________________ CM . . . . Volume XXII Number 17. . . .January 8, 2016


Cold As Ice. (Whatever After #6).

Sarah Mlynowski.
New York, NY: Scholastic (Distributed in Canada by Scholastic Canada), 2014/2015.
163 pp., pbk., $6.99.
ISBN 978-0-545-62736-8.

Subject Headings:

Grades 3-6 / Ages 8-11.

Review by Ruth McMahon.

*** /4



Going through the mirror never hurts. It feels like you are walking through an open door.

This time, I land on something soft. And cold. It still doesn’t hurt. It’s just… cold.

Really cold.

Freezing, in fact.

I open my eyes and all is see is white. What is happening? Am I in a cloud? Are we in the story of Aladdin? Am I on a magic carpet?

I try to push myself up, but my hands sink lower.

I think I’m in snow.

I spit out what tastes like ice. Yes! It’s snow. I roll over so I am finally looking up. There is blue sky everywhere. And I am definitely in a pile of snow. Snow! Beautiful, crisp, white snow! How I’ve missed you!

Wait. What fairy tale takes place in the snow? Let’s see. Well, the little Match girl takes place in the winter...


Oh! My! Goodness!

Snow! So much snow!

We’re in Frozen! We’re in my favourite movie!


Cold as Ice is the sixth book in the “Whatever After” series by Sarah Mlynowski. This is the third title I have reviewed in this series, and so I am becoming quite familiar with the premise and the main characters. As usual, siblings Abby and Jonah embark on a midnight adventure through the mirror in their family’s basement. This time, their dog Prince leads them astray by escaping to the basement and leaping into the mirror. In this installment, the siblings have been told by their parents that they are to have no more midnight adventures, but their dog has gone through the mirror, and, of course, they must follow.

     In spite of what one learns from reading the excerpt, the story they have landed in is not the Disney movie Frozen, but its literary equivalent, The Snow Queen. The siblings find themselves engrossed in the trail of misery left by the Snow Queen as they try and rescue their beloved canine. This leads them on an adventure that includes a talking reindeer and an unusual band of thieves. Once again, Abby’s knowledge of the original tale helps the duo make it to the necessary portal in time to crawl into bed before their parents are awake. Unfortunately, their parents are aware the siblings have been in the basement against the parents’ wishes. It appears future adventures are in jeopardy, but, Maryrose, the fairy who lives in the mirror, erases the parents’ memories which sets readers up for the next escapade.

     I felt the characters were better developed in this adventure, but this may be due to the fact this is my third adventure with Abby and Jonah. The twists and turns in this plot follow the extraordinary plot line of the Andersen tale more so than the plots of previous adventures followed the plot line of their original tales. In other words, I thought this was a stronger offering and have given it a higher rating.

     As noted before, the titles in this series are great for developing readers looking to hone their skills. Like the earlier books, Cold as Ice is probably of most interest to young female readers.


Ruth McMahon, a professional librarian working in a middle school library in Alberta, has two teenaged daughters.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.

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