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The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler…
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Showing 1-5 of 45 (next | show all)
This very gentle, early-reader Robinsonade was intensely memorable for me as a child, and is still charming today, judging by my 6yo's enjoyment of it. Four orphaned children who are on their on, running from a grandfather they believe to be cruel, find an abandoned boxcar and make it their home. They find a dump (oh, the days when people just started dumping crap in random places) and trashpick a kettle, and pitchers and plates and a cup, and make a soup ladle. They build a stone firepit, adopt a dog by picking a thorn from his paw, and dam up a small pool for bathing. The hard-working older brother brings home enough spare cash to provide butter, the girls figure out how to keep milk and butter cold in a rock in a pool -- it's all completely precious.

Anyway, of course it ends happily, and my 6yo seemed quite satisfied with the happy ending.

As an adult, I noticed many interesting strands that I didn't pick up on in my childhood -- the baker & her husband who didn't like children, but would have been happy to "keep" them for child labor! The wealthy grandfather who was a mill owner, but paid for a big town race once a year. Might be fun to read a socialist realistic retelling of The Boxcar Children. The gender roles of the two older siblings were notable too, although they were more matter-of-fact and less annoying than in some more modern works.

This time around, I read a "60th anniversary" edition which included a brief biography of Gertrude Chandler Warner, and a lot of photos. It mentioned she'd written The Boxcar Children originally in 1924, but the version which has been reprinted so many times is the illustrated version published in 1942. Who knew?

Anyway, the book was delightful, and I'm pleased to have had the experience with Ada. I was never that into the books after this first one, when the kids are living the high life with their rich granddad, but the first one I read over and over. ( )
  lquilter | Jan 23, 2015 |
My kids really enjoyed this one, possibly even more than they enjoyed the two Laura Ingalls Wilder books we've tried. They have the same detail that kids find fascinating, but without all the boring bits of exhaustive detail. Add in gentle bits of suspense and nice sibling relationships, and this was a winner. ( )
  CherieDooryard | Jan 20, 2015 |
"This is my pink cup!" Yes it is, Benny. Very cute story. ( )
  CallMeChristina | Mar 23, 2014 |
Another fine chapter book to read aloud to young listeners. The old time feel and pace of this book was just right. There is a slight mystery that occurs that my 5 year old did not really pick up on - but certainly did not detract from the book. Some old wording that was not updated in our copy but a swift parent could easily modernize while reading. A feel good happy ending story - we will certainly read book 2.

Just went and read some other reviewers - wow some harsh critique out there. I agree with another poster who reminds us all that this a book from the past of course there are gender stereotypes and scenarios that seem unrealistic in modern times...but should we just throw out all the books that do not directly relate to modern times? I think literature is one of the greatest ways to help children relate to a time and place they will never be apart of. ( )
  dms02 | Feb 27, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 45 (next | show all)
An impeccable production of a compelling story...
added by cmwilson101 | editPublisher's Weekly

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gertrude Chandler Warnerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Deal, L. KateIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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One warm night four children stood in front of a bakery.
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ISBNs 1602705860 / 0807528676 / 1453220135 / 0329701819 / 1616412135
are graphic versions of the book.

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Book description
A wonderful children's book...
One warm night four children stood in front of a bakery. No one knew them. NO one knew where they had come from.
Henry, Jessie, Violet, and Benny are a family. They're brothers and sisters - and they're orphans, too. The only way they can stay together is to try and make it on their own. But where will they live?
One night, during a storm, the children find an old red boxcar that keeps them warm and safe. The children decide to make it their home and become The Boxcar Children!
[Personally, I have no idea who the Alden family is - I was hunting for the series I read in 5th grade - The Boxcar Children.]
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0807508527, Paperback)

The Aldens begin their adventure by making a home in a boxcar. Their goal is to stay together, and in the process they find a grandfather.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:39:27 -0400)

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Describes episodes about children who make a boxcar their home.

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