Monday, July 1, 2024

The Ice Children by M. G. Leonard, illustrated by Penny Neville-Lee



Bianca and her younger brother Finn argue over a glittery book that Finn has taken from the library. Then five year old Finn is found frozen in a local park. Gradually more and more children turn up frozen in the park.

Bianca realises it is to do with the strange book which it turns our never was in the library catalogue.  Each frozen child has a copy of the book.  She finds the factory where the books are made and meets the strange team of twins Pitter and Patter, Jack (Frost) and Quilo who disguise themselves as one grown-up man.  

Bianca manages to obtain a copy of the book; she too is frozen and is taken to the land of Winterton. Here she meets the Snow Queen who had taken a liking to her brother. Yes, here are echoes of the Hans Christian Anderesen story and also of the Narnia chronicles. And just as in Andresen’s story, the ice children have a shard in their hearts.

Winterton is a magical place with fairground rides, hot chocolate fountains and marshmallows that grow on trees.    

The Snow Queen is dying because of climate change.  Winter is disappearing. And if something doesn’t happen to reverse the warming of the planet all of the children with the splinters in their hearts will die at the time of the winter solstice. They will know nothing of it but will continue to live happily in Winterton.

Bianca finds another way and shows the grown-ups what they must do. The children are unfrozen and returned to their families, all determined to fight climate change and save winter and the Snow Queen

There are some monochrome pencil illustrations throughout.

There is a little information about both the author and the illustrator at the end of the book.  

The text is quite dense, blocked and in a serif font with difficult ‘a’s and ‘g’s.  It is double-spaced. 

Find your copy here  

Note, this is an affiliate link and a small portion of what you pay, at no extra cost to you,  may go to Bridge House Publishing. 


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