Thomas' Snowsuit


Contains Illustrations
ISBN 0-920303-32-3





Illustrations by Michael Martchenko
Reviewed by Adele Ashby

Adele Ashby was the former editor of Canadian Materials for Schools and Libraries.


The front cover warns of what is to come: a dishevelled mother, one sneaker on, the other on top of the sofa, a room that looks as if it has been ransacked, and boy with defiance written all over his face. Thomas’s mother buys him “a nice brown snowsuit.” His reaction? “That is the ugliest thing I have ever seen in my life.” Each time mother, teacher, or principal tries to bring Thomas and his snowsuit together, war is declared. At one point, “the principal was wearing the teacher’s dress, the teacher was wearing the principal’s suit and Thomas was still in his underwear.” Just when there seems to be no solution to the problem, ‘Thomas finds the perfect (perhaps the only) motivation, and he climbs into the suit of his own accord. The principal “moved to Arizona where nobody ever wears a snowsuit.”

It is obvious that Robert Munsch actually tells his stories (as opposed to simply writing them). Thomas’ Snowsuit is perfect storytelling material. There is not a single excess word. But it may well be best enjoyed in this format, as a read-aloud, shared by an enthusiastic adult and a receptive child (or even other adults!), who can appreciate not only the story but also the hilarious illustrations by Michael Martchenko, who both complements and extends it. Once again, Munsch chronicles, with great success, a small victory in the unequal battle between adults and children.


Munsch, Robert, “Thomas' Snowsuit,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed June 21, 2024,