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The Stranger

4.08  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,228 Ratings  ·  323 Reviews
The enigmatic origins of the stranger that Farmer Bailey hits with his truck and brings home to recuperate seem to have a mysterious relation to the weather. Could he be Jack Frost?
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published October 28th 1986 by HMH Books for Young Readers
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Adonis jack frost . a creepy ass version of him
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Feb 15, 2016 Elyse rated it it was amazing
This was a favorite book in my house -with 'both' of my kids. They loved to discuss it.

I was telling a Goodreads friend --that this book has many great memories to me--
Having just read the book called "Lions" by Bonnie Nadzam -- I remembered this book children's book (which is actually very mature).

"Lions" reminded me of this book....(similar feelings)

Wonderful nostalgia!
Feb 29, 2012 babyhippoface rated it really liked it
Great book to use in the classroom to teach inference. Teachers can have students guess the stranger's identity then go back through the book looking for supporting evidence. At first reading, they may think they have no idea who he is, but as they go back through they will spot the clues. This is the kind of book that I like to use in discussions because I like to see kids' faces change as the light bulbs go on in their heads.
Kacie Blakley
Oct 23, 2014 Kacie Blakley rated it it was amazing
"Chris Van Allsburg?", I thought to myself. "This is definitely a good one." And I certainly was not disappointed. Farmer Bailey is driving along in his truck and accidentally hits a man walking in the street. The man is totally dumbfounded, but the kind farmer takes him to his house to care for him. The Stranger soon becomes accustomed to living with this hospitable family, but Farmer Bailey notices the incoming fall weather turning back to summer. The Stranger soon realizes it is time to leave ...more
Tori Rhodes
Apr 18, 2016 Tori Rhodes rated it really liked it
Shelves: wow-books
The Stranger by Chris Van Allsburg is a suspenseful and mysterious fantasy picture book that quickly captured my attention. In the story, Farmer Bailey accidentally hits a man with his truck. The stranger comes home with Farmer Bailey and is treated like part of the family. Chris Van Allsburg does a wonderful job of demonstrating true hospitality. Farmer Bailey notices the peculiar weather and the strange behavior of the stranger. When the stranger leaves, something interesting happens: the seas ...more
Shannon Alexander
Feb 18, 2014 Shannon Alexander rated it it was ok
In "The Stranger," a farmer is driving when he hits something. He first thinks he's hit a deer, but he soon realizes that he's hit a man. He quickly gets out to help the man. The man is too hurt to leave, so the farmer takes him back to his house. Peculiar things start happening when the stranger arrives at the farmer's house. It is discovered that the man can't talk. The farmer and his wife have him examined by a doctor. The doctor's thermometer freezes when the stranger blows on it. The doctor ...more
Brittany Young
Sep 18, 2011 Brittany Young rated it liked it
The stranger was a very interesting book to me. It had a nice air of mystery to it. The cover seemed so interesting, but also so simple. There was nothing on the darkly colored back cover, and a thick boarder the same color as the back cover around the image on the front cover. The illustration on the cover was interesting, it looks almost clay like, and the man on the front looks clearly surprised or confused. The illustrations inside the book are very picturesque. It is as if each picture coul ...more
Megan Jones
Sep 20, 2012 Megan Jones rated it really liked it
Chris Van Allsburg's The Stranger is a peculiar one. At first glance, it can be misconstrued into a confusing, purposeless children's book. Yet, when dug deeper into the underlying meaning emerges and the coincident illustrations emerge from the pages. The Stranger is about a man who was hit by a car who cannot speak nor has any memory of who he is. A farmer and his family take him in and grow fond of him. However, when he notices the trees surrounding the farm are still green, yet all the other ...more
Xiaoxiao Zhu
Sep 14, 2012 Xiaoxiao Zhu rated it liked it
Have you ever encounter such stranger? No, I have never come across such stranger, it's amazing and almost impossible.

After reading it, I have to say Chris really is a creative author for children's book. To be honest, I'm moved by the final words --- "See you next fall." It's friendship, forever friendship.

As far as I'm concerned, this experience is really cool if I encounter a stranger in my favorite season. I will provide the stranger all my favorite food and he can provide me some of my want
Jul 06, 2011 Barbara rated it really liked it
When a mysterious stranger is accidentally hit by a truck, a farmer brings him home and takes care of the man. But who is he? Why is cold weather not coming to the farm? I love to use this picture book when teaching students about inferences. There are plenty of clues about who the mysterious stranger may be, but many readers don't recognize those clues until the story has been finished. Readers need to have some experience with seasonal change and cold weather as I found that many of my student ...more
Jun 08, 2016 EDUC535 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
L. Church

In this intriguing tale, a farmer accidentally hits what he believes to be a deer while driving home one afternoon. He discovers its actually a man, who appears to have lost his memory during the incident. The farmer takes the man home to his wife and daughter and quickly notices many unusual things about the quiet, yet kind, stranger. Wild animals are unafraid of him, and he works all day without tiring. Once he leaves, the air suddenly becomes cool as fall arrives. Throughout the tale
Christopher Seideman
May 02, 2015 Christopher Seideman rated it really liked it
Similar to how most science fiction/thriller films that take place on a farm begin, Farmer Bailey accidentally hits a strange man while driving home to his family one afternoon. When the man awakes, he’s lost his memory, so he and his wife decide to care for him until he fully recovers. However, he seems to have no social skills whatsoever, and casts an odd chill around him whenever he sits down to eat with the family for dinner. He’s a kind man, but the longer he stays, the stranger things beco ...more
Kristen Rigau
Feb 22, 2015 Kristen Rigau rated it liked it
In the story, The Stranger, written by, I felt very happy and a sense of comfort while reading the story. It starts out with a farmer driving along the road and accidentally hitting a man crossing the street, he feels so horrible, brings him back to his house and makes sure he is alright. They make “the stranger” feel at home and he almost becomes a part of the family. At the end of the story the stranger notices that some of the trees on the farm are not the same color as the others and wants t ...more
Daniel Cortez
Feb 22, 2015 Daniel Cortez rated it it was amazing
“The Stranger” by Chris Van Allsburg is a story that is about both mystery and hospitality. Farmer Bailey is driving on the road when he accidentally hits a man. He helps the stranger back to the farm and, although the stranger does not seem to be seriously hurt, he either cannot or does not talk. The stranger stays with the Baileys for a while. While he is there, he dances to music with them and he brings joy to their household. He helps Mr. Bailey around the farm by doing extra work. One nigh ...more
Brenda  Roman
Nov 29, 2014 Brenda Roman rated it it was amazing
The stranger by Chris Van Allsburg, is about farmer Bailey having an accident in the late summer. The guy he hits was dressed up all in leather. Farmer Bailey took him to his house because he lost his memory and couldn’t remember his name or where he was from. Weeks passed and the stranger still didn’t know what had happened to him. Farmer Bailey noticed how fall was never going to come. The man stays with them being part of the family.

I love “The Stranger” and all the illustrations in the book
Chris Van Allsburg’s The Stranger is about a strange man that Farmer Bailey hits with his truck late one summer. Farmer Bailey’s wife and daughter welcome the confused man dressed in a usual suit of leather. The doctor tells the family that the stranger has temporarily lost his memory and should regain it in a few days. The stranger stays with the Baileys and becomes part of the family despite his peculiar ways, such as working all day without sweating or tiring. The family notices that fall has ...more
Haley Gawel
Apr 21, 2014 Haley Gawel rated it liked it
This was a very frustrating yet interesting read. This book is about a stranger who gets mauled by a farmer. The farmer feeling horrible, and brings the man back to his home. A doctor is called to make sure the man is well, but it ends up that the man has lost his memory. From then on, the book has a few odd scenarios and nothing really gets cleared up. I read it a couple times to try and get a better grasp of what is going on within the story, and personally I feel like the man had the ability ...more
Danielle Boles
Feb 18, 2014 Danielle Boles rated it liked it
The Stranger by Chris Van Allsburg is a story about a farmer who accidentally hit a man with his car. The farmer took the man home to his house and gave him a standard check up. The farmer's daughter saw the man outside the next morning playing with rabbits and noticed it was odd that the rabbits did not run away when the man approached him; she had noticed he had a way with animals. The man could still not remember who he was after two weeks, but the family did not mind. While the man was on th ...more
Kyla Frey
Feb 18, 2014 Kyla Frey rated it liked it
This picture book is about a "stranger" who gets hit by a farmer who then takes him home to make sure he is alright. They call a doctor out to make sure the stranger is okay, and the doctor just says he has lost his memory. After a few weeks his memory still had not returned, but he started to blend well with the family. He went outside one day and noticed that the immediate surrounding trees were green, and farther out the trees were red and orange. This did not satisfy the stranger, so he left ...more
Emily Scott
Feb 17, 2014 Emily Scott rated it liked it
This book is about a farmer named Mr. Bailey. In the beginning of the book Mr. Bailey hits a man with his car. He brings him home and gets him looked at. The stranger seems very confused about easily understood things such as blowing on hot soup. Mr. Baileys family wonders if he has trouble talking. They put the stranger to work the next day and he never complained. Two weeks later he still couldn’t remember who he was and Mr. Baileys family started referring to him as a “hermit.” One day the st ...more
Megan Cureton
The Stranger is a book about a Farmer Bailey and how he had an accident hitting a man. Mr. Bailey ended up taking the man back to his house and called the doctor, which stated that the man had lost his memory. Katy, Mr. Bailey's daughter, grew fond of the stranger, and spent a lot of time with him, along with the rest of the family. Two weeks had passed and the stranger still didn't have his memory, but the family didn't seem to mind. The stranger started to notice that the trees north of the Ba ...more
Jun 28, 2016 Amy rated it really liked it
This book provides a new take on the traditional story of Jack Frost, using an unfamiliar figure who arrives into the Bailey home at the end of summer. The story depicts the family welcoming him into their lives, as a member of the family, but he still remains a stranger to some extent. One day, he looks out at the fields around the Baileys’ farm and admires the red and orange autumnal trees, wishing all trees could be this colourful.
The Stranger is a simple book to follow, with text alongside p
Dec 06, 2014 Leah added it
The Stranger starts off with Farmer Bailey who hit a strange man, whom no knew who he was. After a while the stranger grew close to the family. He begins to help out on the farm tirelessly. As the season progresses, Farmer Bailey notice that the weather is not changing while the stranger is there. Who is the stranger and why can he affect the weather?
The book has full colored illustrations to complement the text. The text is on one side of the page with the illustrations on the other. These ill
Leslie Kress
Feb 08, 2015 Leslie Kress rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
The Stranger by Chris Van Allsberg is an intriguing and mysterious read. The illustrations are fabulous and I think the cover makes the book intriguing because the stranger looks hypnotized and creepy. The best part of this story, to me, is the mystery of who the stranger is. The stranger is hit by a car and can’t remember his identity so he stays with a farmer and his wife. The end of the story does not tell us who the stranger is, but there are a lot of subtle clues. I personally like that thi ...more
Jordan Laskoski
Sep 18, 2011 Jordan Laskoski rated it it was ok
This book was kind of weird in a lot of ways. It was definitely a mysterious book to me. I was confused about what was going to happen to the stranger at the end of the book? I think this would be a great book to read to children though because they will be captivated about who the stranger is throughout the whole story. This could also make for an amazing writing activity after reading aloud to the classroom.
Jennifer Gass
Jul 27, 2016 Jennifer Gass rated it liked it
Shelves: author-study
The Stranger tells the story of a very peculiar man. One day, Farmer Bailey hits a man with his truck, causing the man to lose his memory. After the farmer takes him back to his home with his wife and daughter, the man continues to stay silent. Soon this man becomes part of the family even though odd things seem to occur when he is around. Chris Van Allsburg does a wonderful job adding mystery into the stranger's mood through his actions. Students who are listening to this book being read aloud ...more
Philip Carlson
Nov 15, 2014 Philip Carlson rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
This book is about a Farmer who accidentally hits a man with his truck on his way back to the farm. The farmer, being a kind and gentle soul, loads the man into his truck and takes him home to care for him. The man does not speak and seems to have no memory of who he is. He is a stranger. During his stay at the farmer's house, the stranger becomes accustomed to the farmer and his family and participates in their activities around the farm in preparation for the coming Winter. The stranger shows ...more
Feb 18, 2014 Kristen rated it really liked it
This book is about a farmer who accidentally hits a man with his truck, he brings this man back to his house and has a doctor come and check on him. The man is dressed sort of strange, and doesn't remember who he is or where hes from. The man worked with the farmer in the field and never got tired. The stranger was fascinated by birds. Two weeks later he still didn't know who he was but they didn't care, they considered him part of the family. The season did not change while he was there. He got ...more
Christina Bergstrom
Sep 19, 2011 Christina Bergstrom rated it did not like it
Personally, I found the book confusing. I would think that a child would be confused by it also. It is never clear who/what The Stranger really is. The illustrations are nicely detailed and I like the colors and the depth that are created by the Van Allsburg. The endpages are in a fall color that matches the theme of the book. The illustrations coincide with the story as it is told.
Lisa P.
Feb 18, 2014 Lisa P. rated it really liked it
The Stranger was an excellent story done by Chris Van Allsburg. I never heard of this story before but after reading I was pleasantly surprised by the storyline. I always consistently wondering who the stranger was exactly, why he didn’t know too much, and why the feeling of summer left when he did. I would label this story as a mystery because of the unknown factors of the man. I enjoyed the way the Bailey’s adopted the stranger into their family and were even upset when he left. Even though th ...more
Taylor De La Fe
Feb 19, 2014 Taylor De La Fe rated it it was ok
This book is about a farmer who hit a man in his car. He took the man home with him to care for him, but the man seemed very strange. He did not quite understand what was happening and he did not know his name or anything. When he went outside and saw rabbits, it was as if they expected him to go with them to the woods. Many weeks passed and he became more part of the Bailey family. WHen it was supposed to turn to fall, they noticed around the Bailey's house, it was still summer. When the strang ...more
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Chris Van Allsburg 7 13 Sep 26, 2011 04:12PM  
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Chris was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan on June 18, 1949, the second child of Doris Christiansen Van Allsburg and Richard Van Allsburg. His sister Karen was born in 1947.

Chris’s paternal grandfather, Peter, owned and operated a creamery, a place where milk was turned into butter, cream, cottage cheese, and ice cream. It was named East End Creamery and after they bottled the milk (and made the ot
More about Chris Van Allsburg...

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