Parents' Guide to


By Peter Lewis, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 4+

A snake in the mail becomes part of a family.

Book Tomi Ungerer Horror 1983
Crictor Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 13+

Based on 1 parent review

age 13+

crictor by tomi ungerer

i love my family...!!

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Much of the pleasure of this book has to do with composure. Crictor's cool, as though it is standard procedure for a snake to be posted to a French village from Africa. And Madame Bodot is, for the most part (after some mild flapping when she opens the package Crictor comes in) unflappably self-possessed as she introduces the boa into her daily routine. Aplomb -- even the word sounds French.

Tomi Ungerer's artwork has that beguiling and otherworldly pen-and-ink charm reminiscent of Shel Silverstein and Edward Gorey. It is a world of creaky, economical lines, slightly off true, just like how you wanted your grandmother's house to be. And you can't help but grin that it is a snake that lies behind the learning of those letters and numbers, a snake on the page being worth any number in the grass.

Book Details

  • Author: Tomi Ungerer
  • Genre: Horror
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: HarperTrophy
  • Publication date: July 1, 1983
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 2 - 4
  • Number of pages: 32
  • Last updated: July 12, 2017

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate