Book #187: Here Comes Jack Frost

Here Comes Jack Frost -- coverI like this book a lot, but it’s kind of weird, too, right? Jack Frost, the personification of winter, has something of a questionable reputation in folklore. He’s mischievous and good-spirited, but he can also be a trickster, even villainous. In Kazuno Kohara’s rendering, Jack Frost is a spry little sharp-edged guy who can leap to great heights and provide entertainment for a little boy.

At first Jack Frost tells the boy that he can’t be caught. “You can’t catch me!” he cries, jumping over the pond. But the boy has ice skates and catches up to him.  “You can’t catch me!” Jack Frost insists, jumping over a hill. But the boy has a sled, so he catches up. At this point Jack Frost gives up trying to get away, so after an agreement to never mention the spring (it would break the spell of winter) the two play together, building snowmen and chucking snowballs at each other (I think these illustrations are a little harsh). It’s inevitable that at the first sight of a snowdrop, the boy says something about spring, and Jack Frost disappears. The boy looks sad, but I’d like to think he was inadvertently trying to get rid of Jack Frost in the first place.  Jack Frost is creepy looking if you ask me. And not all that nice, either.

Perhaps I sound bitter because I am so entirely sick of winter. Perhaps those of us living far away — in Mexico, say — cannot   imagine cabin fever, the back-breaking pain of shoveling yet another heavy wet snow, or getting one’s minivan caught in a snowbank for the third time in one day. Show me a Jack Frost around these parts and you’ll hear a middle-aged woman screaming spring louder than any banshee.

That’s just me, though.  Ray is blissfully unaware of our never-ending winter.  And he liked the book, too.  ABZ

Here Comes Jack Frost -- inside

Here Comes Jack Frost -- sledge

 

Here Comes Jack Frost -- spell

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