Review of A Tulip in Winter: A Story About Maud Lewis

A Tulip in Winter: A Story About Maud Lewis A Tulip in Winter: A Story About Maud Lewis
by Kathy Stinson; illus. by Lauren Soloy
Primary    Greystone Kids    40 pp.
3/23    9781771649513    $18.95

Maud Lewis (1903–1970) was a Nova Scotian folk artist who lived with rheumatoid arthritis. Despite physical and economic challenges, she never let her passion for art fade away. As a child, when her hands become too bent and stiff to play the piano, she starts painting. When her parents die and her brother sells the house, Maud finds a job as fish peddler Everett Lewis’s live-in housekeeper (and eventually marries him, though this isn’t mentioned in the book). There’s not much money for paint, but Maud makes the best of what she has, adding “touches of colour” to Everett’s “dull little house,” painting birds and butterflies on the doors and flowers on the windows. Eventually she is able to sell her beautiful paintings and gain recognition for her creations. Stinson celebrates not only Lewis’s artistic achievements but also her resilient spirit in the face of poverty and hardship. Soloy’s illustrations capture the essence of Lewis’s unique artistic style with a cheery palette that reflects the text’s upbeat tone. A touching and uplifting tribute, this book emphasizes the importance of finding beauty in the everyday and persevering through life’s challenges.

Pubissue-From the July/August 2023 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Weileen Wang
You-Ling (Weileen) Wang loves to write, read, and illustrate. She attended Vanderbilt University, where she studied child development and fell in love with children's literature. She holds a master's degree in arts in education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

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