Wintry & Wonderful Picture Books

A simple illustration of a snowy hill with a bare tree, at the bottom a child and parent walk

by Eliana H.

I hope you have enjoyed our recent snow days and have stayed safe and warm. If there wasn’t enough snow for you, perhaps these titles will fill the gap. If you’d rather stay away from winter weather, curling up inside with a book is a great option for staying warm. Enjoy a sampling of some wintry and wonderful picture books to share with your family this season. If you’re looking for more options or hoping to find some cozy titles for more mature audiences, visit or call any of our branches and speak to a staff member. We will be happy to help you find the right title for you! 

Making a Friend by Tammi Sauer, illustrated by Alison Friend (ages 3-6) 

Despite his best efforts, Beaver has a hard time making friends. When the snow falls, it presents him with an opportunity to make a different kind of friend. Will Beaver be able to keep his friend when the snow melts? Use this story as a conversation starter with little ones about how to interact with peers and build friendships. 

Owl Moon by Jane Yolen, illustrated by John Schoenherr (ages 2-7) 

“When you go owling, you don’t need words.” In this strikingly illustrated, Caldecott-winning classic tale, a little girl goes out into a quiet, snowy night with her father to search for owls. The poetic story shows the bond between parent and child, and the special experiences that can strengthen it. It also demonstrates a connection to nature that deserves to be maintained.  

Rabbit’s Snow Dance by James & Joseph Bruchac, illustrated by Jeff Newman (ages 3-7) 

Expert storytelling father and son team James and Joseph Bruchac composed this retelling of a traditional Iroquois story, where readers meet a rabbit who looks different than what we are used to today. Young readers may be able to relate to Rabbit’s impatience, as he chants “I want it, I want it, I want it right now!” Although Rabbit gets what he wants, regardless of the needs of the other animals, the consequences help him learn to be more patient, and perhaps some readers will take the lesson to heart as well.  

Snow Much Fun!  by Nancy Siscoe, illustrated by Sabina Gibson (ages 4-7) 

Three friends are excited to enjoy a snow day! They each enjoy different activities, but they are willing to try something outside their comfort zone for their friends. The friends support each other in any struggles, and they find new joys as they explore. Photos of intricate textile and paper creations bring a whimsical, unique feel to this simple, rhyming tale. 

Thankful by Elaine Vickers, illustrated by Samantha Cotterill (ages 4-8) 

What are YOU thankful for? In this endearing book, a young child shares her family’s practice of making paper chains out of things they are thankful for. The narrator shares many things she is thankful for, throughout the year and in all different situations. As you enjoy the fun, detailed pictures of paper creations in the book, perhaps your family will be inspired to talk about where you find gratitude.  

You’re Snug with Me by Chitra Soundar, illustrated by Poonam Mistry (ages 4-7) 

This book pairs ornately patterned illustrations with a mother polar bear’s reassurances to her two new cubs as they are born and begin to learn about the world around them. In the text, the author uses the mama bear to teach readers about the beauty and wonder of our polar lands. When her new cubs worry, she assures them each time, “You’re snug with me,” all the while gently encouraging readers to be good stewards of the earth. 

In shades of gold, blue and grey, snowflakes and bears composed of complicated patterns frame the title.

Eliana is a Children’s Research Specialist and Instructor at HCLS Elkridge Branch. She loves reading, even if she’s slow at it, and especially enjoys helping people find books that make them light up. She also loves being outside and spending time with friends and family (when it’s safe).

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