The December 2012 adult book club discussion book was The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey. The author was inspired to write it, her first novel, by the Russian folk tale about a maiden made of snow who comes to life. Jack and Mabel are recent arrivals to 1920 Alaska, a brutal place to homestead. They are childless and drifting apart, but in a moment of levity during a snowfall they build a child out of snow. The next morning the snow child is gone – replaced by Faina, a living child of the woods.
I really enjoyed the first part of the novel. The descriptions of the people and the landscape were very good, and the secrets of the mysterious child kept me intrigued. I wanted to keep reading to find out what was going to happen next. I felt the plot went a bit flat with the entry of a romance toward the end of the book, and I found the ending somewhat unsatisfying. Still, if you are interested in Alaska and the charm of a novel based on a folk tale, it is well worth reading.
Members of the book clubs very much enjoyed the book, and we had two great discussions about The Snow Child.