Book Review: Eli’s 1st Winter Carnival By: Lisa Bowen

Eli's 1st Winter Carnival Review | Aprel's Thoughts and Reviews

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for this review post. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this post are my own and not influenced by the product company and/or its affiliates in any way.

There’s a certain degree of magic in the air when winter arrives. The outside world becomes covered in a blanket of snow while inside we curl up underneath a blanket of our own. There are sights and sounds of the holidays all around us as we prepare to celebrate with family and friends. Kids rush outside, under several layers of clothing, to build a snowman, go sledding and have playful snowball fights with friends. 

For little Eli, these things are the very best parts of winter. He absolutely loves this time of year and he often plays outside with Isaiah, his older brother. Young Eli will soon have an exciting event to look forward to this year. He will be going to the neighborhood winter carnival with his family for the very first time! He can barely contain his excitement as his family sets off through the woods on their way to the winter carnival. 

The Book

Eli's 1st Winter Carnival Book Cover | Aprel's Thoughts and Reviews

Eli’s 1st Winter Carnival is a colorful picture book story that follows the young boy along on a journey to his first ever winter carnival. The story length is long enough to share every aspect of Eli’s journey yet still be an easy read as a bedtime story. It is ideal for younger children and they will likely identify with the activities featured in the book such as sledding, ice hockey and building a snowman. You may find an older sibling listening in as the story is read out loud or laughing quietly at the funny parts. They just might not show you their interest in the book! 

As you read through the book, you will meet other characters, such as Eli’s older brother Isaiah and his parents. Upon arriving at the winter carnival you will meet some of his friends like Malakai and Ben. Although Eli is the central focal point of the book, this cast of characters help bring his journey to life and share in his excitement over this winter event. They each play a part in making his day as memorable as possible. 

The Story

Eli's 1st Winter Carnival Interior Page | Aprel's Thoughts and Reviews

Author Lisa Bowen does a fantastic job at telling the story through the eyes of a child. She writes responses to story aspects, such as building a snowman, in the exact way you would expect a child to react. You can feel how nervous little Eli is as he patiently waits for the judges to reach a decision in the family snowman building contest. She continues with this emotional appeal as Eli comes in from the snow and cold outside environment to find a warm dinner waiting for him. 

Nina Vanessa Pontillas serves as the illustrator on this book. Her talent and love of drawing is evident on every page of this book. She does a great job capturing Eli’s facial expressions as he takes in the sights and sounds of this exciting day. Her illustrations help you feel as if you are part of the story. 

My Final Thoughts

Eli's 1st Winter Carnival Pancakes | Aprel's Thoughts and Reviews

My favorite part of this book is when Eli discovers that he’s having pancakes for dinner! That’s a combination of two of my favorite things – breakfast for dinner and blueberry pancakes. Who wouldn’t be excited about that? Overall it’s a heartwarming story of a young child’s first experience with something that he’s sure to love. As a parent myself, that storyline is easily relatable and I clearly pictured my daughter’s excitement over seeing snow for the first time as I read the story. 

I highly recommend this book for anyone with a young child who can relate to trying something new for the first time. They will surely find Eli’s courage endearing! Eli’s 1st Winter Carnival will make a great holiday gift for someone on your shopping list this year. You can find it here: Amazon