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Freight Train by [Crews, Donald]
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Freight Train Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 276 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Presented in blocks of brilliant colors, the multihued train in this Caldecott Honor book undertakes a dazzling journey before disappearing from the final page. Ages 2-up.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

REVIEWS - "You don't have to like trains to love this simple and witty book. Trundling down the track goes a typical freight train, made beautiful by its bright colours, from the red guard's van through to the black tender and steam engine. Bold and clear, the colours stand out, until the train gathers speed and they are all whirled together as it hurtles through tunnels, over bridges, through night and day until, as trains do, it disappears. Nothing is said, nothing needs to be said; it's just a very satisfying experience. And a good introduction to colours, too." -- THE GUARDIAN (Best Books of the Year, best children's books for giving), Julia Eccleshare. "Bold and modern illustrations reflect a simple poetic narrative that will captivate little train lovers. Each rail wagon is a bright colour (green cattle truck, purple fruit van), which start to blur as the engine speeds through tunnels and into the night. Very stylish." -- JUNIOR MAGAZINE. "A richly rewarding first picture book, this is a most welcome reissue."-- Rosemary Stones, BOOKS FOR KEEPS, Best Children's Books of the Year"A simple seeming book which is a wonderful way of introducing colour and colour mixing to children. The brightly coloured trucks steam along and as they gather speed, travelling through tunnels, past cities and over bridges, the colours blend until finally the train disappears. Few words are needed as the pictures speak for themselves. Encourage your child to use his imagination to tell stories based on the book. Simple and amazingly effective." -- PARENTS IN TOUCH"At first sight this seems like a very simple picture book with just the depiction of a steam enging pulling freight trucks carrying petrol, grain, cattle, coal and fruit. It is the striking colours of each carriage that createes a sense of excitment and movement as the train picks up speed and passes through tunnels, past cities, across bridges, into darkness and back into daylight, finally disappearing from view leaving only a thin trail of steam. Originally published in the United States in 1978, it remains a great way of introducing young readers to colours, but especially the way that they merge like a film fast-forwarding.Lacking any narrative, it displays the excitement of a high speed locomotive rushing past our eyes, as we ponder where such a dazzling machine is heading." -- CAROUSEL MAGAZINE"In this brilliantly simple picture book graphics have been inventively used to bring the toddler the excitement of seeing a freight train rush past...A barrier breaker, this."CHILDREN'S BOOKS OF THE YEAR, 1979"Donald Crews', Freight Train, completely embodies the ideal young children's picture book.The book combines simplicity with wonder, boldness with soft edges, and tranquility with excitement.It was due to all of these characteristics and many others that this children's book received the Caldecott Medal in 1979. [...]Donald Crews artwork is both simple and intricate all at the same time, just like his text. The colors are infectious and the range of textures used is very appealing. Some of the illustrations are clean and straight lined, while others show action and movement through blurred and smudged edges. I really think that this makes the reader feel as if they are moving along with the train and seeing what the train is seeing.I like that the different cars represent different colors, which allows the children to connect colors to the matching words.[...] I would highly recommend this book to any preschool teacher, new parent, or anyone else dealing with young children. I think that the book's features are most appropriate for very young readers and will definitely spark an interest in books. The book is available in hardcover, paperback, and more recently, board book format. It would be a great addition to any young child's book collection!" -- Abby Lester, review on Neely's News, 2011"The illustrations are wonderful. The colors of the train are clear, but it is the motion of the train that dazzled me." -- GOODREADS. "This has been my youngest son's favorite book for 5 years. The illustrations get you so close-up to a freight train - you can see the rivets! -- and once the train starts rolling, we make chugga-chugga noises as we turn the pages. The illustration of the train in motion is a thing of beauty. This book is so much fun." -- Amazon.com

Product Details

  • File Size: 1068 KB
  • Print Length: 24 pages
  • Publisher: Greenwillow Books; Reissue edition (August 23, 2011)
  • Publication Date: August 23, 2011
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007O0MR8M
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #307,757 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
With a few words and the most marvellous illustrations, Freight Train will take your child on a magical journey. Each page features a different part of the freight train in a bright color. Then the whole train moves through the countryside, faster and faster until the colors start to blur from the speed.
Several things make this simple book so effective. First, the bright colors are identified to help preschoolers learn them. Next, the different cars on the train are given names, so young engineers will recognize them when they see a real freight train. They are introduced to the engine and tender (in hard-working black), a hopper car, a tanker car, a flat car, and so on all the way to the red caboose in back.
Best of all, these are not simplistic little kid pictures. What I think makes this book so appealing is how detailed the train cars are. Every little rivet and brake hose is visible in these pictures despite the bright colors. I think our little engineers recognize that this is a REAL TRAIN BOOK even if the words are large and the sentences brief. I saw my son studying each car so intently, looking at all those little parts. Crews' drawings are absolutely remarkable, and our kids recognize QUALITY.
I can honestly tell you to buy this one sight unseen for your young train-lovers (ages 2-5).
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Format: Board book
My 16-month-old son loves trains, and we have read many train books. Freight Train is his favorite (and has been his favorite book for the last two months). The illustrations are spare and clear, use primary colors, and have enough detail that my son finds some new train hardware to point at each time we read the book. As the train moves, its different-colored cars blur together for a nice visual effect.
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Format: Board book
This book has short phrases on each page, and the entire story reads like a non-rhyming poem. I believe that the rhythm of the verses, along with the clear bright illustrations, is what drew my son to this book, even at 10 months old. For his 3rd birthday recently, I made train decorations based on the illustrations in Freight Train. He still enjoys the book and now "reads" it to himself. Preschoolers can easily memorize this wonderful book.
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Format: Board book Verified Purchase
Simple text describes 4 different types of freight cars, the caboose, the tender and the steam engine. The six basic colors plus black are used for each car and therefore this is an ideal way to teach colors to the little train-lover. Very fast read and my son pleads me to read it again. I don't mind, as this is not aggravating in any way (as some of the board books are). Sturdy board book construction. Great book!
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By A Customer on March 26, 1998
Format: Board book
My son got this book for Christmas, because I was so tired of hauling it back and forth to and from the library. There's something about the structure of the book that just mesmerizes him--I think it might be the transition from knowledge and understanding of colors and the names of the cars, to movement of the train through the countryside. It may be a boy thing--he's never cared for the highly verbal books his sister enjoyed so much, but wants this book over and over and over and over. One bonus is that it's relatively short, and appealing enough that I don't mind how often I've had to read it. I highly recommend this book, particularly for parents of preschool boys.
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Format: Board book Verified Purchase
When this book first arrived, I had a WTF moment of "what is this? how am I supposed to read this to my kid and make it meaningful?" As a result of my lack of imagination, I didn't read it to my son very often, but eventually he started requesting it, and I was forced to reimagine what reading a book out loud means. The illustrations are simple, so we can't spend a lot of time pointing out small details. There are very few words on each page--truly just a handful throughout, so it's not about the text. Instead, I read the book with sound effects--mimicking the sound of the train slowly chugging on the tracks and speeding up. The tunnel, bridge and city portions have a different sound too, especially the city where the train must blow its horn over and over again to warn city dwellers that the train is passing through, and as the train speeds through the night and to its destination, I modulate my tone and my sound effects become softer and softer until we work up to the "Gone" which I say in a whisper. My son loves the overall effect of the pictures with my sound effects, and he gets very excited about reading the book. I have come to love it as well because I can be imaginative in my delivery and build an overall emotional/tonal experience for my son. This book isn't for everyone, but we like it a lot at our house.
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Format: Board book
This is a simple presentation of the different cars on a freight train, with rhythmic text describing each car. It's a better board book than picture book, because for toddlers the bright colors and simple lines are very pleasing, but it might not hold the interest of older readers. This is good for the transition from looking at pictures to understanding stories, especially if the young reader can have exposure to a real train.
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Format: Board book
**A word of warning: Don't order from the first page that comes up when you search for Freight Train on Amazon. It looks like the regular book, but you're actually getting the "Mulberry Big Book." If you just click through and buy, you wind up with a giant, cheap paperback the size of a standard Pack & Play. It's huge. Amazon would not let me return what I ordered, and I'm really annoyed. I guess it's my fault because I wasn't careful enough (I'm usually pretty savvy, but this time I thought I was ordering the large sized board book). The giant book is completely useless to me. The library won't let me donate it. I can't wrap it to give as a gift without using a whole roll of paper and locating a stiff cardboard backing. It can't be mailed. It won't fit in a suitcase. My toddler doesn't recognize it as a book. There's no good place to store it. It's easily damaged. Right now, it's under the bed while I try and figure out what to do with it. Argh! Very aggravating, especially since I ordered it as a gift to arrive the day of a first birthday and had to run out to the Borders at the last minute to get a standard copy.**

HOWEVER - we also have Freight Train as a board book, and that's what gets the five star review. I would give it a million stars if I could. When I was nine, I had this book memorized. My toddler brother made me and my sister read it to him again and again.... and again, and again, and again. Now my brother, sister, and I are parents, and all of our kids adore this book. My 18-month-old always asks for "Fate Tain". Her two-year-old cousin does the toddler freakout dance of joy whenever someone pulls his copy off the shelf. It is the best young toddler book I know of, hands down.

Crossing trestles!
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