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

Tonya Nelson

I grew up listening to this poem on Christmas Eve, so it makes me a little nostalgic. Although, I am not sure that I would incorporate this book into curriculum unless other holidays are a part of the unit as well.Summary: The poem begins with a description of a silent house and carefully constructs what the house is like the night before Christmas. It uses wonderful similes and descriptive words that help paint a picture in the readers’ minds even with the beautiful, intricately drawn illustrations. The author describes the eve from the father’s point of view using rhythm and rhyme effortlessly and concludes the poem with St. Nicholas leaving his goodies and flying off in the night.Characteristics to Support Genre: This is one of the oldest and most popular Christmas poems. Its rhythmic, rhyming lyrics easily roll off the tongue.Concepts Integrated: vocabulary, compare and contrast, (snowman) Venn diagram, similesOther Suggestions that could be useful regarding literary content, reading level, and other ways in which the book might be integrated: 2-5 grade readersWriting – This is a great book/poem that uses many similes, so students could create their own about a celebration of their own or about winter. We could also talk about how this particular poem rhymes. Another idea that I liked for this book would be to compare and contrast using a snowman compare and contrast visual. Students could compare their celebration with the one mentioned in the book. This book could also prompt a mini-lesson about using quotations marks when characters in a story speak.Snowman Compare and Contrast: http://www.ashleigh-educationjourney....


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!

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.


Following the classic Christmas tale, this version of the story is made special by the illustrations. Brallier has created fifteen stained glass illustrations for the book. They range from holiday mantles to close ups of the reindeer and of course Santa Claus. Santa does not wear a red hat here but instead has the robes of an English Santa Claus. It makes the feel all the more timeless and special. Throughout, Brallier has small touches that are worth finding. I was entranced by her use of smaller mosaic pictures on the walls as art. She also includes decorations on blankets and tassels as well as snowflakes in the snow and stars in the sky. Though the art is done in such a hard medium, there is no feeling of the limitations put on the art by that. In fact, the depth of color and the texture of the mosaic glass add much to the book. My only quibble would be that I’d love to have had an illustrator’s note at the end of the book about her process in creating the illustrations. I’d love to have a sense of their scale. Happily, details like this are available on the author’s blog.A gorgeous new version of a Christmas classic, this one is worth sharing as a holiday treat. Appropriate for ages 4-7.

Kathie Meyer

This is a very biased review since I know the illustrator personally and was a model for one of the elves that appear in the book. My very special kitty, Larry, is pictured in the Christmas stocking at the end too. In fact, Watson used all real people to model for Santa, the elves and the family in the story, and he set the book in Port Townsend, Wash. where he lives. The clocktower is our actual courthouse in town.Having said all of that...I think this is one of the most wonderfully illustrated books of this popular Christmas tale I have ever seen. Truly.To see more of Watson's work, visit


I won this book as a Goodreads First Reads giveaway. When the book arrived and I opened the package, I was blown away by the illustrations. Every time I look at the pictures on each page I am beyond amazed. It is obvious that a lot of time and effort was put into the design and creation of this book. I cannot wait to read this to my cousins and hopefully as they grow older they will appreciate the artwork.

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.


I doubt this is my edition: it was/is a children's book, hardcovered, but only about 6" by 4" (I put it out on a stand every Christmas). I had it read to me, of course, and then learned to get through it myself. I won't say it taught me to read, but it did help.


Descriptions of human sacrifice and the power of blood magic are commonplace throughout history, but one — Clement Clarke Moore’s ‘TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS — takes place on the eve of a holiday that most consider a time of joy, happiness and generosity. This makes a poem that would be unsettling in any circumstances an intense, dark and enduring tale of supernatural horror. Set on the eve of the eponymous Christian feast day, the book begins innocently enough, with a desperately poor family bedding down for the night in their rodent-infested hovel. The home’s malnourished children sleep, dreaming not of extravagant gifts, but paltry sweets that might ease the pain of their bloated bellies; they hope against hope that simple balls of sugar might replace their hunger pangs with, for at least a little while, a pittance of holiday cheer before they have to set out on another day of begging on street corners.More:

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.

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.


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


Like most people I know, this poem is part of their Christmas vernacular. In my childhood home, my father would read it every Christmas eve. I wanted to continue that tradition with my kids but I wanted a version that had truly beautiful illustration. Gennady Spirin's deft hand more than delivers. The artwork is magical and draws us in. This version will be the Christmas Eve tradition of this home!


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


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.

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