beautifully captures the element of magic that is in the air as the snow melts, as the flowers bloom, and as the trees uncurl their new leaves. At the beginning of the book the author explains why we have a spring and what we all can go to see it coming.
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