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New & Noteworthy News!

About "Over in the Arctic, Where the Cold Winds Blow"

Wherever you are, in this brand new year, I hope you are keeping warm, maybe with a hot cup of cocoa, as my friend, Carol Malnor, suggests in her blog this week.

I was thrilled to see her article "Baby, It's Cold Outside" using my book to explain how Arctic animals stay warm in winter. In this book, illustrated in cut paper art by Jill Dubin, I write about ten different animals who live in the harsh Arctic environment.

In the back of this book, as with all my Dawn books in "Tips from the Author" I suggest kids create a "Blubber Mitten" to learn how some Arctic animals stay warm. Carol has expanded on all this in her wonderful blog, so be sure to check it out at www.carolscommoncore.com/?p=774.

Oh yes, I started this out to tell you about the hidden animals in this book. Over in the Arctic was my third "Over" book, and followed Over in the Ocean and Over in the Jungle both illustrated in vibrant clay art by Jeanette Canyon. If you have seen both of those books, you know they end with kids counting all 55 babies under the ocean and in the rainforest, all on one very colorful page.

How could this be done in the Arctic where most everything is white, and most animals are camouflaged? So I asked Jill to hide an extra animal on each page, which of course, meant a lot more research on my part (and Jill's) and wrote the following:

Over in the Arctic, where the cold winds blow
Arctic animals are living in the water and the snow.

"Name us," say the animals, from ten to one
Then go back and start over, 'cause this rhyme isn't done.

Over in the Arctic, you can "spy" with your eyes
To find more Arctic creatures--every page has a surprise.

So from then on, each 'Over" book has 20 animals,10 of them hidden. Remembering my library days when kids were always asking for "Where's Waldo?"I knew children would especially find this part of my books fun, and they tell me they do. In fact, now that's the first thing they look for. What did I get myself into?

Anyway, look for more hidden animals in the next "Over" book, to be released next month: Over on a Mountain, Somewhere in the World. But please enjoy the text and the main animals Jill has so beautifully illustrated too!

"Warm" Greetings from Florida. And if it makes you feel any better, it's even cold here today. 55 degrees!!!!

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