Synopses & Reviews
Rosemary Wells has written or illustrated more than 120 books for children and has received numerous awards. She is the creator of the beloved Max and Ruby stories; the co-author (with Secundino Fernandez) of MY HAVANA: MEMORIES OF A CUBAN BOYHOOD, illustrated by Peter Ferguson; the author of LINCOLN AND HIS BOYS, illustrated by P.J. Lynch; and the illustrator of MY VERY FIRST MOTHER GOOSE, edited by Iona Opie. She lives in Greenwich, Connecticut.
Bagram Ibatoulline has illustrated many acclaimed books for children, including THUMBELINA, retold by Brian Alderson; THE MIRACULOUS JOURNEY OF EDWARD TULANE and GREAT JOY, both by Kate DiCamillo; THE ANIMAL HEDGE by Paul Fleischman; Hans Christian Andersens THE TINDERBOX and THE NIGHTENGALE, both retold by Stephen Mitchell; THE SERPENT CAME TO GLOUCESTER by M. T. Anderson; and HANA IN THE TIME OF THE TULIPS by Deborah Noyes. He lives in Pennsylvania.
"Model trains, time travel, and cameo appearances by Ronald Reagan and Alfred Hitchcock, among others, make this adventure an ideal family read-aloud. 'One day everything in the world was fine. Dad and I had lamb chops and ice cream,' says Oscar Ogilvie, 11, about life with his widowed father in 1929 smalltown Illinois. Self-reliant and companionable, Oscar makes dinner so he and his father, a tractor salesman, can spend their evenings constructing elaborate railroad layouts. Then the Great Depression hits, and the Ogilvies lose their house and, worse, their trains, which are put on display in the bank lobby. Oscar's kindness to a laid-off math teacher turns serendipitous when the teacher becomes the bank's night watchman, giving Oscar access to his trains. During one after-hours visit, the bank is robbed; Oscar escapes by diving into the model train set, where he crisscrosses time and the continent, unscrambling what's happened to him. Well-drawn secondary characters and evocative details bring the hardscrabble 1930s to life. Ibatoulline's intricately detailed illustrations, both full-page and double-spread, have a Norman Rockwell quality that reinforces the setting and adds a nostalgic air. Ages 10 up. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)