Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Railway Children

The Railway Children (Everyman's Library Children's Classics) The Railway Children by Edith Nesbit

Book 43 of 50 for the New Author Challenge
Book 8 of 25 for the MG Reading Challenge
Book 6 for the Classics Challenge

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I had three hours in the car by myself and decided to download a library audiobook to my ipod for the drive. I didn't realize how limiting my selection was going to be since I was working on my Mac that night instead of a PC. But, I ended up somewhat reluctantly downloading this book. And then I promptly fell in love with it.

The Railway Children (no relation to The Boxcar Children) is a classic children's story that was written in 1906. The tale focuses on three children named Roberta, Peter, and Phyllis who move to the English countryside after their father is taken away. Their proximity to the railway provides them with all kinds of adventures that they never had when they lived in the city. They learn how to make do, make friends, and enjoy the outside world while interacting with the station master, the signalman, the porter, the town doctor, and even a bargeman.

This book would make a fantastic read-aloud. It kind of reminded me of Thomas the Tank Engine, but for older kids (and without talking locomotives and helicopters). It is definitely one of those great "old-fashioned" stories. Even though there were some colloquialisms used that clearly refer to the time the book was written, this is a story that will never go out of style.

I should mention that I wasn't a big fan of the reader of the audiobook. She had fabulous distinct voices for each character, but her English accent left something to be desired. I ended up reading the last half of the book in hardcover and was much less distracted.

Also reviewed by:
Have you read this one? Did you read it as a child?

Source: Library


bermudaonion said...

I've never heard of this one! When I saw the title of your post, I thought it had something to do with the Boxcar Children. It sounds like an interesting books.

CarrieM said...

I love this book. I saw the Masterpiece theater adaptation, and read it right away. I've really become a fan of the author, but this one, grounded in a world without magic, seems especially sweet.

lilly said...

I've never heard of this book. I will have to give it a try one day but I will read it instead of listening. I know how distracting certain narrators can be.

Karenlibrarian said...

I used to confuse it with the Boxcar children also! I've really been into the children's classics lately, and I recently read The Enchanted Castle. I'd like to read one of Nesbit's more realistic books as well.

Terra said...

I've heard of this book but haven't read it. Your review makes me think I would like it.
I think C.S. Lewis liked this author's books, but don't quote me on that. I'd have to look it up!