Jack, Frances, and Francess younger brother Harold have been ripped from the world they knew in New York and sent to Kansas on an orphan train at the turn of the century. As the train chugs closer and closer to its destination, the children begin to hear terrible rumors about the lives that await them. And so they decide to change their fate the only way they know how. . . .
They jump off the train.
There, in the middle of the woods, they meet a boy who will transform their lives forever. His name is Alexander, and he tells them theyve arrived at a place most folks cant get to, where they cant get to us, where all children in need of freedom are accepted.” Congratulations!” he says, theyre the first citizens of Wanderville.”
The Aldens begin their adventure by making a home in a boxcar. Their goal is to stay together, and in the process they find a grandfather.
Wendy McClure (WendyMcClure.net) is the author of The Wilder Life: My Adventures in the Lost World of Little House on the Prairie and several other books for adults and children. She is a senior editor at Albert Whitman and Company, where her recent projects include books in the Boxcar Children series. She received an MFA from the Iowa Writers Workshop and has been a contributor to the New York Times Magazine and This American Life. She lives in Chicago with her husband.
April Hamelink, May 28, 2013 (view all comments by April Hamelink)
I am over 50 years old, and this is still one of my favorite children's books, and was my 80 year old mother's favorite book as a child as well. My kids loved it, and I can't wait to introduce my grandkids to it.
deloraglenn, May 28, 2009 (view all comments by deloraglenn)
I, too am 55 years old and read this book when I was in grade school. I am the oldest of five children. We were placed in foster homes when I was nine years old, 3 of us in one home and 2 in another. My mother had always had me help with the children and she said that the reason that we were going into foster care was because I had not done a good enough job doing so. I loved this book so much and have never forgotten the story because while reading the book I would think about how wonderful it would be to get my siblings back together and live the way the children in the story lived. Thank you so much for this book; it was so very comforting to me.
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berry1315a, December 26, 2006 (view all comments by berry1315a)
I am 55 years old and I remember reading the Boxcar Children when I was in grade school. I thought that
Beverly Cleary wrote the books though, I guess over the years I have forgotten. My grandson, who is in the 2nd grade, loves to read, and has the reading level of a 5th
grader. I was telling him about this book and how I thought he would enjoy it, so I am going to buy it for him on his birthday. I am not an avid reader, nor have I ever been, but this one book has always stood out as one of my favorite. I hope that he enjoys it as much as I did.
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