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Most children are captivated by snow, but how many go on to make it their lifework? This beautiful biography, winner of the 1999 Caldecott Medal, tells the true story of a Vermont farm boy who was mesmerized by snowflakes. Wilson Bentley was fascinated by the six-sided frozen phenomena, and once he acquired a microscope with a camera, his childhood preoccupation took on a more scientific leaning. Bentley spent his life taking countless exquisite photographs (many that are still used in nature photography today), examining the tiny crystals and their delicate, mathematical structures. Jacqueline Briggs Martin tells this tale with simple, graceful prose that will engage children's imaginations. Edifying and snowflake-scattered sidebars offer more information about Bentley's methods and snowflake science. The artwork of Mary Azarian, whose 19th-century hand-press illustrations decorate the charming Barn Cat, shines once again in Snowflake Bentley, with woodcuts that reveal an appreciation for detail as well as for the man who loved snow. The lovely illustrations and equally fresh text will inspire and comfort youngsters (and grownups too) who wish they could capture snowflakes all year long. (Ages 4 to 8) --Brangien Davis --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Azarian's (A Farmer's Alphabet) handsome woodcuts provide a homespun backdrop to Martin's (Grandmother Bryant's Pocket) brief biography of a farmboy born in 1865 on the Vermont snowbelt who never lost his fascination with snowflakes. Wilson A. Bentley spent 50 years pioneering the scientific study of ice crystals, and developed a technique of microphotography that allowed him to capture the hexagonal shapes and prove that no two snowflakes are alike. Martin conveys Bentley's passion in lyrical language ("snow was as beautiful as butterflies, or apple blossoms"), and punctuates her text with frequent sidebars packed with intriguing tidbits of information (though readers may be confused by the two that explain Bentley's solution of how to photograph the snowflakes). Hand-tinted with watercolors and firmly anchored in the rural 19th century, Azarian's woodcuts evoke an era of sleighs and woodstoves, front porches and barn doors, and their bold black lines provide visual contrast to the delicate snowflakes that float airily in the sidebars. A trio of Bentley's ground-breaking black-and-white photographs of snowflakes, along with a picture and quote from him about his love for his work, is the icing that tops off this attractive volume. Ages 4-8.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
...I chose Snowflake Bentley for my Caldecott Presentation in Childrens Literature. This book gives children a rich history lesson in a personal and meaningful way. Read morePublished on July 1 2003 by Julie Johnson
The inspiring true story of photographer and self-made scientist Wilson "Snowflake" Bentley proves that anyone can achieve their dream. Read morePublished on Dec 27 2002 by Lynda Preston
I cannot fathom how this book won the Caledecott award. It is excruciatingly boring. Yes, it's very informative, but there is absolutely nothing fun or fanciful about it. Read morePublished on June 2 2002
This is the true story of Wilson "Snowflake" Bentley. He devoted his life to the study of and photography of snowflakes. Read morePublished on May 22 2002 by Jay
I really enjoyed reading the story of Snowflake Bentley. Jacqueline Briggs Martin does an excellent job of telling the accomplishments of Willian Bentley in a way that is exciting... Read morePublished on Jan. 27 2002
This book made my very active 5 year old put down his new Bionicle leggos and sit with me to look and listen. Read morePublished on Dec 27 2001
Snowflake Bentley is a true story about William Bentley and his love for nature. William particularly loved snowflakes and photographing them. Read morePublished on Nov. 30 2001 by Brooke L.
Snow in Vermot is as common as dirt. Why would anyone want to photograph it? But from the time he was a little boy, Wilson Bentley thinks of the icy crystals as small miracles, and... Read morePublished on Dec 21 2000