A magical story, but one that does not shy away from life's cruel disappointments and the brutal facts of living in a harsh environment. The vivid writing made me feel that I shared the settlers' lives, the hardships that make the 1920s seem like the 1820s, but also the bittersweet magic that the Snow Child brought them. And at the end I felt the powerful connections that make a family.
Everything was sparkled and sharp as if the world were new, hatched that very morning from an icy egg. Willow branches were cloaked in hoar frost, waterfalls encased in ice, and the snowy land speckled with the tracks of a hundred wild animals: red-backed voles, coyotes and fox, fat-footed lynx, moose and dancing magpies.
Then they came to a frightening place, a stand of tall spruce where the air was dead and the shadows cold. A bird wing was nailed to the trunk of a broad tree, a patch of white rabbit fur to another, and they were like a witch's totems where dead animals ensnare passing spirits.