Children's books and book reviews - reading resource for kids, teachers, librarians, parents

Young readers book reviews for ages 8 to 12 years old

The Railway Children
by E. Nesbit, illustrated by C.E. Brock
ages 9-12 240 pages Seastar Books August 2005 Hardcover    

Originally written in 1906, this beautiful story about three children has since become a classic. This beautiful new edition serves to introduce another generation to this delightful tale.

Roberta, Peter, and Phyllis live an idyllic life. They have many servants, toys, and parents who shower them with love and affection. One night, their father is called away, and the children are not told why. Their mother is sad but tells them they must tighten their belts to survive. This means letting the servants go, leaving behind most of their possessions, and moving to a small home in the country, near the railroad tracks.

Although to adults this would seem like a complete downgrade of class, the children make the best of their new situation and make friends in their village. They spend time waving to passengers on the passing trains and even find themselves in the midst of some interesting adventures, such as helping a Russian man find his family and rescuing a hurt young man. But they never forget that they don't know what happened to their father, and the three children set about discovering the answer once and for all.

I don't know how I missed it, but I had never read this book before. The characters are delightful, their adventures are enthralling, and the conclusion is satisfying. I read the book to my two children, ages five and six, not knowing if they would understand or pay attention. They were literally held spellbound and asked again and again for me to read more.

Original black-and-white drawings are included to help readers visualize the scenes from the story. The Railway Children is definitely a book for the keeper shelf, as my daughter has already asked to read it again. The ending had us all crying tears of joy.
Young readers book reviews for ages 8 to 12 years old

click here to browse children's board book reviews
click here to browse children's picture book reviews
click here to browse young readers book reviews
click here to browse young readers book reviews
click here to browse young adult book reviews
click here to browse parenting book reviews
web reviews
  Melissa Parcel/2005 for curled up with a good kid's book  

For grown-up fiction, nonfiction and speculative fiction book reviews,
visit our sister site Curled Up With a Good Book (