Once Upon a Story
November 14, 2014

 Snowman’s Story by Will Hillenbrand

Published by: Two Lions

Release date: November 2014

Ages: 4-7

Pages: 32

From the publisher:

One wintry day, a hat lands on the head of a newly made snowman and brings him to life. Hiding inside the hat is a rabbit, who listens to the snowman read a story to some animal friends. When the snowman falls asleep, the rabbit hops away with the book. But the snowman isn’t about to let his story or the mischievous rabbit get away. The chase is on Filled with charm and fun, this wordless picture book from a beloved illustrator lets kids tell their own version of the story, even as they delight in the action-filled pages.

About the Author:WillHillenbrand2012 (2) - Copy

Will Hillenbrand has illustrated many beloved picture books, including Kiss the Cow by Phyllis Root; and Sleep, Big Bear, Sleep!, and Sneeze, Big Bear, Sneeze! by Maureen Wright. He has also written and illustrated a number of picture books, including Down by the Barn, the Bear and Mole series, and Mother Goose Picture Puzzles. Will enjoys visiting schools to talk about the creative process involved in making a picture book. He lives with his wife, Jane, and their son, Ian, in Terrace Park, Ohio. For more information, visit his website: http://www.willhillenbrand.com.


My thoughts:

(PSST! Once you’re done reading, scroll all the way down to the bottom for some free goodies, and a giveaway!)


I’ve written before about how much we enjoy wordless picture books. It’s a chance for my emergent reader to “read” the story, in her own words. And they’re often so richly illustrated that that story can change with every reading.

Snowman’s Story opens with an inquisitive bunny who discovers a top hat in a winter field. At this point, the reader already has an idea where this story might be going. Sure enough, a strong wind whips the hat up and onto the head of a nearby snowman, constructed by the forest animals. Immediately, the snowman comes to life, but instead of leading everyone “down the streets of town”, he opts for reading his newfound friends a story. When the story ends, bedtime looms and the sleepy animals depart, waving goodbye to the yawning snowman. But wait. Has anybody remembered the inquisitive bunny? Out he pops, grabbing the book, and suddenly the chase is on. Through the woods, over a gorge, ducking snowballs, Snowman and his friends eventually find the sneaky bunny, who has a surprise of his own.

 In our current Christmas collection, we have two copies each of The Snowman by Raymond Briggs, and the Golden Book version of Frosty the Snowman.  In each case, one copy is so well-loved that the binding has split and the book falls apart in your hands. One of the Frosty books is from my parent’s childhood, so it’s on its third generation. Knowing that tiny hands don’t always equal gentle hands, we packed our old copies away somewhere safe a few years ago and bought newer copies to replace them. Thank goodness, because our children love both classic stories as much as we did.

 Snowman’s Story feels like a blend of the two. It has the warmth and richness of The Snowman, with the adventure and kid-appeal of Frosty the Snowman. Usually when I receive picture books for review, I immediately read them with my own pint-size reviewers. Who better to offer an honest opinion? This time, though, I’ve hidden the book. Every year, in the 24 days leading up to Christmas, the kiddos and I unwrap a seasonal book to share after dinner. The selected books are a mix of classic and contemporary, books we’ve had for years (or even from my childhood), and books I buy new. This year, I look forward to adding this one to the rotation. I’m anticipating frequent reads.

Check out this book trailer:

And now…



Congratulations, Maureen B.!


Want to win a copy for yourself? Two Lions/Amazon has generally offered a copy to give away. Enter below by 11:59m on Sunday, November 30th.  (U.S addresses only, please)



Even MORE Fun!


Help Snowman Find his Story (free downloadable game!)
Snowman’s Story Coloring Sheet
Follow all the stops on the SNOWMAN’S STORY blog tour!
Mon, Nov 3
As They Grow Up
Tues, Nov 4
Cracking the Cover
Wed, Nov 5
Geo Librarian
Thurs, Nov 6
5 Minutes for Books
Fri, Nov 7
Momma Drama
Sat, Nov 8
Booking Mama
Mon, Nov 10
Just a Little Creativity
Tues, Nov 11
Kid Lit Frenzy
Wed, Nov 12
Children’s Book Review
Thurs, Nov 13
Displaced Yinzer
Fri, Nov 14
Once Upon a Story
Unleashing Readers






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