This is a beautifully written book. The Snow Child is inspired by the Russian folktale in which a childless elderly couple make a snowchild that comes to life as a young girl. Ivey's use of the folktale is multilayered and inventive, and works very well in the book's setting of Alaska in the 1920s.
I cared about the characters, but I especially loved the depictions of the Alaskan wilderness throughout the seasons. The novel also pays homage to freedom and individuality, while at the same time celebrating the bonds of friendship, love and trust that tie together friends and family. One theme that resonates with me is the importance of being a part of something larger than oneself - a family, a farm, a close friendship, nature.