Out on the Ice in the Middle of the Bay


32 pages
ISBN 1-55037-277-7
DDC jC813'.54





Illustrations by Alice Priestley
Reviewed by Kelly L. Green

Kelly L. Green is co-author of The Ethical Shopper’s Guide to Canadian
Supermarket Products and associate editor of the Canadian Book Review


Out on the ice in the middle of the bay, an iceberg stands like a
magical island of snow. Little Leah, who leaves her home while her
father sleeps, and Baby Nanook, the polar-bear cub, are both drawn to
explore the iceberg. When they discover each other, they are curious and
unafraid. Little Leah’s father and Baby Nanook’s mother have very
different reactions when they run into each other as they search for
their children. What happens next is surprising and comforting.

Peter Cumming has written a thoughtful and appealing book, in language
both simple and eloquent. It not only tells an exciting tale of life in
the Far North, but imparts some important insights into the nature of
the bond between parent and child, both animal and human, and gives us a
glimpse of our true place in nature. Alice Priestley’s illustrations
are beautifully in sync with the tone and spirit of the story. She is
especially good at catching just the expression one knows one would see
on the face of a person caught in a particular situation. She even gets
the animals right. Highly recommended.


Cumming, Peter., “Out on the Ice in the Middle of the Bay,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 17, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/31381.