How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Book review by
Robyn Raymer, Common Sense Media
How the Grinch Stole Christmas Book Poster Image
Dr. Seuss subtly exposes greed and commercialism.

Parents say

age 3+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 2+
Based on 6 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Positive Messages

The Grinch steals the entire community's Christmas goodies, but the thief experiences a complete change of heart. He cruelly mistreats his dog at first.

Violence & Scariness

The Grinch may scare the littlest readers

Language

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the lovingly constructed rhymes teach the merit of making reparations for misdeeds, and question the commercialization of Christmas. Kids love hating the mean, funny villain and cheering his reformation. Whimsical illustrations and witty rhymes keep kids captivated.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byMichael Loughrie February 20, 2016

Oh damn what a classic!

This is the king of all classics, in books, movies, and even music. This is the king of classics. And it should live on. The book is awesome!
Adult Written byLowe's man March 22, 2015

essential reading

This book is a classic, and for good reason. While The Grinch is coldhearted at first, he reforms himself at the end. At that point the Whos forgive him, a re... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byschuymarch1 April 9, 2008
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008

A great book for young readers.

I think that little kids love this book because it is so lively and nice. It teaches things like christmas is more than just presents and things. I read it over... Continue reading

What's the story?

The cantankerous Grinch hates the holidays--principally because of the Yuletide racket. Aiming to halt Christmas in its festive tracks, the potbellied, pink-eyed Seussian Scrooge impersonates Santa and confiscates every last Who-ville Christmas bauble and goody, from trees to tricycles to cans of Who-hash. This classic Christmas read-aloud features one of the funniest scoundrels in children's literature.

Is it any good?

Dr. Seuss subtly exposes greed and commercialism and promotes the values of love and community with wit, humor, and flawlessly constructed rhymes. The true spirit of Christmas leaps off the double-page spread of the Whos holding hands, even after all their Christmas presents and decorations have been stolen. Cleverly, Dr. Seuss uses the same picture presented at the beginning of the story (when readers first meet the Whos) to show that their spirit has not changed.

The illustrations are in pen and ink, with some red added. This kind of printing was common in 1957, when the book was first published, but it may disappoint modern readers who have seen the animated and/or live-action movie versions and expect full-color illustrations. However, the energy, vitality, and charm of both drawings and verse make this book a treasured American classic.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about holiday customs. What traditions do you look forward to when your celebrate your holiday? Would the holiday be as meaningful if it were stripped of some of the more decorative elements?

Book details

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