Top 20 picture books for winter

Snowflakes

With the chilly season now in full flow and the nights drawing in, here are some of our favourite wintry picture books to snuggle up and read with the little ones.

  • Winter Sleep: A Hibernation Story

    Author: Sean Taylor and Alex Morss Illustrator: Cinyee Chiu
    Publisher: Words and Pictures
    Interest age: 4-5

    This beautifully illustrated, large-format picture book perfectly blends a sweet story with fascinating facts about animals sleeping through winter. As it’s all about being cosy and sleepy, it makes a lovely bedtime book, but would also work well for schools. 

  • A Dot in the Snow

    Author: Corrinne Averiss Illustrator: Fiona Woodcock
    Publisher: Oxford University Press
    Interest age: 3-6
    Reading age: 5+

    Miki the polar bear cub is bored: mum is fishing on the ice, but he wants to play. He sees a red dot, far in the distance: what could it be?

  • Snowflakes

    Author: Cerrie Burnell Illustrator: Laura Ellen Anderson
    Publisher: Scholastic
    Interest age: 3+
    Reading age: 6+

    Mia has left the noisy city behind, and come to live with her Grandma in a land of forest and snow.

  • The Snow Beast

    Author: Chris Judge
    Publisher: Andersen Press
    Interest age: 3-5

    Somebody has been stealing the friendly snow beast's tools, just when he's about to help the local village put on a snow festival. 

  • My Grandma’s Magic Recipes - Stories and recipes for every season: Winter Warmth

    Author: Ella Phillips Illustrator: Camilla Sucre
    Publisher: Simon and Schuster
    Interest age: 4-5

    Zee is excited to go to Grandma’s Christmas party, and when she gets to Grandma’s delicious-smelling house with Mummy, Daddy and her sister Ree, she goes looking for her. But, the party is busy, and Zee can’t find Grandma anywhere!

  • Lines

    Author: Suzy Lee
    Publisher: Chronicle Books
    Interest age: 6-8

    A winter-themed wordless picture book about a skating girl that is both deceptively simple and completely delightful.

  • Miki

    Author: Stephen Mackey
    Publisher: Hodder Childrens Books
    Interest age: 3+
    Reading age: 5+

    Shimmering like the northern lights, the illustrations' luminous blues and greens glow out of the darkness in this chilly yet elegantly magical wintry tale

  • The Magical Snow Garden

    Author: Tracey Corderoy Illustrator: Jane Chapman
    Publisher: Little Tiger
    Interest age: 3-5

    Wellington Penguin wants to grow a garden - but how can he do that in the snow? A vibrant picture book about how you never know what you can achieve until you try.

  • I Did See a Mammoth!

    Author: Alex Willmore
    Publisher: Farshore
    Interest age: 4-5

    A wonderfully funny picture book about daring to believe the unexpected. A group of explorers have come to the Antarctic to see penguins, but one young explorer discovers something quite different – a great big mammoth! But will anyone believe it?

  • Penguin Problems

    Author: Jory John Illustrator: Lane Smith
    Publisher: Walker Books
    Interest age: 3-6
    Reading age: 5+

    A little penguin is out in the cold, and he doesn’t like it: the sun is too bright, the ocean is too salty, and he’s tired of whales and orcas trying to hunt him. A sweet and tongue-in-cheek story about remembering all the good things in our lives.

  • It's Snow Day

    Author: Richard Curtis Illustrator: Rebecca Cobb
    Publisher: Puffin
    Interest age: 4-9
    Reading age: 7+

    This must-read winter picture book is crammed with fabulously joyful and expressive illustrations and will be loved by young and old alike.

  • Little Princess: I Want Snow

    Author: Tony Ross
    Publisher: Andersen Press
    Interest age: 3-6
    Reading age: 5+

    When the Queen sends a postcard from the South Pole, the Little Princess decides that she wants snow RIGHT NOW - but it's the middle of summer. A funny, charming addition to the Little Princess series.

  • The Woodcutter and the Snow Prince

    Author: Ian Eagleton Illustrator: Davide Ortu
    Publisher: Owlet Press
    Interest age: 4-5

    Kai the lonely woodcutter meets the cursed Snow Prince – but can they ever be friends?

  • The Storm Whale in Winter

    Author: Benji Davies
    Publisher: Simon & Schuster
    Interest age: 4-6
    Reading age: 5+

    The follow up to Benji Davies' The Storm Whale, this atmospheric story about friendship and family is perfect for cosy winter bedtimes.

  • Brrrr: A Book of Winter

    Author: Il Sung Na
    Publisher: Meadowside Children's Books
    Interest age: 3+
    Reading age: 5+

    When snow falls on the ground, and all the trees are bare, everything changes ... including the white rabbit!

  • Walking in a Winter Wonderland

    Author: Tim Hopgood
    Publisher: Oxford University Press

    The words to the famous Christmas song by Peggy Lee are given new life in this beautiful new picture book by Tim Hopgood - and children (and grown ups) can sing along with the singalong CD included in the book, too.

  • The Not-So-Perfect-Penguin

    Author: Steve Smallman
    Publisher: QED
    Interest age: 2+
    Reading age: 6+

    Big, lively illustrations and a simple message make this book ideal for classroom circle times. Points for discussion are included at the back.

  • Robin's Winter Song

    Author: Suzanne Barton
    Publisher: Bloomsbury
    Interest age: 3-7
    Reading age: 6+

    A beautifully illustrated story about the changing seasons.

  • Snow Bear

    Author: Tony Mitton Illustrator: Alison Brown
    Publisher: Bloomsbury
    Interest age: 3-5

    A small bear is searching for a winter home. Everywhere he tries is occupied, until he finds a cottage inhabited only by one small girl, who welcomes him inside.

  • When it Snows

    Author: Richard Collingridge
    Publisher: David Fickling Books
    Interest age: 3+
    Reading age: 5+

    A little boy follows footprints in the snow until he finds a polar bear who leads him to the place where the snowmen live.