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The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg
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The Polar Express (original 1985; edition 2009)

by Chris Van Allsburg

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4,2712461,161 (4.37)34
Member:Erin330
Title:The Polar Express
Authors:Chris Van Allsburg
Info:Houghton Mifflin (2009), Edition: 1st, Hardcover, 32 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:Christmas, Caldecott, picture book, adventure

Work details

The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg (1985)

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» See also 34 mentions

English (244)  Japanese (1)  All languages (245)
Showing 1-5 of 244 (next | show all)
neat pictures! How does he make these pictures?! ( )
  kelleyhar | Jul 11, 2014 |
Caldecott Medal winner. ( )
  root.katy | Jun 9, 2014 |
The Polar Express is about a boy who hops on a train and gets to open the first present at Christmas.He asked for a silver bell, but it slipped out of his robe and he lost it. I like this book, because it is about the true spirit of Christmas. I also like it because it involves kids learning through their own adventure, rather than just having plain old words on plain old paper. if you like stories about Christmas and kids you'll like this one. ( )
  EGeraci | May 30, 2014 |
It's such a classic, and for a good reason. In what seems like few words, Van Allsburg creates an incredible and creative holiday story of a boy traveling on a mysterious train to the north pole. It is there where he is offered the first gift of Christmas from Santa Claus himself. This book can create some great classroom discussions about what they would have chosen, why the boy chooses a reindeer bell, what it means that he's the only one that can hear it, etc. The illustrations are beautiful, although I do wonder why they all lean towards a darker color scheme. Regardless, it's an original and timeless children's story. ( )
  ghelmus | May 25, 2014 |
The Polar Express is a wonderful story that will captivate the mind of all audiences, especially those children who believe in Santa Clause. I love this book for two reasons. The first reason is the imaginary aspect that it brings to the reader’s mind. The entire story is a wonderful tale that paints a story through its language. The text is very descriptive and includes lines such as “The mountains turned into hills, the hills to snow-covered plains. We crossed a barren desert of ice…” With text like this, the readers are engaged and using their imagination to their fullest. I could even use this book in the classroom and have children create their own holiday story. The second reason I enjoyed this book was for its illustrations. The book has a Caldecott Award and when you read it, it feels as if you are in the story because of the life-like drawings. Overall, the big idea of this book is to tell a magical and classic Christmas tale to readers. ( )
  ckelly16 | May 11, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 244 (next | show all)
Mr. Van Allsburg works effectively combining the sinister and the sentimental, but it would take a poet-sociologist to explain precisely why these dark, moody sculptural pastels somehow evoke feelings of glad tidings and joy.
 
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To Karen
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On Christmas Eve, many years ago, I lay quietly in my bed.
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"Soon there were no more lights to be seen. We traveled through cold, dark forests, where lean wolves roamed and white-tailed rabbits hid from our train as it thundered through the quiet wilderness."
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0395389496, Hardcover)

One couldn't select a more delightful and exciting premise for a children's book than the tale of a young boy lying awake on Christmas Eve only to have Santa Claus sweep by and take him on a trip with other children to the North Pole. And one couldn't ask for a more talented artist and writer to tell the story than Chris Van Allsburg. Allsburg, a sculptor who entered the genre nonchalantly when he created a children's book as a diversion from his sculpting, won the 1986 Caldecott Medal for this book, one of several award winners he's produced. The Polar Express rings with vitality and wonder. 25th Anniversary Edition Includes To commemorate this special anniversary, a lavish gift edition has been created. The set includes a silver foil border, a CD audio recording read by Liam Neeson, a note from Chris Van Allsburg, and a silvery keepsake "All Aboard" ornament.

Amazon Exclusive: A Letter from Chris Van Allsburg Dear Amazon Readers, Over the past twenty-five years, many people have shared stories with me about the effect that reading The Polar Express has had on their families and on their celebration of Christmas. One of the most poignant was told to me five or six years ago at a book signing in the Midwest, on a snowy December evening. As I inscribed a book to a woman in her sixties, she told me that it was the second copy she had owned, and wanted to know if she could she tell me what had happened to the first. "Of course," I answered. A dozen years earlier the woman, who had no children of her own, befriended a neighbor, a boy of about seven, named Eddie. He would often cross his driveway to visit her. She had a collection of picture books, which she read to him, but around the holidays, the only story he ever wanted to hear, over and over, was The Polar Express. One year she offered to give him the book, but Eddie declined because he wanted to hear her read it aloud to him, which she continued to do every year until the boy and his family moved away. Years later the woman learned from a mutual acquaintance that Eddie had grown up and become a soldier. He was stationed in Iraq. Since Christmas was approaching, the woman decided to send him a gift box. She included candy, cookies, socks, and her old copy of The Polar Express. She wasn't sure what a nineteen-year-old battle-weary soldier would do with the book in an army barracks in the Middle East, but she wanted him to have it. A month later, after the holidays had passed, she received a letter from Eddie. He told her he was very happy to have heard from her and to get the box of gifts. He had opened it in his barracks, just before curfew, with some of his fellow GIs already in their bunks. A soldier in the next bunk spotted the book. He knew it well from his own childhood and asked Eddie to read it. "Out loud?" he asked. "Yeah," his buddy told him. Eddie, quietly and a little self-consciously, read The Polar Express. When he'd finished and closed the book, a moment of silence passed. Then from behind him a voice called out, "Read it again," and another joined in, "Yeah, read it again," and a third added, "This time, louder." So Eddie did. He wrote to the woman that he'd stood up and read it to his comrades just the way he remembered she had read it to him. All aboard, Chris Van Allsburg

Recipes and Activities to Celebrate the 25th Anniversary of The Polar Express
(Click on Images for the Recipe or Activity [PDF])

Snacks for Santa Candy Cane Sugar Cookies Polar Chocolate Nougat Caramel Squares Christmas Snowball Cookies Hot Chocolate Fun and Games A Polar Express Word Search A Polar Express Crossword A Polar Express Maze A Polar Express Drawing Sheet

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:24:36 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

A magical train ride on Christmas Eve takes a boy to the North Pole to receive a special gift from Santa Claus.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

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