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The Polar Express [Kindle Edition]

Chris Van Allsburg
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (650 customer reviews)

Digital List Price: $12.99 What's this?
Print List Price: $18.95
Kindle Price: $9.48
You Save: $9.47 (50%)

Kindle Fire: Children's Books
Vivid, Full-Color Children's Books with Kindle Text Pop-Up
This book features Kindle Text Pop-Up for reading text over vivid, full-color images when using Kindle Fire or select Kindle Reading Apps. See additional Color Children’s Picture Books with Kindle Text Pop-Up.

Book Description

Since its publication in 1985, Chris Van Allsburg’s holiday classic has sold millions of copies and has come to signify the essential spirit of Christmas for countless readers. 

Readers young and old are sure to treasure this inspiring book, which brings to life the magic of Christmas for all who believe.



Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

One Christmas Eve, a bathrobe-clad boy boards the mysterious Polar Express train on its way to the North Pole. Arriving in the mystical polar city, the boy is thunderstruck when Santa chooses him to be the recipient of the very first gift of Christmas. Shyly, the boy asks for his true heart's desire--one silver bell from the harness of Santa's reindeer. His wish is granted, and the train begins its return trip. But alas! The boy has a hole in his pocket, and the cherished sleigh bell is lost... forever?

Author-illustrator Van Allsburg, who also received the Caldecott Medal for Jumanji and a Caldecott Honor for The Garden of Abdul Gasazi, is a creative talent beyond compare. The timeless splendor of his unique, breathtaking illustrations and quiet story will undoubtedly stay with the reader for a lifetime. (Ages 3 to 8) --Emilie Coulter

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 2-Chris Van Allsburg's Caldecott-winning Christmas classic (HM, 1985) is 15 years old, but it is a timeless story that just keeps getting better. Actor Liam Neeson's authoritative, unhurried narration brings the story to life. Peaceful, unobtrusive orchestrations punctuate the text like falling snow. As the Polar Express pulls into town one Christmas Eve, offering a magical, unforgettable trip to the North Pole, a young boy boards the train. When Santa offers him the first gift of the season, the boy chooses one bell from the harness of a reindeer. On the return trip, the bell is lost, and Christmas for the boy seems to be ruined, until the bell reappears under the Christmas tree, with a mystery of its own, solved only by a belief in the spirit of Christmas. This release won't sit on the shelf long. Parents, teachers, and librarians everywhere will be grateful to have someone else read this tear-jerker in their stead. This well-written, impeccably presented package deserves all the attention it will get.
Kirsten Martindale, Buford Academy, GA
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 17738 KB
  • Print Length: 40 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0618836594
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; 20 Slp Anv edition (October 28, 1985)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006K2WXOI
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,768 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
202 of 209 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Is Santa Claus real? November 1, 2000
Format:Paperback
This book opens the possibility that Santa Claus -- as presented to most of us -- may not physically exist. It does this in a way that will allow children and their parents to ease into that question, a graceful move from the belief in a living St. Nick, to a belief in the spirit of Christmas.
It begins like this: "On Christmas Eve, many years ago, I lay quietly in my bed. I did not rustle the sheets. I breathed slowly and silently. I was listening for a sound -- a sound a friend had told me I'd never hear -- the ringing of Santa's sleigh.
'There is no Santa,' my friend had insisted, but I knew he was wrong."
From here, we follow a beautifully illustrated story of this young boy's quiet night ride with other children, on the Polar Express train to the North Pole, a "huge city standing alone at the top of the world, filled with factories where every Christmas toy was made."
Our narrator is the fortunate child, picked by Santa, to receive the first gift of that Christmas. He knows exactly what he wants, a simple gift that will help him continue to believe in the magic of Christmas, a silver bell from a reindeer's harness.
He gets his wish, but loses it on the train ride home. However, there's a happy ending -- evidently Santa has found the bell, and put it under the tree. The boy and his little sister admire the beauty of the sound it makes, but their parents say, "Oh, that's too bad....It's broken."
Many years later, the boy's sister and all of his friends can no longer hear the bell.
"Though I've grown old, the bell still rings for me as it does for all who truly believe.
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85 of 89 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sophisticated Children's Christmas Book January 9, 2000
Format:Hardcover
My kids love the art and the story is enchanting.
A wonderful train ride full of children who want to believe churns its way to the North Pole and a meeting with Santa. Keeping with traditon, Santa selects one boy to present the first present of Christmas to before he mounts to the sky to visit all the homes of good boys and girls. Rather than ask for a bike, or Pokemon or any other "big" gift, the boy asks for one of Santa's sleigh bells, proof he can hold onto that yes, Santa does exist.
This tale of Christmas belief (in Santa, that is) works well on adults, too. It has a message about belief and wonderment that touch all who want to believe in the magic associated with the gift giving part of Christmas.
Warning, The Polar Express is best for children a little older than mine (5 1/2, 4). It introduces the concept that Santa may not exist. I get around this by not reading two paragraphs in the book, but you should be forwarned if that particular discussion in your household is several years away. (My kids also tell me everytime that the boy in the story should not get on the train at the invitation of a stranger.) At the right age, this is a magical and wonderful Christmas tale of belief.
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57 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Polar Express November 29, 1999
Format:Hardcover
I started reading this book to my children 15 years ago when they were toddlers. I would keep it with my Christmas decorations and bring it out every holiday season. Once they grew too old to be read to, I still brought it out every year and put it on the coffee table. Last year I started reading it to my two-year old son. I still cry with nostaligia each time I read The Polar Express, remembering the magic it held for my older children and how we read it over and over. Well, my second son loved it so much, it never go put away with the Christmas decorations. We read it together constantly, even during the summer! This is a book that never loses its magic -- for children and adults alike. I plan to give this book to my neices and nephews this Christmas.
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and Magical--A Timeless Classic October 17, 2000
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
It is far too easy to express cynicism about Christmas. Likewise, it is far too easy to put down the Christmas season as too commercial. And it is far too easy to dismiss a seasonal gem such as The Polar Express as simplistic and sentimental. But this tale is one of belief, of keeping something which is childlike, not childish, and that just doesn't grow old.
The narrator, a boy, lies awake listening for the sound of the bells on Santa's sleigh, a sound a friend who doesn't believe in Santa Claus says that he won't hear. Indeed, he does not, but what he does hear is even more wonderful and remarkable. He hears the hiss of steam and the squeak of metal, and when he looks out the window, he sees a train outside his house. It is the Polar Express, heading for the North Pole.
Once aboard, he finds that it is full of children, all in their nightclothes. They sing Christmas carols, drink cocoa and eat candies as the train races northward. Finally, they arrive at the North Pole, and the narrator is selected to receive the first gift of Christmas. He asks for, and receives from Santa Claus himself, a silver bell from the sleigh.
Although the boy loses the bell on the way home, kindly Santa returns it to him, and the boy discovers that the bell has a remarkable quality. Only those who still believe in the wonder of Santa and the spirit of Christmas can hear the bell. His friends and his sister eventually cannot hear the bell, but even when he grows up "the bell still rings for [him] as it does for all who truly believe."
The story is accompanied by beautiful pictures that capture the nighttime journey. The author employs somber tones in most of his scenes, speckled with snow and highlighted with starlight and the glowing lights of the train. He captures the cold and mystery of the night, contrasting it with the warm interior scenes.
Every child should own this book. It is a magical story that they can appreciate for the rest of their lives.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A Beautiful Message
The Polar Express, a children’s Christmas tale, written by Chris Van Allsburg winning the 1986 Caldecott medal, inspires the imagination to new heights. Read more
Published 1 day ago by Carter Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Book
I loves this product. The shipping was quick as and described. I would recommend this to anyone who is looking for this item.
Published 6 days ago by Moquita WIney
5.0 out of 5 stars great package deal with cd as well!
Christmas gift for my new granddaughter. Hope she loves it as much as my daughter did when she was young.
Published 10 days ago by Laura R Spignesi
5.0 out of 5 stars My son's favorite!
Our Elf on the Shelf sent this to my little guy - and it was his best surprise from his elf friend over all of our Christmas holiday.
Published 11 days ago by LFC
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best childrens books ever written.
I gave this as a gift to an upcoming birth of a relative. The parents loved receiving the book for the child's library. Read more
Published 11 days ago by Patricia Beard
4.0 out of 5 stars I'm happy
My son loves this book so I purchased it for him. I love the animation, the story, all. Great book and a great purchase!
Published 20 days ago by M. Waddell
5.0 out of 5 stars Purchased for a gift.
the children loved the book - enjoying having their parents read this to them often. This goes along with their DVD.
Published 23 days ago by Judith Hammer
5.0 out of 5 stars We love this book! My son loves to listen to the cd on his cd player...
Wonderful classic. We love this book so much. And I love that it came with the story on cd as well. Read by Liam Neeson. He does a wonderful job.
Published 29 days ago by N. Francis
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice Short book for bed time
Not the full length movie here.....just enough of the Polar Express before night night. Great book for all ages to enjoy.
Published 1 month ago by Just Looking, thank you
4.0 out of 5 stars Awsome
It was nice :-) I loved it sooooooooooooooo much I hope you make more good stories like that.you must be a really good author
Published 1 month ago by GnAwesome
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More About the Author

Chris Van Allsburg is the winner of two Caldecott Medals, for Jumanji and The Polar Express, as well as the recipient of a Caldecott Honor Book for The Garden of Abdul Gasazi. The author and illustrator of numerous picture books for children, he has also been awarded the Regina Medal for lifetime achievement in children's literature. In 1982, Jumanji won the National Book Award and in 1996, it was made into a popular feature film. Chris Van Allsburg was formerly an instructor at the Rhode Island School of Design. He lives in Rhode Island with his wife and two children.

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