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Two Little Trains Paperback – September 23, 2003
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Two trains are heading west. One is streamlined, the other small and old. On their parallel journeys, the trains encounter rivers, hills, snow, and dust storms, but neither is thwarted. But look closer and see that these two trains, though similar in many ways, have a surprising difference: one is the real thing, traversing the countryside, and the other is a toy, making its way across rug fringe "tracks," along the edge of a bathtub, through a tunnel made from a book, and past a broom and dust pan. Brown's brilliant yet simple text and the Dillons' clever and striking pictures, will serve as inspiration to many flights of fancy in young readers' minds. Truly exquisite. (Ages 3 to 6) --Emilie Coulter --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Unlike many picture books, the story told by this one begins on the cover. As we look at this book we see a beautiful sleek silver train resting in a station. Beside it, alongside the track, sit two packed bags and a wrapped present of a toy train. By the time you read the title page the present has been opened (presumably by small hands) and the little train sits silently on the floor awaiting play. Then the words begin. "Two little trains went down the track/ Two little trains went West". On the left hand page sits the grand old silvery sleek train, gearing up to leave the station. On the right hand page you can just barely make out the little toy train as it sits beneath a kitchen chair, readying itself for its journey as well. As the big adult train travels through the countryside, the little toy train does the same, only on a much smaller scale.Read more ›
The trains travel up hills and through tunnels, but always with their goal in mind. The toy train's mission is just as important as the big one, and though "professional" reviewers have quibbled with the absence of a child pushing the toy, I see that as a plus -- when a child plays trains, he is not the engineer or a passenger, but the unseen "deus ex machina."
I suspect this is one of those books that I enjoy more than my kids (5 and 6); they didn't quite "get it", at first, and though my son is interested in trains, this book isn't really about trains in the sense that he enjoys. Though the parallels might be lost on younger children, that age group would probably respond better to the images of trains and scenery -- real and domestic -- that are so eloquently depicted in this book.
ALSO...If your kids like this book, check out Burl Ives' album, "A Twinkle in your Eye," which has a lovely sung/spoken version of this book's verse:
Unlike some of the other reviewers, I believe even young (2 and up) children can understand the parallels between the two train's journeys, even without coaching from their reading partner. "Look, Mommie, the shower is like rain for the toy train!" It is a wonderful vehicle to help children think creatively.
For adults, there are even more rewarding subtleties. For example, if you look at the cover, you note the toy train is wrapped in a gift box sitting atop the luggage on the train platform in front of the real train. The title pages show the box unwrapped before the story begins. In the last two pages of the book, the real train reaches its destination, and the toy train is seen on the floor approaching the bed of a sleeping child. I interepreted this as representing that someone who loved the child - a traveling parent, relative, family friend, etc. - had traveled on the real train to the child's home and brought the toy train as a present for the child.
The two trains cross mountains and rivers, go through dark tunnels, rain and snow storms, and travel long distances to reach their destinations.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Beautiful book! My son loves it. Arrived on time and was packaged with care.Published 6 months ago by Robin Green
Simple story of 2 trains, one real and one toy, that share the same journey. Wonderful to read at night or any time to calm children as the text is very soothing. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Rebecca Meador
This is a fantastic old train book, and my 3.5 y.o. who is a train specialist took to it immediately. Read morePublished on February 4, 2014 by M. Hill
My grandson loves listening to books being read to him. He has heard this one frequently and requested his own copy!Published on January 7, 2014 by Chauncey87
My son is 3 and loves this book! He loves trains so this was an immediate favorite. He already has it memorized. Read morePublished on October 2, 2013 by N. Newsome