Cover image for After the fall (how Humpty Dumpty got back up again)
After the fall (how Humpty Dumpty got back up again)

After fall
After the fall (how Humpty Dumpty got back up again)
First edition.
Publisher Info:
New York, New York : Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings Limited Partnership, [2017]
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 29 cm
After falling off the wall, Humpty Dumpty is very afraid of climbing up again, but is determined not to let fear stop him from being close to the birds.


Call Number
Material Type
E SANT New or Popular Picture Book

On Order



From the New York Times -bestselling creator of The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend comes the inspiring epilogue to the beloved classic nursery rhyme Humpty Dumpty.

Everyone knows that when Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. But what happened after ?

Caldecott Medalist Dan Santat's poignant tale follows Humpty Dumpty, an avid bird watcher whose favorite place to be is high up on the city wall--that is, until after his famous fall. Now terrified of heights, Humpty can longer do many of the things he loves most.

Will he summon the courage to face his fear?

After the Fall (How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again) is a masterful picture book that will remind readers of all ages that Life begins when you get back up .

Author Notes

Dan Santat is a Caldecott Medal-winning and New York Times bestselling author. Writer of many picturebooks, his first picturebook was The Guild of Geniuses.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-Humpty Dumpty, a spindly-limbed pale egg, copes with anxiety after his "Great Fall." Though his shell has mostly healed, a newfound fear of heights prevents him from enjoying his birdwatching, and even from choosing the delicious cereal on the top shelf at the store. But he still yearns for the skies, and Santat employs a variety of striking perspectives to help readers appreciate the enormity of Humpty's isolation and distance from his goal. Determined not to give up his favorite hobby, Humpty builds a model plane-Santat milks the humor of the frustrated, fastidious egg during a design sequence-that soars across the sky. When another, lesser accident occurs, Humpty must conquer his nerves or give up on flying. Santat's straightforward language throughout acknowledges the gravity of Humpty's fears without edging into melodrama; the short, declarative sentences that mark his anxious climb back onto the wall are rousing in their simplicity. (The backlit egg's triumphant posture doubles down on the text.) Many readers might have considered the ascent an adequate end, but Santat indulges in one more high note when the reformed shell cracks anew and releases an exultant bird. VERDICT Santat's precise illustrations and sensitive text combine for more emotional depth than the typical nursery rhyme remix. A terrific redemptive read-aloud for storytime and classroom sharing.-Robbin E. Friedman, Chappaqua Library, NY © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publisher's Weekly Review

What happened to Humpty Dumpty after his great fall? Santat's tale about facing fear imagines a long recovery. Humpty's lofty perch was his favorite: "I loved being close to the birds." But after his accident, he's scared of heights. Caldecott Medalist Santat (The Adventures of Beekle) paints him sleeping on the floor because his bunk bed is too high; sugary cereals on the topmost grocery shelf are sadly out of reach. The story is set in an otherworldly urban cityscape where billboards and telephone lines frame the spreads; emotional lows are underscored with dim shadows, while high moments are filled with warm, golden light. Humpty finds some consolation in making and flying paper airplanes, but when his plane sails over his wall, he resolves to scale it. Santat places viewers right behind Humpty during his moment of triumph, allowing them to share in it. When fear is conquered, we don't just endure the experience, Santat contends; we become new beings. More than a nursery rhyme remix, Santat's story speaks boldly to the grip of fear and trauma, and to the exhilaration of mastering it. Ages 4-8. Agent: Jodi Reamer, Writers House. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

*Starred Review* Thanks to modern medicine, Humpty does get put back together again. But he's a shell of his former self: the trauma leaves him afraid of heights, and so, unable to watch the birds from his old vantage. Searching for a rewarding alternative, he crafts a wonderful flying bird from paper that immediately gets stuck atop the very wall from which he fell. What to do? Santat depicts his rotund narrator with mobile, expressive features, and places him in a sparely detailed urban setting. Lighting and visual cues (including a truly heartbreaking view of grocery shelves on which the bright, enticing cereal packages are on high shelves and only drab brands like Flax and Sad Clown are in reach) communicate the depressed Dumpty's emotional landscape effectively. Ultimately, Humpty screws his courage to the sticking place and scales the wall. No sooner does he realize that his fear is gone than he starts to crack and, with an apotheosis that soars literally as well as figuratively, reminds us what eggs are for. The author gives wings to both his protagonist and his message about the importance of getting back up after a fall, and the realization that recovering from a trauma takes time.--Peters, John Copyright 2017 Booklist