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The Snowman (Step into Reading, Step 1)

4.27 of 5 stars 4.27  ·  rating details  ·  9,231 ratings  ·  267 reviews
Illus. in full color. A wordless story. The pictures have "the hazy softness of air in snow. A little boy rushes out into the wintry day to build a snowman, which comes alive in his dreams that night. The experience is one that neither he nor young 'readers' will ever regret or forget."--(starred) Booklist....more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published November 12th 1978 by Random House
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How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. SeussA Christmas Carol by Charles DickensThe Night Before Christmas by Clement C. MooreThe Polar Express by Chris Van AllsburgThe Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson
Favorite Christmas Books
13th out of 636 books — 822 voters
The Arrival by Shaun TanFlotsam by David WiesnerTuesday by David WiesnerThe Snowman by Raymond BriggsGood Dog, Carl by Alexandra Day
Wordless Picture Books
4th out of 130 books — 215 voters

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Community Reviews

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Anastasia Fitzgerald-Beaumont
Such Stuff as Dreams are Made On

This is not a review. How can one review a book like The Snowman, a story without words? It has to be experienced, that’s all, experienced through the eyes of a child. What follows is my own experience, my appreciation of a story that gave me so much pleasure over so many years.

There are stories and experiences from childhood that we all recall with some fondness. Even if we do not bring them to mind they are in our hearts, a warm glow that never dies. It is the...more
Petra Xtra Crunchy
This was a beautiful, gentle story that translated into a magnificent cartoon with music but without words that airs on tv every Christmas in the UK. This book was a real sea change for Briggs whose previous cartoon books include a doleful biography of his parents to their death, nuclear war and creatures that love boogers - much more dark humour than this magical tale of the snowman.
Jim Erekson
I always really liked this book (so I should have voted 4 stars), but this past winter my 13-year-old son Alma (Down Syndrome, autism) fell in love with it. He reads it daily, and wants me to read it with him sometimes. He loves that we can pull out the video or turn the soundtrack on on Spotify. When I watch him, he adores the pages drawn comic-style, with 16 boxes of sequential art per page. But then the next day he'll be poring over one of the wide spreads with just one drawing! So now I love...more
I used to read this book to my son, who recently turned 21. I came across a copy recently and was reminded of just how devastatingly beautiful the story is. I'm no artist, but it looks like it was done in colored pencil, which gives the snow and sky a surreal, dreamy texture. The real innovation is the wordlessness. I remember how my son and I used to just look at the pictures without talking, like we intuitively (telepathically maybe?) understood the story. He was a big fan of the video, too, e...more
Cute pictures. No words at all. The pictures tell the story of a nighttime adventure of a snowman and a boy. I liked the contradiction pictures of what happens with hot vs cold objects but the story itself is found to be boring quickly, even for the kids I 'read' this with. Play some of the things they do in the picture are things kids should not do without a mature adult and I do not feel a curious, naive, uneducated snowman counts. Still the storybook pictures aren't bad for a quick run-throug...more
A boy builds a snowman that comes to life. The story is told completely in pictures so the readers must use their imaginations to follow the adventures.

I love doing artwork with children and I think these pictures would be a perfect springboard to making winter pictures. I love this one especially:
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
I would ask my child or grandchild, "What can we use to make a snowy day on paper like this? Maybe draw the picture and find a way to fling some snow on the paper?"

Try reading this book with your chil...more
The story of "The Snowman" is a wordless picture book, and also one of my favorites. When I was little I used to watch the video every year at Christmas over and over. It has no words in it, just like the book, but is filled with Music perfect for the audience. This book tells the story of a young boy spending a snowy day outside in his yard building a giant snowman. Later that night, when hes supposed to be sleeping he looks outside to see that his snowman was come to life. As him and the snow...more
Donna Gofur
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
“The Snowman” is a cute story from the mind of Raymond Briggs and has been the most memorable classic book to ever grace upon the world of children’s books. This book is about how a young boy starts building a snowman and realizes that the snowman is magical and the true friendship he finds in the snowman. “The Snowman” is a true classic that everyone will love for many years!

Raymond Briggs’ story about a boy and his snowman is told through his beautiful illustrations as this is one of the few b...more
Jan 08, 2008 Chris rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Chris by: a friend
This is one of the most beautiful, touching books on friendship I have ever read (though it is wordless) about the magical nature of the birth of true friendship. The basic message is that to have a friend you have to first be one and you each have something special to learn from each other.
The Snowman pure magic and imagination, grounded in what makes us human.
This is a kind of child's dreaming that I can enjoy. A snowman coming to life and learning a little about human life. I like his fascination with light. And I loved the humor of anything related to cold (like getting into the deep freezer!).

Being a wordless book (not good for storytimes!!!) and with the illustrations having a bit of a fuzzy crayon look to them, I may have misread some of the pictures. Was the snowman laughing at the boy's picture and the boy was upset? Why does the boy look mad...more
Amy Flink
This is a cute, sweet, beautiful tearjerker from my childhood. I didn't recognize this story when I got it for my nephew but I later realized it was based on a holiday cartoon special I had seen as a child on PBS (But I didn't think I cared for it as a child because of the unsatisfying about a CLIFF-HANGER; it totally left me at a loss!). Today, however, it has grown on me and I think it is one of my favorite childrens' books of alltime! I seem to remember PBS introducing it as "Fr...more
Kirsty Rice
This is a lovely Christmas story about a boy who builds a snowman and has wonderful adventures with him. The lack of words really makes the child think. They can involve themselves in the story, imagining the conversations the could be having and how they might be feeling.
This book is great for all ages, though I would keep it in EYFS and KS1 classrooms. It’s a good tool for introducing children to the idea of death. There has been a lot of research into how children deal with loss in their life...more
I really love all the 'snowman' books I remember them from when I was a child and also remember watching the animation on TV at Christmas time. This book will be unforgettable for every child because everyone can relate to it. There are no words in this picture book but the illustrations show us the adventure of a little boy and his snowman allowing children to narrate the story. A little boy builds a snowman and later that day the snowman comes to life. The snowman comes to the boys house and e...more
Katie Agras
Raymond Briggs does a phenomenal job illustrating this wordless book. Every illustration captures the story perfectly. A boy wakes up and goes outside to build a snowman. The next night, he wakes to find the snowman had to come to life! The boy brings the snowman inside to his the house where he explores. After they have dinner, the snowman takes the boy back outside where the snowman grabs the boy and starts to fly away with him. As they see the sun start to rise, they fly back to the boys hous...more
Bistra Ivanova
Безкрайно красива и нежна детска книжка без думи, издадена през 1978, разказваща за вълшебната нощ, която едно момче и направеният от него снежен човек преживяват...

Етикетът "детска класика" Снежният човек получава през 1982, когато излиза 30-минутно филмче по книгата, пожънало небивал успех, получило номинация за Оскар и т.н., само дето в него място намират някои елементи, които липсват в оригинала - цялата коледна боза, включваща коледно дърво, посещение при Дядо Коледа, звънчета, елени, пода...more
Liz Hammet
"The Snowman" by Raymond Briggs is a beautifully illustrated and creatively expressed story that I used to love as a small child. As I was reading it again at an older age I could still recognize the magic of the snowman that I once felt when I was a small child. The child in the story creates a snowman on a snowy day and the snowman comes to life all at once. The child takes care of the snowman and does activities with the snowman. The images are the way that the story is told, not through word...more
Meghan Klyczek
"The Snowman" By Raymond Briggs is one of the best and easiest wordless books I have come across in a very long time. It was fast paced, but it made sense to be fast paced. During this book, a boy wakes up and goes outside to create a snowman. That night, he wakes up, and the snowman is alive and well. Throughout the book, the boy and snowman are exploring the different parts of the house that are not too bright and not too hot. For example, the snowman absolutely enjoyed eating ice cubes and si...more
Sep 15, 2014 Christy added it
Shelves: wordless
This wordless picture book shows a little boy going out on a winter, snowy day and making a snowman. He gets different items to make his eyes, nose and buttons. He gives his friend a scarf and hat. Even after going inside he checks and checks on his friend that he has made and his snowy friend is alive! The little boy takes the snowman through the house and shows him around and even shows off his sleeping parents. The silly snowman plays dress up while the parents sleep away. They play and do di...more
Shazida Begum
This is a picture book depicting the story of a little boy and his relationship with a much-loved snowman. One morning, the little boy, to his delight discovers that it has snowed. Through the illustrations we witness as he takes particular care to create his snowman. That night, to his utter amazement the snowman comes to life. The two then proceed to go on an enthralling adventure. The next morning, he is dismayed to find that his snowman has melted.

Although this book may lack words it more t...more
Jennifer Olson
This is a wordless book with dreamy watercolor like illustrations. In the book a boy builds a snowman and it comes to life in his dreams. Wordless books can be an important tool for reading readiness. Retelling the story helps learners connect with characters, setting and events in the the book and is a powerful check of comprehension even for more advanced readers(Ogle and Beers, 2012, p. 238). Appropriate extensions to writing for this book could be made at all levels from writing a word or tw...more
Brandy Reed
When growing up, building a snowman was always one of my favorite things to do in the winter. In the children’s piturebook The Snowman, by Raymond Briggs, every kids childhood dream comes true! A little boy goes out and builds a snowman. During the nighttime the snowman is able to come to life. Because of this, the boy is able to go with his new friend out for an adventure during the night before having to return home.
Picturebooks have this ability to share a story with an audience using no wo...more
Katelyn Spyhalski
Reading The Snowman was an incredible experience. The illustrations were stunning and exciting. This is a classic book where a boy builds a snowman and he comes to life and they play together. The snowman has a huge green floppy hat that give him so much personality. The boys expressions are priceless, they truly show his emotions. There is snow falling throughout all the illustrations which adds a "winter wonderland" feel to book. The boy uses different materials in his house that he finds to c...more
Briggs, R. The Snowman. Hamish Hamilton (1978).

The Snowman is about a little boy named James who makes a very large snowman one winter's day and at midnight the Snowman comes to life. He and James explore James' house without waking up James parents and then they go flying in the air. When James wakes up the next morning he finds the Snowman's scarf and discovers that he has melted.

The Snowman is a cute little story that I enjoyed when I was little, so it was really neat for me to reread it agai...more
Sarah Ravel
The wordless picture book, The Snowman by Raymond Briggs tells the fantastical tale of a young boy's adventures with a snowman of his own construction. The book is illustrated in a series of panels, some large and some small, that are all read left to right and top to bottom. The illustrations are drawn in in a hazy manner representing the snowy day. With soft, muted colors and soft edges the illustrations give a nostalgic feeling and contribute to the feeling of fantasy.The simple shapes also g...more
I never actually read this aloud to my elementary students...but we watched the video MANY times. In fact, if I do read the book, I hear the beautiful music from the film as I read. I anticipate this to be a film that I purchase for my own children someday and watch over and over.
Michelle McBeth
This book is a wordless book. The layout is in a film panel style. It flows in the manner of watching a film one panel at a time. The illustrations tell a story of a little boy who makes a snowman. The snowman comes to life. The boy and the snowman embark on an adventure where the little boy shows the snowman all about his life and the snowman shows the boy about his life. In the end they go back to their own worlds. When the boy wakes up in the morning, the sun is shining and the snowman has me...more
I was very nostalgic while reading this picture book over again. Even though there are no words, there is a wonderful story that I think all children would love to experience one day. When the young boy sees the snow he cannot get out of bed and outside fast enough! The illustrations by Raymond Briggs are perfectly timed throughout and speak for themselves. The fact that he drew them all with just simple colored pencils really speaks for his skill. The boy builds himself a great big snowman! The...more
One of the great love stories. David spends a magical night with the Snowman; the next morning, he has melted. He'd think it was a dream, except that he still has the scarf in his pocket.

No words, they'd only complicate things.
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Raymond Redvers Briggs is an English illustrator, cartoonist, graphic novelist, and author who has achieved critical and popular success among adults and children. He is best known for his story "The Snowman", which is shown every Christmas on British television in cartoon form and on the stage as a musical.

His first three major works, Father Christmas, Father Christmas Goes on Holiday (both featu...more
More about Raymond Briggs...
Father Christmas Fungus the Bogeyman When the Wind Blows Ethel and Ernest Gentleman Jim

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