Since Christmas comes but once a year, you would not expect an author's best selling books to be based around the holiday season. It is far more likely that stories that can be read all year round will make far more sales. But that is not the case for Raymond Briggs, who is most well known for his two children's picture books - one of which does not even have any words.
His graphic novel, Father Christmas was published in 1973, and is far removed from the jolly old soul from the North Pole that we are all familiar with. Here, Santa is a grumpy old man living on his own, in an ordinary house, grumbling about everything, and enjoying liquor. While humorous for children, perhaps this more human representation allows adults to relate to the character better as well.
The second book, The Snowman, which was published in 1978, has no text, but is beautifully illustrated, and was lovingly immortalised into an animated film in 1982. The story of the little boy who goes flying through the air with his home-built snowman is touching, heartwarming, and heartbreaking.
So loved are these books that every year, a stage play is performed in London. You can see Father Christmas at the Lyric Theatre up until the 4th January. Tickets are £10 for adults and £8 for children. There will also be Messy Play workshops on certain dates. These cost £5 and include crafts and games.
The Peacock Theatre is showing The Snowman until the 5th January and tickets cost between £12-£32.