The Snow Fell Three Graves Deep: Voices from the Donner Party
In powerful, vivid verse, the master behind The Watch That Ends the Night recounts one of history’s most harrowing—and chilling—tales of survival.
In 1846, a group of emigrants bound for California face a choice: continue on their planned route or take a shortcut into the wilderness. Eighty-nine of them opt for the untested trail, a decision that plunges them into danger and desperation and, finally, the unthinkable. From extraordinary poet and novelist Allan Wolf comes a riveting retelling of the ill-fated journey of the Donner party across the Sierra Nevadas during the winter of 1846–1847. Brilliantly narrated by multiple voices, including world-weary, taunting, and all-knowing Hunger itself, this novel-in-verse examines a notorious chapter in history from various perspectives, among them caravan leaders George Donner and James Reed, Donner’s scholarly wife, two Miwok Indian guides, the Reed children, a sixteen-year-old orphan, and even a pair of oxen. Comprehensive back matter includes an author’s note, select character biographies, statistics, a time line of events, and more. Unprecedented in its detail and sweep, this haunting epic raises stirring questions about moral ambiguity, hope and resilience, and hunger of all kinds.
“The Snow Fell Three Graves Deep is historical fiction at its very best.” —BookPage, Starred Review
“An impressive, albeit woeful, slice of American history that old middle grade readers will sink their teeth into.” —Shelf Awareness, Starred Review
“Though historical fiction, this book is truly slow-burn horror … Another bone-chilling, unshakable success by Wolf.” BookList, Starred Review
Meticulously researched, increasingly more compelling with every page, and stunningly imagined.” —Karen Hesse, Newbery Medal–winning author of Out of the Dust
“Magnificent, apocalyptic, tender, and meticulous, The Snow Fell Three Graves Deep traverses all that it means to be human and all that it takes to survive.” —Gigi Amateau, author of Come August, Come Freedom
“Allan Wolf has truly carved out a niche for himself in the realm of the historical novel-in-verse….” —School Library Connection
The Day the Universe Exploded in My Head
Ever wonder what the sun has to say about being the closest star to Earth? Or what Pluto has gotten up to since being demoted to a dwarf planet? Or where rocket ships go when they retire? Listen closely, because maybe, just maybe, your head will explode, too. With poetry that is equal parts accurate and entertaining — and illustrations that are positively out of this world — this book will enthrall amateur stargazers and budding astrophysicists as it reveals many of the wonders our universe holds. Space travelers in search of more information will find notes about the poems, a glossary, and a list of resources at the end.
Poems about stars, planets, moons, and other astronomical wonders, accompanied by stylish anthropomorphic illustrations...A giddy ride through our stellar neighborhood and beyond. —Kirkus Reviews (starred)
A collection of clever, whimsical poems in a variety of styles and meters. Author Wolf effectively packs facts into every line using witty rhyme schemes and amusing scenarios ... and all beg to be read out loud. Visually compelling, this will capture and hold the attention of young stargazers. —Booklist (starred)
New Poetry Collections
The Proper Way to Meet a Hedgehog and Other How-To Poems, Paul B. Janeczko, Ed. Allan has two poems in this collection, including the title poem.
Be they practical (how to mix a pancake or how to bird-watch) or fanciful (how to scare monsters or how to be a snowflake), the poems in this book boast a flair and joy that you won’t find in any instruction manual. Poets from Kwame Alexander to Pat Mora to Allan Wolf share the way to play hard, to love nature, and to be grateful. Soft, evocative illustrations will encourage readers to look at the world with an eye to its countless possibilities.
The engaging artwork nudges the poems into the foreground, giving them ample room to breathe. The collection closes with "How to Pay Attention," just two lines that are almost a sacred offering. "Close this book. / Look." Young people lucky enough to find this miraculous collection in their hands will indeed look. —Kirkus Reviews (starred)
Who can resist a good how-to? Janeczko, an astute editor of children’s poetry, capitalizes on his readers’ natural curiosity and yearning for autonomy while opening up the possibilities for what a how-to—both the question and the answer—can be...The entire book becomes a how-to, instructing readers not only in various activities but also in all the ways poetry can resonate.—PW (starred)
The Poetry of US: More than 200 poems that celebrate the people, places, and passions of the United States, J. Patrick Lewis, Ed. Allan has four poems in this collection.
Celebrate the gift of language and the vibrant culture of the United States with this collection of classic and never-before-published poetry. Poems are arranged by region, from coast to coast, and among them you'll find works by Langston Hughes, Dorothy Parker, Robert Frost, Naomi Shihab Nye, Walt Whitman, and more. From the familiar to the surprising, subjects include people, places, landmarks, monuments, nature, and celebrations. Designed for sharing, but geared to younger readers, this beautifully illustrated treasury is a must-have for the whole family.
Check out Allan's Poetry Palooza Promo:
Rave reviews for The Watch That Ends the Night, Voices from the Titanic
[A] masterpiece. Wolf leaves no emotion unplumbed, no area of research uninvestigated, and his voices are so authentic they hurt. Everyone should read it. Outstanding, insightful back matter completes this landmark work. — Booklist, Starred Review
A lyrical, monumental work of fact and imagination that reads like an oral history revved up by the drama of the event. — Kirkus, Starred Review
Several concrete poems add visual interest; the Iceberg poems gradually get shorter as the monster melts, and the melee above decks is shown through a series of four-line poems surrounded by snippets of frantic conversation that converge in the gutter. As the ship sinks, the words of shipbuilder Thomas Andrews’s poem tilt and then drop off the page. — Horn Book Magazine, Starred Review
Allan Wolf has combined meticulous research with open-hearted poetry to craft the story of the Titanic in a fresh and compelling way. A remarkable accomplishment. — Helen Frost, author of Crossing Stones and Hidden
Allan Wolf has imagined his way deep into the cold, dark waters of history and has come back carrying a couple of dozen voices that he discovered there, voices whose authenticity is not only convincing but compelling. —Ted Kooser, former U.S. Poet Laureate and winner of the Pulitzer Prize
A JUNIOR LIBRARY GUILD SELECTION