Is anyone else wishing for snow? The magical, fluffy, white stuff feels like the perfect symbol of new beginnings and hopes as we welcome this particular new year with open arms.
Even if there’s no sparkly snow outside the window just now, your youngsters are sure to enjoy a beautiful winter-themed picture book. Dog on Wheels goes Snowboarding (Troika, 2020), by award-winning author-illustrator Gillian McClure, is a new favourite of mine. It’s the third book to star the adorably exuberant skateboarding Dubbin and his little friend Todd, joining Dog on Wheels (2017) and Dog on Wheels at Sunny Sea (2018).
Gillian McClure’s lyrical texts and the playfulness of her words on the page make the Dog on Wheels books a joy to read out loud. Little ones love the excitement and energy of the stories about Dubbin and Todd having fun with the adaptable skateboard. But there’s mild peril too, and there’s someone else to spot in the background. The lurking shaggy dog is a neat device for sparking a conversation about strangers. Is this sly outsider actually a potential friend? I do hope Gillian McClure helps us get to know the shaggy dog in a future Dog on Wheels book.
If wishes were snowflakes we’d all be playing in a blanket of fluffy snow in these first days of 2021. I wish you all health, happiness and many, many hugs in the coming year.