The Wind In The Willows – Kenneth Grahame

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The Wind In The Willows is a book that was written by Kenneth Grahame in 1908, and like so many other famous children’s books, it was inspired by the bedtime stories he told his son.

His son, Alastair, was born prematurely, and he struggled with health problems his entire life. Kenneth Grahame would tell Alistair bedtime stories while he was at home and when he was away he would send letters with more stories.

These stories would become The Wind In The Willows as we know it today. Share these wonderful bedtime stories with your kids by downloading our free The Wind In The willows PDF Book here.

The Wind In The Willows PDF Book

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Is The Wind In The Willows PDF Free To Download?

Yes, it is! Kenneth Grahame published the Wind In The Willows story in 1908 so it is now in the public domain. It is therefore completely free to download and read. We hope you enjoy it!

The Wind In The Willows PDF Q&A

The Wind In The Willows Characters

There are four main characters in The Wind In The Willows book: Mole, Rat, Toad and Badger. They are joined by a few other wonderful characters to create the vibrant and colorful world imagined by Kenneth Grahame.


Mole is a loveable, loyal character who, until the beginning of The Wind In The Willows book, had never left his underground home. When he finally decides to leave and go outside, he meets Rat, who becomes one of his closest friends. Mole sometimes finds the world a bit crazy and overwhelming, and although he is often a bit scared, he grows into a strong and brave character.


Rat, who is also called ratty, is very kind and he likes to see the best in everyone. He becomes very good friends with Mole and takes care of him especially when Mole feels overwhelmed or confused by the world. Rat invites Mole to live with him and becomes a mentor to him.


Toad is a very wealthy aristocrat who is very jovial and good-natured. He enjoys every new fad or trend that comes around and gets himself into trouble often! Although Toad is very frivolous, he has a great love for his friends and the other characters in The Wind In The Willows book.


Badger is quiet and reserved and enjoys a peaceful, solitary life. Badger is a very loyal and brave character.


Although not a central character in the story, Otter does appear in a few chapters in which he joins the adventures of the four main characters. He is the father of Portly, who only appears in chapter 7 of the book.


Pan is a demigod taken from Greek mythology. Pan rescues Otter’s son, Portly, in Chapter 7.

In ancient Greek religion and mythology, Pan is the god of the wild, shepherds and flocks, rustic music and impromptus, and companion of the nymphs. He has the hindquarters, legs, and horns of a goat, in the same manner as a faun or satyr. With his homeland in rustic Arcadia, he is also recognized as the god of fields, groves, wooded glens and often affiliated with sex; because of this, Pan is connected to fertility and the season of spring.

Wikipedia | Pan (God)

The Jailer’s Daughter

The Jailer’s daughter becomes friends with Toad when he is in prison. She helps him escape from prison by disguising him as a washerwoman.

The Weasels and Stoats

The Weasels and the stoats take over Toad Hall when Toad is in jail. They come from the Wild Wood and are led by Chief Weasel.

The Wind In The Willows Plot Summary

In this wonderful bedtime story, we are introduced to Mole, Rat, Toad and Badger. These four animals are the main characters in the Wind In The Willows book.

At the beginning of the story, spring has arrived and the weather is lovely! Mole has some spring cleaning to do and like most of us, he just can’t bring himself to do it! He decides to leave the cleaning in favor of exploring the outside world even though he has never really ventured outside before. Here he meets Rat, or Ratty, and the two of them become great friends. They spend lots of time boating together and spending time on the river.

Ratty is a wonderful friend to Mole and the other animals in the story. He is friendly and kind and takes mole under his wing, especially when Mole feels a little overwhelmed by the world outside his underground home.

One day Ratty takes Mole to meet Toad. Toad is a happy, good-natured fellow who is also very rich. He lives a life of luxury in a grand old house called Toad Hall. Toad loves having fun and he becomes obsessed with every new fad that comes along! His current obsession is the automobile which he loves for its excitement and speed.

The fourth character in the story is good old Badger. Badger is quiet and reserved and he doesn’t see his friends all that often. He really doesn’t like the frivolous type of life that Toad leads and prefers to spend time on his own.

One cold wintery day, Mole decides that he would like to go and visit Badger. However, Rat is sleeping so Mole decides to venture out on his own. Very quickly Mole discovers that he is lost and that there are many scary creatures in the woods that aren’t very friendly. He hides in the roots of a tree hoping that his friend will save him!

When Rat wakes up he realizes that Mole is gone so he immediately goes out to find him. The weather, however, is terrible and when he eventually finds Mole they can’t find their way home. They make their way to Badger’s house where he welcomes them with open arms.

Once all warmed up, Rat and Mole tell Badger about all Toad’s adventures and how much trouble he has been getting himself into by crashing several cars, going to the hospital and spending a fortune on fines. They decide there and then that they will help Toad as soon as Spring arrives.

Once Spring arrives the friends decide to place Toad under house arrest to try to protect him from himself. However, Toad manages to escape and steals a car! He ends up in jail where he makes friends with the jailer’s daughter who decides to help him escape. When he is finally rescued by Rat, he finds out that his home, Toad Hall has been taken over by weasels and stoats. The friends however know of a secret tunnel into Toad Hall and they manage to sneak in and evict the trespassers.

On their victory, Toad holds a big banquet to celebrate! He goes on to find and repay everyone he has wronged in the past. And they lived happily ever after 🙂

What Is The Moral Of The Wind In The Willows Book?

Friendship is one of the biggest themes in The Wind In The Willows. Although all the animals are loyal, caring, kind, and supportive of each other, it is Toad who probably grows the most in this respect – even though he is very wealthy, he realizes that his friends are the most valuable things he has in his life.

What Reading and Grade Level Is The Wind In The Willows?

Generally, children from about the age of 6 enjoy the story of The Wind In The Willows. If you would like your child to read the story on their own then it would be good for children from about grade 8.

Is There A The Wind Of The Willows Movie?

There are quite a few movies that have been made that are based on The Wind In The Willows – Wikipedia lists 10 in total! One of the most popular, however, was released in 1995. It is a combination of both live-action and animated scenes.

The Wind In The Willows | 1995


The Wind In The Willows is a wonderful bedtime story to share with older children. You can download a free copy of The Wind In The Willows PDF book here to share with your children.

More Free Children’s PDF eBooks To Download And Enjoy:
Winnie The Pooh
Little Red Riding Hood
My Father’s Dragon
The Three Little Pigs Story
Alice In Wonderland
The Velveteen Rabbit