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I am sure everyone will be familiar with the traditional children's song "Frosty the Snowman". The original song does not mention Christmas, or Santa Claus, but with it's wintertime theme, and the fact that I also grew up with the Rankin Bass film, which does feature Santa as well, Frosty has always been a part of Christmas for me, and I am sure many others will automatically associate this song with the Christmas season.
This book is the original text to the song, written by Jack Rollins and Steve Nelson for Gene Autry to record in 1950, and they are listed as the authors of this book. There is no other text whatsoever other than lyrics to the tune. The name Frosty is written in large red text, but the rest of the text is in large bold black print on a white background. Because many children will already know the words to the song, I think this is ideal for those who are just learning to read.
The illustrations are by Rebecca McKillip Thornburgh, and artist I was not familiar with. It appears most of the books she has worked on are religious. I have to confess, I will always have a soft spot for the old fashioned illustrations in my old "Little Golden Book" from the 60's, but I just think of Frosty as the cartoon from the Rankin Bass. Needless to say , with issues such as copyright infringement, this author has had to create her own version of the lovable snowman. The pictures are cheerful and well done, perfect for reading on cold winter's nights.
This book is available as a board book and a paperback. Our copy is a board book, which I feel suits this simple story very well. The pages are very thick and would be nearly impossible to tear. You can even wipe them off with a damp cloth if needed. This makes this book ideal for the youngest of children, and I think this would be lovely for babies. My youngest is 3 and quite enjoys this book as well. The oldest picked it up and read through it once, but it is a bit too young for him. Still he can have fun trying to sing fast enough to keep up with the music, which to date no one has ever managed. It becomes a sort of singing race, which brings us to out final point about this book, the music.
This book has one of the musical chips implanted so as soon as you open the front page, it begins to play the tune of Frosty the Snowman. This is just like the type of chip found in greeting cards, and is a bit high pitched and tinny sounding. I think it would have been nice to provide the background tune so you could sing along with the music as you read each page in song. The problem is, that this chip seems to play at high speed. It completes the entire song in 30 seconds flat. You can sing very fast and keep up with it it for a bit, but we always falter before the end. I challenge all of you ( especially at if you are at work ) to get out your watches and try to sing the entire song in 30 seconds. Even the chipmunks version takes longer. So what could have been a nice background sounds becomes quite annoying as you turn the pages, blaring away in greeting card shrill pitch as you try to read out the text much more slowly. It would have been so much better if they could have spared a full minute for the tune. On the plus side - it makes for an amusing Christmas game and Frosty song Olympics will now be part of Christmas Eve games with a prize to whomever can get the farthest in the book without losing pace with the music.
I have deducted one dooyoo star for the issue with the music player, but I still think this a lovely book. It would be perfect for babies who could have fun opening and closing it to hear the music, and enjoy the brightly coloured pages with smiling children and a cheerful snowman. Even for children who are older it is still fun, and a nice book to read while waiting for Christmas to come. I would recommend purchasing this book for children from 6 months - 3 years, but it could also be very useful for beginning readers up to the age of 6. As to my Frosty singing races - that could be fun even with adults - well immature adults like myself anyway.
* This book does not show Frosty melted or melting away ( as some books do). I think this is best as it is meant for very young readers. I hope you don't count this as a spoiler, but if you were buying the book hoping to see poor Frosty melt then shame on you! Seriously, I remember being quite sad at seeing Frosty melting, or dying as I thought, as a child and I do think this is an important consideration for many parents.
I find these books seem to be far cheaper in the summertime and picked mine up for about £2.40, as new. Currently, a new copy will cost you £4.04 - £ 5.39 with Amazon and used copies are available from £2.81. These prices include postage.