Saturday, October 01, 2016

The Abdominal Snow Man! Annabelle and the South Pole by R. W. Alley

Winter has settled over the little Yankee seacoast town, and Annabelle with her book about polar regions is sweetly settled in the cozy window seat looking out at a ginormous snowman. Mitchell, Clark, and Gretchen, however, seems to be coming down with a serious case of cabin fever.

"Behold! I am the Wizard!" said Mitchell.

"Look! A scheming sorceress in her tower." said Clark.

"Save my roly-polys from her evil spells!" said Gretchen.

Annabelle stormed out!

She flees the Wizard, denying everything, heading out the front door into the snowscape where four cute penguins await her. But what is that rotund and horrifying sight approaching in the swirling snow?

The Abominable Snow Giant!

The big-bellied snow bully charges. Annabelle rallies, landing a well-placed snowball, knocking his nose askew, and sending his surprised head flying! Oops!

Annabelle and her penguins replace his snowy head, still somewhat awry, and in gratitude the tubby snow giant gives Annabelle a ride on his wide shoulders straight to the South Pole.

But what's this?

The claim to the Pole has already be staked out by the Mitchell and his minions. The Wizard of the World has also magicked up his cauldron of chocolate-flavored potion to ward off attacks.

"Too hot!" said the Snow Giant.

Fearing melting, the Snow Giant flees. But the unabashed Annabelle is unafraid. She snatches the potion and downs it in one long, chocolatey swallow.

So it's back to base camp for the whole lot of intrepid polar explorers, where their sturdy sled pooch naps on the sleigh with Gretchen while the rest down proper mugs of hot cocoa from their porch, and wonder how their snowman's head got upside down while they were away!

R. W. Alley finishes up the finale for his seasonal series in his forthcoming Annabelle at the South Pole (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016) with a polar quest, a snowball fight, and more fun in the snow with his four inventive and resourceful siblings whose imaginations create their own settings--spring, summer, fall, or winter. Charming illustrations with full-bleed, double-page spreads distinguish all the books in this series, whose characters can conjure up their own fun whatever the weather. Other books about the fantasy-loving four include Clark in the Deep Sea, Gretchen Over the Beach, and Mitchell on the Moon (Read my reviews of R.W. Alley's work here.)

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