Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Friday, April 2, 2021

Sisters, Sisters...

There were never such devoted sisters!

My granddaughters are the cutest.

We love singing them the "Sisters Song" from White Christmas - especially in light of the fact that Maria (the youngest of my daughter's four children) was born in December - on Christmas Eve!

My husband recently found a long lost box high up on a shelf in our garage.  It was full of some of our kids' favorite childhood picture books!  I separated them out according to each (now adult) child so they can pass them along to their own kiddos.

When I came to the pile of my daughter's books I smiled as I thought of her little girls enjoying their mommy's old books...because they already love books!

Today I'd like to highlight a story about two sisters, Snow White and Rose Red, heroines of one of Grimm's fairytales. I remember it being a favorite of my childhood fairytales.  Growing up, we had a recorded version with a follow-along Little Golden book.

There was once a poor widow who lived in a lonely cottage. In front of the cottage was a garden wherein stood two rose-trees, one of which bore white and the other red roses. She had two children who were like the two rose-trees, and one was called Snow-white, and the other Rose-red... 

I loved Gustav Tenggren's illustrations of the blonde and brunette sisters, as different in their personalities as their red and white rose bushes - and I could never decide which girl I'd rather be. The story also features a bear, and an ungrateful dwarf (who always reminded me of Rumplestiltskin).

This beautiful version, Snow & Rose written and illustrated by Emily Winfield Martin, was gifted to me by my daughter! It's a nice chapter book version for kids 8-12, with beautiful illustrations throughout.

From Publisher's Weekly:

Sisters Snow and Rose once lived a charmed life in a grand house with a beautiful garden. After their father disappears into the woods, the girls and their mother are forced to move into a small cottage in the same forest. There, they befriend a boy named Ivo, discover a mysterious library filled not with books but objects, are tricked by a strange little man, and bond with a protective bear. 

Unfolding over episodic chapters that build to a well-deserved happy ending, this moody fairy tale emphasizes family, friendship, and the powerful bond of sisterhood. Martin’s characterization of the two contrary sisters is especially moving: Rose is the type of person who “holds on to a thing she loved as tightly as she could,” while Snow wants “to see or hear or taste something she loved over and over again, to remind herself that it was real.” 

The sisters’ contradictions make their relationship all the stronger, and Martin’s prim full-color paintings and spot illustrations tenderly highlight key characters and moments. Ages 8–12.

Incidentally, when Maria was born, I gifted her with one of Emily Winfield Martin's picture books, The Wonderful Things You Will Be.

And this past Christmas, we gave her a cute little stuffed doll of the protagonist baby (her doppelganger), who, along with sister Lexi, keeps Maria company day and night.

Oh, how I miss our little Snow (Lexi) and Rose (Maria)!  Such devoted sisters.


  1. Thank You for this beautiful post. The grandchildren are lovely and adorable. God Bless. Wishing you and your family a Blessed and HAPPY Easter.
    Joan,Marion and Marilyn

  2. Thank you, ladies. Hope you’re staying healthy! Have a blessed Easter. Our Pascha is late this year. Not until May 2nd.