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Free Fall

3.98 of 5 stars 3.98  ·  rating details  ·  1,300 ratings  ·  148 reviews
When he falls asleep with a book in his arms, a young boy dreams an amazing dream-about dragons, about castles, and about an unchartered, faraway land. And you can come along.
Paperback, 32 pages
Published September 18th 1991 by HarperCollins (first published September 1st 1991)
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The Arrival by Shaun TanFlotsam by David WiesnerTuesday by David WiesnerThe Snowman by Raymond BriggsGood Dog, Carl by Alexandra Day
Wordless Picture Books
30th out of 130 books — 214 voters
The Lion and the Mouse by Jerry PinkneyWhere the Wild Things Are by Maurice SendakFlotsam by David WiesnerMadeline by Ludwig BemelmansMake Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey
List for #nerdcott
32nd out of 327 books — 33 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,885)
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u1124876 UEL
What a book! Free Fall is a picture book which tells the story of a boy who falls asleep after looking at an atlas and has the most in depth, mythical dream. Without one written word this book is fantastical and quite extraordinary. Snap shots from the book include the boy meeting chess pieces to him becoming a giant but with the most intriguing background scenes including mazes, forests and an oversized library.

I think this book could be used with upper KS1 children of all abilities in particu
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L-Crystal Wlodek
This wordless picture book has won the Caldecott Honor in 1989 and is intended for children in third-fifth grade. This story is about a boy who falls asleep with an atlas in his arms. He then has a dream where his bedspread turns into an aerial view of the earth. On his journey, he plays chess on an enormous chess board complete with mortal playing pieces. This medieval welcoming party leads the boy to a castle with dragons where he continues his search for an elusive map.

This story is imaginat
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Audra Sein
Free Fall is a whimsical wordless picture book illustrated by David Wiesner.

As I delved into this book, I noticed that the perspective was constantly being shifted. In some illustrations, the boy is depicted as being the same size as the people around him. In other illustrations, he is depicted as being much larger than the people around him. This shift in perspective contributes to the dream-like quality of the picture book. There is also a theme of things not being what they first appear. On
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Andrea
The book starts off with a young boy who has fallen asleep while reading a book. As he begins to doze off the book opens up to maps. While the boy is dreaming he falls on to certain places of the map, one place resembling a chess board. Another one looked like it was a castle. As he continues his dream he has picked up a sword and a shield as to protect himself from others. While dreaming he is being pulled into different directions. He even flies on what appears to be a leaf,but it is also a sw ...more
Samantha Friedman
I really enjoyed this book. I wish I would of read it first before reading the jacket flaps to see what my imagination would of came up with. The fact that the book started out as a nine foot long painting is very cool to me. I really liked his use of blues and greens, if was very calming to me, as if I was having a good dream too.
I also found that the illustration sequence was very interesting I liked how each page had a little "clue" that related to the next place he was dreaming of. Everyon
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Bonnie
Free Fall by David Wiesner is a spectacular masterpiece of imagination, creativity, and cleverness. It is also, in fact, a book without words, a story entirely conveyed through pictures.

Wiesner starts off with a child and holds his audience as the boy travels through a realm of absurd happenings-- starting with a checkered bedspread that morphs into fields, which, in turn, converts to a real size chess game. Gradually scenery changes and escapades from sleepy dragons occur, as well as other adv
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Theresa Womack
Free Fall by David Wisner is a children's picture book. When looking at the horizontal landscaped cover your eyes are drawn to the fact that a young boy appears to by flying over an ocean on a leaf. When inspecting the back cover you notice a bordered picture of a closes book with a dragon stuck in the pages. When opening to the half title page and the title page you see a map. This makes the reader start to think that this story might be about an adventure. When turning to the first page you no ...more
Lisa Vegan
I read his book Flotsam before I read this one. In fact, I read this one becaue of Flotsam. This one is really amazing as it contains no words at all; Flotsam has very few words and the pictures do tell the story in that book as well. I liked the story and beautiful paintings in Flotsam even more than I did in this earlier published book. But this one is another winner. Even pre-readers can “read” it by themselves. Fun and imaginative.
Melissa
Oh wow! I came into this book not know that there were no words. But quite frankly no words are needed for this absolutely delightful journey. A boy falls asleep and his dreams flow seamlessly one after the other. I love how each picture gently transitions to the next scene. From his blanket turning into the country side to a chess board.

Obviously the illustrations are what make this book a wonder to behold. Sort of like when you watch Wizard of Oz every time you look at one of the illustration
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Marsha
In yet another one of his wordless picture books, Mr. Wiesner stretches his imagination to its limits. In the world of dreams, anything is possible, anything can happen and the realism of his illustrations only accentuates the surrealism of a little boy’s active nighttime inner journeys.

With protean swiftness, trees become the pages of a book, leaves become swans, cornflakes turn into fish, fish melt into the pattern of a blanket and buildings become rocks and rocks become buildings. Each page
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Thomas Anselin
This book is about a boy who falls asleep reading and is then taken into a world of fantasy. This book is horizontally oriented and relies on it to transition throughout the story. The picture with the castle and how everyone got really small I liked and it reminded me of the feeling far away in dreams that sometimes happens. Another note worthy thing in the book was the items from his room popping up in the story reminding us of familiar scene where things from our life are in our dreams. The t ...more
Janaee Cobbs
"Free Fall" was written by David Wiesner. There is a orange-yellowish border on the outside on the cover page. There is a little boy sitting on the brown leaf looking like he is floating on a creek of water with the fishes jumping in and out of water on the cover page too. The orientation of the book is horizontal like it is rectangle framed. "Free Fall" is a wordless picture book about a little boy who fell asleep while reading a bedtime story so the dream became the imagination in the little b ...more
Sarah Finley
This wordless picture book by David Wiesner was about a young boy who falls asleep while reading and has the most vivid and imaginative dream. David Wiesner takes you on a journey throughout this book without using one word. Every single page has borders just on the top and bottom of the page and the illustrations are still large and you feel like you're apart of the boy's dream. I'm not personally a fan of wordless picture books but I do think that the illustrations were very detailed and even ...more
Leyla Shill
This book really was a great read. It tells a very detailed story through very intricate pictures. There are thin boarders on the pages throughout the book suggesting a thin separation between reality and a dream. The horizontal layout of the book also helps you get lost in the story as you travel through different destinations. What makes the book so interesting is that throughout the boy's travels when he wakes up in his bed at the end you can find things throughout his journey in his bedroom.
Rachel
Another awesome wordless picture book from David Wiesner, this one won a 1989 Caldecott Honor award. In this book, a young boy is dreaming about far off places. A chess set comes alive and soon the boy is next to a peaceful dragon and some knights, queens and page boys. The boy becomes a giant, in a scene that looks like it was taken straight out of "Gulliver's Travels". My favorite image is of fallen leaves turning into swans and fishes. On the jacket flap is a poem, which I'm guessing the enti ...more
Jessica
Free Fall by David Wiesner follows a boy’s dreams one night as he falls asleep reading a book of maps. As he falls asleep, the map from his book floats across the pages and over a countryside that turns into a life-size chessboard with some life-size chess pieces. These chess pieces take him to a kingdom that looks like over-sized chess pieces. Magically, the iron-clad knights armor crumbles to the ground, revealing doves that fly from the kingdom into a forbidden forest of sorts, containing a d ...more
:Donna Marie
FREE FALL Since the spring of 2013, due to the amazing book Flora and the Flamingo, I have finally become a fan of wordless picture books. It took a while, but this past week, I revisited books by David Weisner, a master at the wordless picture book. I'm glad I now took the time to allow myself to truly look at and think about the content of the pictures in the wordless PB form because I was missing out on this wonderful genre of children's books! Since then, I've become aware of many I love an ...more
Kelsey
Sep 25, 2013 Kelsey added it
Free Fall is a wordless picture book that is a Caldecott Honor book. The story opens with a picture of a boy sleeping in bed. He has a book laying open on his chest, suggesting he fell asleep while reading. As he dreams he explores imaginary worlds full of castles, dark forests, giant books, and geese large enough for a human to ride on. The last image shows the boy waking up and finding an assortment of strange things on his bedside table, leaving the reader to wonder, was it all just a dream?

T
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Gloria Barbee
Free Fall by David Wiesner is a wordless picture book done is creative artwork. This beautifully done picturebook earned a Caldecott Honor in 1988. Its detailed watercolor illustrations tell the story of a young boy who drifts off to sleep after reading his story book. This illustrated dreamscape depicts the imaginative journey this boy takes as the characters in his book come to life as he slumbers.
Wiesner's double page spreads contain only white space on the top and the bottom of each page. Th
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Megan Anderson
Many children fall asleep while reading. However, the young boy who fell asleep in Free Fall had an amazing adventure in his dream. He played human-sized chess, goes to a castle, and fights alongside dragons. The creatures and places in this story are very dramatic and exotic. David Wiesner put together this wordless picture book as though it were in a story tale format. The young boy travels through different stories making the reader feel as though it was a story within a story within a story. ...more
Kim Young
Author David Wiesner takes readers on a magical journey through the imaginative dreams of a young boy. The boy dreams of rolling green hills, dragons,and even geese shaped like giant leaves. I am just now beginning to discover the wonderful world of wordless picture books and Wiesner's Free Fall will definitely stick with me above others. As always, his illustrations were beautiful and perfectly captured the adventurousness and innocence of the young boy's boundless imagination. The boy's face i ...more
Buchdoktor
Mit "Free Fall" sprengt David Wiesner das Medium Buch. Seine Traumgeschichte kann ich mir in Form eines Frieses in der Eingangshalle einer Schule vorstellen oder auch als Bildrolle. Auf dem Schmutztitel, dem Blatt vor dem Titelblatt, erinnert der sanfte Übergang von karierter Bettwäsche in eine Landkarte an Werke Esschers. Das Karodekor begenet uns wieder auf der Bettdecke eines Jungen, der mit seinem Buch im Arm eingeschlafen ist. Ein Windstoß blättert das Buch auf, öffnet ein kleines Kästchen ...more
Marc Ford
Free Fall by David Wiesner is about a boy and his dreams. The story begins with a young boy asleep with a book he was reading. As he sleeps, he dreams about far off places where he goes on many adventures until his dreams are broken up and he is awaken. When he is awake we see all the inspiration for his dreams all around him. Overall I thought it was a good story with a better message. The pictures do a great job telling the boys adventure. I was wondering if he was reading Gulliver's Travel?

T
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Shannon Wasgatt
Free fall is a wordless picture book. In the story the boy falls asleep with a book. It appears that he then falls in and out of different books interacting with different characters. The characters are also able to move in an out of the books.

In some places the boy looks scared or confused, while in other placed he looks relaxed. Although I feel like he is enjoying the experience he never really smiles or looks happy.

The pages are all double spread and have a white boarder on the top and bott
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Melody Wolen
Reading Level: 3rd grade
This book was a Caldecott Honor winner and contains only pictures with no dialogue or narration. It details a young boys’ vivid dreams as he sleeps near a book full of maps. A simple, but fun and effective teaching idea would be for groups of students to write captions for each page and put them together to make a class story; this activity would work best for 3rd or 4th graders.
Alice
First off, I really don't like no word books. I read a book, to have a story told to me, in the use of language not to look at artwork...I will go to a museum if I want to look at art.

All in all I didn't love it but I think it get the story line of the artwork... I just hate to have to make inferences. Some people like these types of book it is not my cup of tea.... oh well!!
Carly
This is a wordless picture book A young boy falls into a slumber after reading a book of maps. In his dream he travels the world and sees many things like large chess pieces that tie into a medieval land full of knights and a magical forest with a dragon. Next he's riding a pig along a canyon then all of a sudden he's a giant in a small city. After a few other strange encounters, the young boy finally awakes in his room to find that everything he saw on his journey was a play on something he had ...more
Cecilia
What happens when you fall asleep? Do you ever travel to another world to discover a new thing? Is it possible to follow your dreams? Wiesner does a good job with talking about the subject of dreams since most of his books are based on dreams he used to have as a child or ideas. He carries us into the dream world of a young boy. I was okay reading this book but there were moments when I wanted to give up and just look at the end see where it led to. Unfortunately when I looked at the last page I ...more
Jessica Rawden
This is David Wiesner's first book, and it was given a Caldecott honor medal. It seems to be the best example of a Wiesner book that reminds us he is a watercolor painter. Many of his other books are created using dark or bold colors, and its often easy to forget he uses watercolor most prominently as a medium.
Free Fall is the story of a boy who plays a magical chess game with pieces that are alive. In this dream world, the boy meets dragons made of castles and hops in and out of books, into an
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Heather
Free Fall, written and illustrated by David Wiesner, is a wordless picture book in which a young boy falls asleep while looking at a map, and is transported into a dreamland where scenery gradually shifts, from a castle to a chessboard and onward until the boy wakes up at home.Overall, I really enjoyed this work, however I have read the some reviewers feel that it is confusing for children. I can see the potential for confusion in that is is kind of unclear where all the settings are coming from ...more
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During David Wiesner's formative years, the last images he saw before closing his eyes at night were the books, rockets, elephant heads, clocks, and magnifying glasses that decorated the wallpaper of his room. Perhaps it was this decor which awakened his creativity and gave it the dreamlike, imaginative quality so often found in his work.

As a child growing up in suburban New Jersey, Wiesner re-cre
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