Do You Want to Build an Abominable Snowman? Picture Books about Yetis Are a Cool Trend

In terms of reputation, they’ve always been a little on the outskirts. They lack the notoriety of Bigfoot, the oddness of the chupacabra, the coyness of Nessie. But for whatever reason, this elusive cryptid has experienced a recent surge in popularity—especially when illustrated as a snuggly winter friend. Below, find a collection of picture books featuring yetis, all published in the last year.

Are We There, Yeti? by Ashlyn Ansteearewethereyeti

A group of kids is on a bus trip, and the driver is a yeti. Impatient and squirmy, the kids ask again and again, “Are we there, Yeti?” but Yeti only answers, “Not yet!” as he drives on—until they reach their surprise destination. Speech bubbles and blocky cartoon-like illustrations done in gouache capture the rambunctious children, and Yeti is a crudely-drawn hero, sketched in off-white with big teeth and lots of personality.

Dear Yeti, by James Kwandearyeti

Two young hikers communicate with Yeti via written notes delivered by a helpful bird. Through spare text and lighthearted illustrations, the boys alert Yeti that they’re searching for him, that they’re friendly, and that he shouldn’t be shy. Yeti keeps careful watch during their adventures, eventually leaving a note of his own: “See you soon. Love, Yeti.”

No Yeti Yet, by Mary Ann Frasernoyetiyet

“It’s a perfect day for a yeti hunt!” say two siblings, and off they go into the wilderness to photograph a yeti. The younger boy drills his brother with questions, particularly about whether or not they are getting close. The older brother patiently responds, “Nope. No yeti yet.” All the while, the yeti—a big, not even remotely scary creature—lurks, watching the clueless boys throughout their excursion. All ends well over cocoa, and the boys get their photo: a yeti selfie.

The Snow Beast, by Chris Judgesnow beast

As a mountain village prepares for its winter festival, the inhabitants discover that all their tools have gone missing—and they suspect the local “abominable Snow Beast” is the culprit. From atop the mountain, the friendly (non-Snow) Beast from Judge’s The Lonely Beast (2011) sets out to solve the mystery. When he finally meets up with the Snow Beast, it turns out they have a lot in common; back at the village, the Snow Beast is forgiven, and his unusual home is used to celebrate the winter festival.

The Thing about Yetis, by Vin Vogelthing about yetis

“The thing about yetis is that yetis love winter.” And they make it seem hard not to: adorable, fluffy yetis spend the first few pages having an absolutely terrific time. They slide down hills, drink hot chocolate, build snow castles (and then play Godzilla), and make themselves into snowmen. But not even a yeti loves winter all the time. The hot chocolate runs out, the snow makes their fur dry out all poofy, and sometimes summer seems just a little more fun. Never fear, though! There are always ways to recreate summer, even on the coldest of days.

Yeti and the Bird, by Nadia Shireenyetiandbird

Poor Yeti—a great hulking mountain of long, white hair with a teensy face—is the single most fearsome creature in the forest. None of the other creatures dare come close, so when a hapless bright orange bird lands—“THUNK!”—on his head and doesn’t seem scared at all, Yeti is happy to have finally found a friend. But Yeti’s bird friend won’t be able to stand the harsh mountain winter, so Yeti has to say good-bye. The other animals have seen the softer side of Yeti, however, and they spend the winter playing games and singing songs with the creature until Bird returns in the spring.



About the Author:

Maggie Reagan works for Booklist as an associate editor in the Books for Youth department. In addition to the required love of reading, she is also an adventure junkie, animal hugger, and stringed-instrument enthusiast. Follow her on Twitter @MagdalenaRayGun.

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