The North Wind and the Sun (Hardcover)

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The North Wind and the Sun By Philip C. Stead Cover Image

The North Wind and the Sun (Hardcover)


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Staff Reviews

This beautifully retold fable is a celebration of endurance and compassion and a reminder that gentleness and love (and patience) are more powerful than cruelty and hate (and haste). Stead's innovative style of illustration evokes a classic with bold lines and quiet colors, and his thoughtful tale-telling is unparalleled. A story both timeless and perfect for these times.

— Hannah

She Persisted meets Be Kind in this reinterpretation of a classic fable, whose timeless message of perseverance and hope will encourage readers to stand up for themselves.

Who will win the war of trust— 
the forceful, spiteful, cruel North Wind
or the gentle, patient, determined Sun?

This thought-provoking, gorgeous story portrays the many different definitions of strength, as told through the powerful bond of three sisters. Together they face The North Wind, a mighty wintry gale bent on destroying the sisters’ old patchwork coats with his harsh words and powerful blustering. But these gray-haired sisters stand firm, bracing against the hateful Wind and his taunts, facing his negativity with practicality, resilience, grit, and gut. Their coats will not be blown off by force. 

It isn’t until the Sun tries her own methods—generosity, warmth, and waiting—that the sisters make their own decision: it is time to remove their coats. It’s the downfall of a bully, the downfall of aggression, the downfall of the Wind. 

With beautiful collage artwork and author Philip Stead’s characteristically nuanced storytelling, this retelling of The North Wind and the Sun demonstrates the importance of persistence, the power of standing up for what you believe in, and the triumph of love over hate.

A Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year
A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection
Philip Stead is the author of the Caldecott Medal-winning book A Sick Day for Amos McGee, also named a New York Times Best Illustrated Book and a Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Book, illustrated by his wife, Erin E. Stead. Together with Erin, he also created Bear Has a Story to Tell, an E.B. White Read-Aloud Award honor book. Philip, also an artist, has written and illustrated several of his own books. He lives with Erin, their daughter, and their dog in a 100-year-old barn in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Product Details ISBN: 9780823455836
ISBN-10: 0823455831
Publisher: Neal Porter Books
Publication Date: October 24th, 2023
Pages: 48
Language: English
"There’s a heartfelt depth just under the surface that begs for multiple readings, as does the interactive formatting. . . With gentle prose that rolls from the tongue, this is also a cozy read-aloud."—The New York Times

★ "While many artists have retold this story, Stead has created something truly special. . . . Stead’s beautifully textured illustrations create a strong duality between the elements, with the North Wind’s frenetic lines in stark contrast to the Sun’s serene spirals. . . . Masterfully updated and impeccably rendered."—Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

★ "When a virtuoso abandons all the rules and creates something more, everyone sits up with attention, and children will too. Aesop on steroids in blasts of colored pencil? Now that’s a classic."School Library Journal, Starred Review
"A moving and welcome retelling, like a breath of fresh air."The Horn Book

"The folkloric tone is perfectly matched by Stead’s familiar colored-pencil and print illustrations. . . .Cozy and comforting, the book nearly begs to be a seasonal readers’ theater event."The Bulletin for the Center of Children’s Books

"Stead adds a sense of healing. . . ."—Publishers Weekly