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The Invisible Boy

4.35  ·  Rating Details ·  2,224 Ratings  ·  442 Reviews
Meet Brian, the invisible boy. Nobody ever seems to notice him or think to include him in their group, game, or birthday party ... until, that is, a new kid comes to class.

When Justin, the new boy, arrives, Brian is the first to make him feel welcome. And when Brian and Justin team up to work on a class project together, Brian finds a way to shine.

From esteemed author and
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published October 8th 2013 by Alfred A. Knopf (first published January 1st 2013)
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Feb 12, 2017 Mischenko rated it really liked it
The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig is a story about Brian, a boy who seems to go unnoticeable by anyone in his class. Something's about to change in his classroom and Brian finds a way to stand out. It's a great story with very artsy illustrations.

This is a great book that I'd recommend for any elementary classroom. It's great for parents and teachers.

Dec 23, 2013 Laura rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books

Have you ever felt left out? Alone in a roomful of people?

The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig introduces us to Brian. A sweet-hearted boy who feels invisible. In a class room swimming with kids, how does a quiet boy more apt to communicate with drawings and art stand out, find friends, and not get lost in the hustle, bustle and noise?

One act. One chance. One word can change everything. Brian reaches out with kindness to Justin, the new kid in class. Just leaving a note saying “Hi” in his own spec
A lovely tale of a boy who feels invisible.
I would recommend this book to any classes at the elementary level. It is a wonderful reminder for students about how it feels to be left out and how they can include others. It is also a great reminder for teachers to pay attention to ALL children. The pictures are very well done. I like how Brian is drawn in black and white at first. A terrific story!
May 10, 2016 Cara rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
This was such a sweet book! It would be great to use for a teaching moment if someone is being left out, or is leaving someone out.
Patricia Tilton
Nov 23, 2013 Patricia Tilton rated it it was amazing
Brian feels invisible to his teacher and friends at school. He is with them, but not really. What child has not felt invisible at some time in school. Trudy Ludwig masterfully tells a heartfelt story about a boy who wants to belong, but is ignored by others. Even his teacher doesn’t pay a lot of attention to Brian because she has to deal with other high-maintenance children in the classroom. Brian is kind-hearted and finds his own way to make a friend and gain the acceptance of the other student ...more
Oct 06, 2013 Becky rated it it was amazing
Shelves: readin2013
I definitely liked this picture book. It deals with the question: which is worse--being laughed at or feeling invisible?

Brian, our young hero, is the invisible boy. He's friendless. This is noticeable even in the classroom, but especially so in the lunchroom and at recess. But when a new student comes, Brian reaches out to him--via note, I might add--and soon Brian begins to lose his invisibility. It starts with the new kid, Justin, but soon expands to include others. It has a happy ending that
Aug 15, 2016 Megan rated it it was amazing
This book - wow! Just wow! This is the first review I'm writing on Goodreads because it was truly TOO good not to share! I picked this up at the library but now I'm thinking I will have to purchase it to add it to my shelf! What a powerful message about feeling left out for kids of all ages- and adults, too! Loved the reminder that we all have a special gift or talent to bring to others.
Steve Holden
Apr 22, 2017 Steve Holden rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderfully written and illustrated book for all children and any classroom. I love the message!

Brian is "The Invisible Boy." He feels this way in his classroom with his peers and teacher alike. There are other kids who are loud - they use their "outdoor voice inside," or require much more attention from the teacher. Brian enjoys school, loves art, and doing as he should. He's not overly outgoing, so his peers often pay attention to others before him. He feels alone and invisible.

This book would be read right after Each Kindness. Have you ever felt invisible before? What do you think invisible means in the title? Do you think that it means that he is really invisible? Have you ever felt this way before? What caused you to feel this way? What did you do? What kind of problem do you think this boy is going to have in this story? Have we read another story that is similar to this? Each Kindness is about being kind to everyone. Do you think that this story will be similar? W ...more
Hilary Misle
School Library Journal September 1, 2013
Review author: Martha Simpson, Stratford Library Association, CT
K-Gr 2-Brian feels invisible. His teacher hardly notices him, the other kids never invite him to play, and he eats lunch alone. But he loves to draw, so at recess, he creates comics about greedy pirates, battling space aliens, and superheroes with the power to make friends everywhere. One day, a new boy, Justin, joins the class. The other children make fun of him for eating Bulgogi, a Korean
May 09, 2014 Marilyn rated it it was amazing
I fell in love with Brian from the very beginning. He is so adorable and innocent, but unfortunately invisible to those in the world around him. He loves to imagine and create and drawing is his passion. Drawing is what keeps him going because his classmates never include him, never pick him for their team or choose to play with him, and he never gets invited to birthday parties. Even his teacher looks through him and doesn't stop to find out what a beautiful little person he is or what valuable ...more
As happens so often in classrooms in life, Brian seems to be forgettable. His classmates ignore him or forget that he is around, and he is often left out when choosing sides for kickball. But there's more to Brian than meets the eye. He has a fertile imagination and artistic flair. Plus, he is incredibly kind to others. When his classmates make fun of the Korean barbecued beef lunch of new kid Justin, Brian is the only one who doesn't laugh. His later act of kindness is returned by Justin when t ...more
I’ve had several tell me to get this book, and finally I did! Please don’t wait any longer if you haven’t read it yet. It’s a poignant story of too many in classrooms who are excluded and terribly lonely. It will be a terrific read aloud to discuss more than once with a class. A young boy named Brian is left out in most of the school activities, going unnoticed by even his teacher, until his smile and a thoughtful note begins a friendship with a boy new to the class. Patrice Barton’s beautiful i ...more
Jan 13, 2016 Sandy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens
This is so my book. So many times I feel just like Brian. I am an introvert and often feel invisible. Not because I'm shy or quiet. This is how we introverts are. Sometimes we feel left out but a lot of the time we are just fine reading, drawing, and being by ourselves. But I do remember worrying about lunch time at school. And not being invited to parties. I'm glad that Brian meets Justin, and they begin a friendship that includes others. A wonderful book.
Carrie Gelson
This book was an important read for me - but sharing it in a room full of students, it is huge -
Apr 26, 2016 Tahani rated it it was amazing
The Invisible Boy is a gem of a children's story. You have one little lad, Brian, in a classroom who feels left out, is the last to be picked for anything, doesn't get the invites and even the teacher over looks him because he is a quiet boy who doesn't create drama. It only takes one new child into the social group for things to change when they become friends. The illustrator matches the story so well by the simple technique of drawing Brian in pale black and white until he starts to "be seen" ...more
Irene McHugh
Dec 27, 2016 Irene McHugh rated it it was amazing
I almost cried reading this book with one of my nieces and my nephew.

Brian is smart, talented, and kind. He's also invisible to his classmates, who live in a much louder world. Brian spends his Choosing Time drawing fantastical pictures of dragons, space aliens, pirates, and superheroes. His pictures illustrate Brian's unique sense of humor along with his kindness.

His dragon lives at the top of a skyscraper. When residents hold out marshmallows, the dragon will toast them! When I asked the kids
The Styling Librarian
I’m a huge fan of Trudy Ludwig. Not only her book creations but her messages. I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to interview her as well. Additionally, Trudy recently wrote a post for The Nerdy Book Club called: Using Literature to Address Bullying and Foster Empathy in Young Readers. Powerful post with links to other books that are fantastic titles I’d select too!
I’ve been quite excited about her new book release: The Invisible Boy: By the way Patrice Barton created the most beautiful illustra
Rosi Hollinbeck
Jun 27, 2014 Rosi Hollinbeck rated it it was amazing
My review from the San Francisco Book Review
Brian seems to be invisible. No one seems to notice him. When all the children sit around the lunch table talking about the great birthday party Madison had over the weekend, Brian can’t talk about it because he hadn’t been invited. During recess when teams are chosen for games, the kids announce they have enough for the game without choosing Brian. Even in the classroom, the teacher spends all her time dealing with kids who whine and act out, leaving
Aileen Stewart
Nov 02, 2015 Aileen Stewart rated it it was amazing
The Invisible Boy gave me a feeling of such great joy because it had a beautifully happy ending. One boy finds himself on the outside looking in so to speak. No one notices him. No one chooses him for their team. No one seems to see him at all giving him the feeling that he is invisible. Until one day when a new boy who is different then the others comes to class. Because he is different, kids laugh at him. The invisible boy wonders which is worse, to be ignored or to be laughed at. He extends t ...more
Mar 01, 2016 Kim rated it it was amazing
In this picture book, Brian is nearly invisible to his classmates and teacher at school. No one invites him to parties, he is not picked to play games at recess, he is not talked to at lunch, and his teacher is too busy with other students to pay any attention to him. Brian is very unhappy at school until Justin, the new student arrives. Justin shows him what friendship is all about and Brian finally feels like he is not invisible anymore.

The illustrations in this book are done very well and hel
Mar 15, 2016 Jenny rated it it was amazing
This is a touching story. Brian feels invisible. His teacher is busy dealing with students with behavior issues. The kids in his class aren't noticeably mean to him; they just don't seem to see him at all. Then one day a new student arrives and is teased. Brian draws him a picture to help him feel better. Slowly, their friendship develops and Brian no longer feels invisible.

I think many readers will relate to this book in one way or another. I really apareciate that it includes discussion questi
Angela Ball
Feb 04, 2017 Angela Ball rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kidlit-ed204
(KidLit ED204 category: Monarch award)
I loved this book! I loved it not only for what it says, but what it doesn't say. The author is Trudy Ludwig, and illustrated by Patrice Barton)
This book is about Brian, the boy that nobody notices, not even his teacher. The illustrations in this book carry the story, in my opinion. Not only are the illustrations beautiful, the idea that Brian is always gray and white (invisible!) is an amazing way to illustrate the story. It is a joy to read this story and
Particularly recommended for my ELL students - the new kid (not the main character) is Korean-American, and there is some teasing about his lunch that I think my students will immediately empathize with, but once they are invested in that kid - presto! He turns out to be the hero of the piece. Love showing them that even as the uncertain new kid, they can be kind and important.
Mar 03, 2016 Bmack rated it really liked it
This is a picture book about a boy who feels invisible because no one wants to play with him at school or pick him for sports teams. That all changed when a new student arrived in his class and likes to play with him. At the back of the book are questions for discussion and other reading recommendations for both adults and children.
Rachel Watkins
Jan 29, 2013 Rachel Watkins rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc, picture-book
This beautiful story illustrated with pencil sketches should be a must-read for the beginning of the school year for ALL elementary students. The story of a boy no one notices will be familiar to teachers. Parents can use this book as well, to talk about friendships, kindness, and taking small risks like speaking to a new kid at school. I LOVED IT!
Eric L
Jul 17, 2016 Eric L rated it it was amazing
Truly an amazing story of how one simple action can mean so much to another person whether it is a student or an adult. No one should feel invisible like Brian did in the story!

Great book to read to an elementary class during the first week of school!
Aug 21, 2016 Sarah rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
This book is good. So good, in fact, that it brought back all my grade school anxieties, forcing me to take a Xanax before arriving at the book's satisfying conclusion. Just a heads up for those sensitive types like myself.
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Trudy Ludwig is a nationally acclaimed speaker and an award-winning author who specializes in writing children's books that help kids cope with and thrive in their social world. She has received rave reviews from educators, experts, organizations, and parents for her passion and compassion in addressing friendship, bullying, and cyberbullying issues at schools and conferences around the country.

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