The Night Before Christmas

ISBN: 0750026561
ISBN 13: 9780750026567
By: Clement C. Moore Jan Brett

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Childhood Childrens Books Classic Classics Currently Reading Favorites Fiction Holiday Kids Picture Book

About this book

With over 600,000 copies sold, Jan Brett's New York Times bestselling edition of Clement Moore�s classic Christmas poem celebrates its tenth anniversary with a note from Jan and an exquisitely redesigned jacket with red foil trim, making this a delectable holiday treat. A new generation of readers will find Jan�s visual interpretation of this favorite poem, set in a snowy New England village, both familiar, as St. Nick visits a Victorian family, and surprising, with Jan�s addition of two stowaway elves from the North Pole.

Reader's Thoughts


Santa quit smoking!! No pipe! I got this as a free download for my kindle. Love the illustrations!!!


This is a beautiful Christmas poem written by Clement Clarke Moore. I heard this on an audio book from gutenberg project and then also read the text from an e-book. The audiobook was in a sweet voice of a kid stopping and stumbling over some of the complex words. Brought up in a Hindu house and an environment where many religions live and thrive together, for me Christmas has always been when some people in my neighborhood sang songs in the night and then around midnight a fat guy dressed in all red goes on a visit from one christian house to the other. When this "Santa Claus" used to ride up the stairs heading to the home of a Christian family that lived right above our apartment i used to confront him. I stood there in awe of such huge man with my eyes ogling at his large belly. He gave me a warm handshake and fistful of chocolates before moving ahead. This being the nicest memory for me of Christmas apart from the desire of the Christmas cake that I used to fulfill by visiting my brothers Convent school and my then tution teacher who also happened to be christian. This all was much before I ever heard of evangelism and even after living happily with so many Christian families, how this word still makes sense to me I don't know. This is a nice poem to be read by everyone. And finally I know from where came the magical rhythmic words that I have heard umpteen times HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD-NIGHT!

Candace W.

This book tells the classic story of The Night Before Christmas, but with special cut outs and a beautiful pop-up finale. I really liked this book, because it tells a story that children know and love with a beautiful addition to it. The illustrations are done in mostly black and white, and are very beautiful. Beyond that, the cut out sections in them allow one illustration to illustrate two sections of the story just by turning the page. Last but not least, the pop-up finale is very intricate and quite pretty. The only downside to this book is that the pop-up section is delicate, so younger children may damage it easily if an adult doesn't pay close attention to them while they're reading it.


Illustrations were awesome, but I didn't like that fact that it showed Santa Clause smoking on a pipe in a children's book.

Marie Gentilcore

Amazing! Just read this to the kids tonight for bedtime story and it never gets old. A beloved classic. Also, the illustrations on this ebook are fabulous! Highly recommend the ebook.

Joyce McCombs

I collect TNBC books (I have 101 so far!) but this version by Jan Brett is my new favorite. Brilliantly colored pictures sweep you immediately back to childhood... just one look at the Christmas tree page and even if it's July, you'll feel the holiday spirit, I promise!

Shannon (Giraffe Days)

I had never read this before, I'm pretty sure - we certainly never had a copy in our house nor any pre-Christmas tradition of reading it, nothing like that. Probably my primary school had an old copy but I don't think I was too interested. So this was a new reading experience for me, one I approached without any memories or sense of nostalgia to guide me. I got it because it's such a classic, and I believe it's the origin of Santa's sleigh and reindeer (which are named), though don't quote me on that.I decided to get the original edition - I love the old style of illustrations and I didn't want anything changed or edited. It's a classic, after all! What I found was a really delightful poem that carries with it a great sense of expectation, anticipation and atmosphere, far more than I would expect, and the descriptions had that Narnia quality - it's the only word I can think to describe it, but basically I mean the way things looked in an age gone by, an older period that's nostalgic to us now.It's not the children who discover St. Nicholas, but their father, who is woken by the "clatter" of a sleigh and eight small reindeer, who waits for him to exit the chimney. I love the descriptions of Saint Nick, some of which I've included here, followed by their accompanying illustrations: He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot'A bundle of Toys he had flung on his back,And he looked like a pedler [sic] just opening his pack. The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;He had a broad face and a little round belly,That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly. He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread; I'm not sure how much of our current Santa mythology comes from this poem - I'll have to wait to find out when I read Gerry Bowler's Santa: A Biography later on - but whether it started anything or not, it's certainly played a big part in immortalising it all. Little has changed since this was published in 1912 - really the only thing different is that Santa was later dressed in Coca Cola colours for their own marketing, something we've been stuck with ever since. Another reason why I wanted the original, pre-Coca Cola illustrations.This was a truly delightful read, in a purely nostalgic sense, and while I may not have grown up with it as a kid, it manages to bring back that sense of excitement and wonder and make you feel like a bit of a kid again, which is always a good feeling.


Classic, oft repeated story but Jan Brett's illustrations put this version a cut above.


Clement Clarke Moore’s The Night Before Christmas: A Victorian Version of the Christmas Classic is about the quiet-snowy night before Christmas in a New England home. The father of the family narrates the story and guides the reader on a charming journey throughout his night. The children were snuggled away in their beds meanwhile St. Nick and his reindeer delivered presents to all the good boys and girls. The Night Before Christmas: A Victorian Version of the Christmas Classic is a classic poem book. This poem is an example of narrative poetry because the poetry tells the story of what happened the night before Christmas. Additionally, this poem book has a soft gentle rhythm scheme which is another characteristic of a poem book. Furthermore, this book is a good text to use when students about poetry and rhymes. This is a great poem book for kindergartners, first, and second graders.


This is amazing. When I saw this one the list of recommended reads for the Memoria Press Third Grade, I thought surely it is not necessary as I already have two other versions by other illustrations, more whimsical than this black and white. But then when I got it out at the library, boy did I discover a treasure. I will have to look for this one to buy. The first page has a little historical note about the original presentation of the Account of a Visit from St. Nicholas, now known to us as The Night Before Christmas. This is fabulous. The pictures are enchanting and almost pure magic. Even in black and white they are truly fascinating on their own especially with the kept tradition of the original wording, and original spelling. I'm enchanted and now know why this was the edition and version chosen. My library has a great condition copy, but I think we'll have to own this one.


First published in 1823, Clement C. Moore’s poem “The Night Before Christmas” continues to endear legions of young readers. In-print picture books of Moore’s work are plentiful, growing each year as illustrators’ pair their artwork with his classic lines. Mary Engelbreit’s edition does not disappoint. Her colorful, highly-detailed drawings finely capture to the nuances of the Christmas season. Every available space in the book is filled with illustrations. Mice, cats, and dogs meet Santa’s arrival with their human master, while sleeping children dream of what they will find under the Christmas tree the following morning. Fairies, elves, reindeer, and Santa beautifully illustrate the magic of the season. This much-beloved tale of holiday cheer merits a place in every library collection. Highly recommended!

Chris Mills

“Perfect for children of all ages” it reads on the back cover, and even though I have heard it read hundreds of times, this old classic never fails to raise my Christmas spirit. This timeless poem about Santa’s arrival on Christmas Eve has been illustrated by many different artists since it was first published almost 190 years ago. The ‘aa-bb’ rhyming sequence is what makes the flow of the story and pace so exciting. I think this book would be a nice one to read to a key stage one class, although I'm sure older children would like it in the run up to Christmas.

Pamela Mccoll

After smoking away for 189 years Santa gives up the pipe and is no longer depicted as having a wreath of smoke around his head - all a good thing in the era when we are doing so much to try and get our kids or grandkids not to start smoking. Twas The Night Before Christmas was written by Clement C. Moore in 1822 on a sleigh ride home from Greenwich Village with his nine children on Christmas Eve. It has gone on to become the most famous poem in the English language. That is now is offered in a smoke-free version is something that could well insure the poem's longevity.


Every year on Christmas Eve, my husband obliges me by reading this out loud to me.

Sarah Winters

A great Christmas book with very detailed pictures. It also has rhyming on each page that students would be able to identify. A great book that many children could read. I would recommend it for first to fourth graders.

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