Sunday, September 08, 2013

How to Train a Train (2013)

How To Train a Train. Jason Carter Eaton. Illustrated by John Rocco. 2013. Candlewick Press. 48 pages. [Source: Review Copy]

Sometimes a picture book deserves its own post. Such is the case with the oh-so-clever How To Train a Train. Here's how it starts:
So you want a pet train? Well, of course you do! Trains make awesome pets--they're fun, playful, and extremely useful. Lucky for you, this handy guidebook contains everything you need to know to choose, track, and train your very own pet train. Ready? Then let's head out and find some trains!
Are you hooked yet? Curious to see just how far this book goes?!

This book will help you choose the right kind of pet train. It tells you the types of trains available, where they live, what they're like, etc. Then readers learn how to go about obtaining their pet train. My absolute favorite part of this picture book involves the "best way" to catch a train...
First, get up really early in the morning and find a good hiding spot close to some trains. Now the hard part: sit quietly and wait and wait and wait some more. As the sun rises, the trains will begin to stir and start their engines. Watch them work and play...Take your time and choose one that's right for you. Got one? Time to make your move: send a puff of smoke high into the air. Perfect! You've got the train's attention! If you brought any coal with you, now would be the time to offer it... Next make the call of the wild train: Chugga-Chugga, Chugga-Chugga!
Once you own a train, readers will need to name it and learn how to care for it properly! This book is just too much fun! So silly and yet so clever! It's just a joyous book!

I loved, loved, loved the text! And the illustrations are great too!!! One of my favorite illustrations is of the little girl--in dress up (a fairy?)--painting the name "Sparkles" on her train. This isn't the story of one child and his or her own train. It is a story about children everywhere loving trains. I liked that!

Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 4 out of 5
Total: 9 out of 10

© 2013 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


Jason Carter Eaton,  8:09 PM  

I loved, loved, loved your review!!! Thank you, Becky, so happy you enjoyed the read!

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

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