Winner’s Wednesday: “The Polar Express”

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“‘All aboard,’ the conductor cried out.  I ran up to him.

‘Well,’ he said, ‘are you coming?’

‘Where?’ I asked.

‘Why, to the North Pole of course,’ was his answer.”

The Polar Express

Although it is not exactly winter yet, I chose to review “The Polar Express” by Chris van Allsburg for Winner’s Wednesday because it is a book that I remember loving from my childhood, as well as a beautifully illustrated Caldecott Award Winner.  This picture book has been one of my favorites because of van Allsburg’s ability to capture a child’s joy and wonder that comes from the holiday spirit and the ability to truly believe.  I think that this book does a wonderful job inspiring children to believe, even when others no longer do.

Another reason I love this book is because of the beautiful illustrations.  Van Allsburg’s detailed and lifelike illustrations take up almost the full spread on each page.  These detailed illustrations allow the reader to feel the cold of the snow falling down as the narrator gets onto the Polar Express.  They also allow the reader to see the beauty of the North Pole on a cold winter’s night.  The beautiful images captivate the reader and help the reader to engage in this wonderful holiday story about the gift of believing.  I think this book is excellent for readers ages 4-8.

Reviewed by:  Lindsay Freeland

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