Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

My brother Loved snowflakes: The Story of Wilson A. Bentley, the Snowflake Man

My brother Loved snowflakes: The Story of Wilson A. Bentley, the Snowflake Man

Mary Bahr Fritts
Illustrator:  Laura Jacobsen 
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Boyds Mills Press, 2002   ISBN: 978-1563976896

Charlie and Willie Bentley live with their parents on a farm in Vermont. The boys are educated at home and their mother, who is delighted by Willie’s abilities gets her son a microscope. Willie loves the microscope spending a good part of his spare time looking at all kinds of things under the lens. More than anything Willie looks at drops of water, marveling at what he sees. When it begins to snow in the winter time Willie looks at a snowflake under the lens and what he sees changes Willie’s life.

Willie is entrances by the beautiful snowflakes and he was to capture their likeness on paper. Unfortunately his subjects refuse to accommodate him; they keep melting. Eventually Willie finds a solution to the problem. He buys a microscope which works with a camera and after many hours of trying, Willie finds a way to get the images that he is looking for.

Many people wonder why Willie persists in taking pictures of snowflakes, writing a book about them, and showing his photographs to people but Charlie just delights in his brother’s creativity, his determination, his appreciation of the natural world, and his kindness.

Told from the point of view of Willie’s brother, this is an excellent account of Wilson A. Bentley’s extraordinary life. Richly colored artwork in vivid reds, oranges and other warm colors perfectly compliment the text.