Reading, Riding and Railways (& A Giveaway!) - Red Ted Art's Blog : Red Ted Art's Blog

Reading, Riding and Railways (& A Giveaway!)

| April 25, 2012 | 109 Comments

April is Families and Reading Month and very few themes have captured the imaginations of authors and readers alike as much as the railways.

From the talking trains of bed-time stories to the magical trains of children’s books, to the mystery trains of detective novels, there is no question that the railroad, from its earliest beginnings to the present day, has played a special role in fiction.

In the early days of the railroad, trains were both exciting and frightening to many and often embodied the negative aspects of the industrial age.  By the turn of the Century, the public had grown accustomed to the railways and they came to symbolize freedom, opportunity and adventure.   Most recently trains have taken on a dreamlike quality in fiction as supernatural vehicles allowing protagonists to journey to enchanted places.

There are literally thousands of works of fiction in which the railroad features prominently – here are some well-known titles:

Young Children

Older Children


As a testament to the role that trains have played in many great works of fiction over the years, Lionel Trains, the iconic model railroading brand, offers several model trains based on the ones from your favorite books (two of which appear here).  Trains like these provide a great way to inspire your little ones to read.    You and your kids can reflect on the stories from the books you’re reading while reliving them through the action and adventure of your model trains. If you would like to keep up to date with Lionel Trains – they have a wonderful Blog, are on Facebook and Twitter too!

Supporting information:

The Giveaway

Lionel Trains have one Little Lines Polar Express to giveaway! Isn’t it fabulous? Check out the store for more detail information on it!

To enter, all you have to do, is

  • Leave a comment below, telling us what your favourite railway related book is!
For extra entries, you can do the following, be sure to leave a separate comment for each thing you have done!
  • Sharing the post on Facebook with @Lionel LLC in the status
  • Sharing the post on Pinterest with Lionel Trains in the caption
  • Sharing the post on Twitter with @Lionel_LLC in the tweet
* Open to United States residence only.
* Giveaway will close Wednesday 2nd May.
* A winner will be selected via and the decision is final.
* The winner must respond to the winning email within 24hrs of it being sent. Else the prize will go to someone else.


Information and Photos provided courtesy of Lionel L.L.C. All rights reserved.  Sean Gelles of Media Whiz, representing Lionel LLC, and I worked together on this post to provide great, wonderful, and valuable information for Families and Reading Month.

Disclosure: this is paid for content

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Category: Giveaway

Comments (109)

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  1. Great giveaway! My favorite train story is The Little Engine that Could. =) I can be reached at thegoldengleam at gmail dot com

  2. Terri says:

    Oh how lovely! My youngest daughter absolutely loves trains. We love all of the Thomas books and another favorite train book is Chugga Chugga Choo Choo by Kevin Lewis.

  3. Kelly D says:

    My Son & I like The Thomas & Friends “Thomas and the Birthday Party” Book

  4. We love The Little Engine That Could: it’s a classic! Feel free to list your giveaway on our Fabulous Freebies Giveaway Linky…oh wait, see that you did!

  5. Rebecca B. says:

    I’m going to have to say The Polar Express. It’s by far the most sentimental to me and it’s so magical, heading to the North Pole on a train drinking hot chocolate!? Such fun imagery.

  6. Rebecca B. says:

    Pinned: Lionel Trains “Little Lines Polar Express” {giveaway} on my Pinterest account/board.

  7. Neeta Logsetty says:

    Where to begin. I have two boys who are obsessed with trains! The Polar Express is a favourite year round – not just at Christmas.

  8. Linda says:

    My absolute favorite train book has always been “The Little Engine that could”. What a wonderful giveaway! My grandson would love this!
    He is a huge train fan! Thanks!

  9. Jeffrey nehlsen says:

    By far the best book (& movie) is The Polar Express.

  10. Jacob says:

    Always been a fan of Thomas. I have plans to build a layout of Sodor in HO someday.

  11. TOM SORRELLS says:

    yes , THE POLAR EXPRESS. THE STORY gives us everything.. book to read the story, real trains to ride like THE GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAIN RAILROAD ride POLAR EXPRESS, BREVARD NC, the movie, TOM HANKS NARRATES and brings to life CHILDREN, SANTA CLAUS, CHRISTMAS HOBO ANGEL, and THE GIFT OF GIVING CHRISTMAS everyday, and the LIONEL TRAIN set that let us replay the memories by running THE POLAR EXPRESS O GAUGE TRAIN, TOO.WOW THANKS POLAR EXPRESS. TOM S GEORGIA

  12. amber says:

    Fabulous Giveaway! My sons favorite train books are the Thomas and Train Lift and Flap books he loves them we look at them over and over again .

  13. We love trains! We took the real train to San Francisco last week, went on a mini train at the park over the weekend, but you made me realize that we don’t have a favorite train book! What on earth?! Thanks for all the good ideas — look forward to finding some new favorite books.

  14. Brn2lisn says:

    Down by the Station

  15. I love anything by E. Nesbit so I will pick The Railway Children as my favorite. : )

  16. Megan says:

    We’ve always loved the ‘little engine that could’ its a great one to teach that we can do things we don’t think we can! (and i have a board book one that’s shorter and the little guys can sit through too!)

  17. shelby says:

    we love the thomas easy reader books

  18. Jamie says:

    I love the Little Engine that Could. It sure teaches a great lesson to children!

  19. Jenny Rosales says:

    love polar express

  20. Jamie says:

    I pinned this post!

  21. Carolyn Ann Colley (Griffith, Smith) says:

    my grandson loves any kind of train, his Poppy has to show him trains on Youtube when he comes up

  22. Carolyn Ann Colley (Griffith, Smith) says:

    shared on facebook: Carolyn Ann Colley

  23. Carolyn Ann Colley (Griffith, Smith) says:

    shared on pintrest: Carolyn Colley

  24. Carolyn Ann Colley (Griffith, Smith) says:

    tweeted: @22Colley

  25. Allison says:

    My boys are obsessed with trains! Their two long time favorites are Freight Train and The Polar Express.

  26. Zene says:

    My kids love Thomas
    Spottedjagiwar at yahoo dot com

  27. Probably the Boxcar Children books because I read them as a kid. Although now my youngest is starting to get into trains and Thomas. :)

    Thanks for the chance to win!

  28. Mama Zen says:

    Actually, the Polar Express is my favorite!

  29. Meg says:

    We love reading the Polar Express!

  30. Kristen says:

    My favorite is a book by Jean Fritz…I still have it….from my childhood, simply titled “The Train”.

  31. Johannah B says:

    Has to be the BOX CAR KIDS

  32. Johannah B says:

    Twitter name: 1prizewinner

  33. Nikki Lynn Hanna says:

    My favorite one would be The Little Engine That Could because it shows patience and to not give up

  34. Constance C. says:

    I tweeted about this giveaway on Twitter! @TweetN2Win

  35. Constance C. says:

    I shared this on Pinterest!

  36. Constance C. says:

    I have never had the pleasure of reading a book on trains, but I do have eletters about trains that come to my email. I absolutely love watching trains go by, and I can hear them passing by the house all through the night. I find the sound of trains very relaxing for some reason, and I love to ride them when I’m taking short trips (4 to 6 hours)

    Thank you for sharing this fun giveaway with all of us!

  37. Brittany Burmester says:

    Polar Express!

  38. Audrey Griffis says:

    i love teh polar expcress that is our all time favorite

  39. Daiva says:

    We love Thomas books

  40. Sonja S says:

    our favorite book is go train go (thomas)

  41. Mandy Blank says:

    My son is obsessed with trains!! ANY Thomas The Train book is not to be turned down.

  42. Rochel S says:

    My son loves ALL Thomas books!

  43. Alicia Zirjacks says:

    The classic book The Little Engine that could is my favorite

  44. aimee says:

    kids love thomas

  45. Jessica Peeling says:

    I loved The Polar Express — thanks for the opportunity to win! :)

  46. Angela Hartness says:

    The Polar Express is my favorite.

  47. Savannah Miller says:

    I love the little engine that could :) Our town has a big billboard that says ‘The little town that could’ As a kid I use to remember thinking that the little engine that could came from my home town :) I was a dorky kid lol

  48. Kendra says:

    Thomas books

  49. Diana Hatch says:

    Polar Express

  50. Shelly Sawicki Lash Neuhouser says:

    Love Polar Express

    mneuhouser at gmail dot com

  51. Jennifer says:

    We love the polar express!

  52. Kevin E says:

    My favorite is The Polar Express!

  53. Shannon Smith says:

    We like all the Thomas Books! And movies…and cartoons…and toys…LOL Thank you :)

  54. Wendy Rozema says:

    The Polar Express book and Movie are my kids favorite, along with Thomas!

  55. Jessica says:

    My favorite train book is “The Little Engine That Could”. It’s a classic

  56. stephanie barmann says:

    The Little Engine that Could. I still have my little golden book copy!

  57. Vanessa says:

    My 3 year old loves all the Thomas the Train books. There are so many great ones!

  58. Amy C. says:

    I love the Polar Express book and my son loves the Thomas easy readers! Thank you!

  59. Ellie W says:

    The Polar Express is my favorite.
    Thanks for the giveaway!
    eswright18 at gmail dot com

  60. Debra pauley says:

    love the little engine that could.

  61. Mary Beth Elderton says:

    I still love ‘The Little Engine That Could.” I remember it from my childhood, read it to my son, and now read it to my grand-daughter.

  62. The Little Engine that could of Polar Express.

  63. Heather R says:

    I like the Little Engine that Could, I read it to my daughter when she was little and now read it to my son.

  64. Michelle Stice says:

    The little Engine that could is the best train story and a wonderful message for everyone.

  65. Kat Emerick says:

    Polar Express is the best here.. grandkids are always asking to watch it when they visit.

  66. ronda peyton says:

    we love the little engine that could

  67. Larissa brunken says:

    We love the little engine that could

  68. AndreaH says:

    The Little Engine That Could is the best. My sister and I grew up with an entire collection of the Golden Books and this was my favorite one.

  69. AndreaH says:

    I tweeted.!/andreacouponz/status/197454730228797441

    davandihamilton (at) gmail (dot) com

  70. Kristie D. says:

    I do like the Polar Express but I really liked Harry Potter’s train too. So realistic. Platform 9 3/4 I think. *LOL* kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

  71. Kristie D. says:

    Share on Facebook.

    kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

  72. Kristie D. says:


    kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

  73. Kristie D. says:


    kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

  74. Love this giveaway, my boys would love to win. One of our favorite railway books is the Little Engine that Could.

  75. Candie L says:

    My nephew loves the Thomas The Tank Engine Books. Thank you

  76. sarah boudreaux says:

    we love all the thomas books literally have a book shelf full! my son would love this! thanks for the giveaway!!!

  77. Jackie says:

    The story that first comes to mind is The Little Engine that Could.
    Thank you!

  78. Colleen Maurina says:

    Our little guys favorite train books are The Little Train That Could and any of the Thomas the Train books!

  79. nicole weiss says:

    we love thomas the train books

  80. 1955nurse says:

    My grandson loves the Polar Express, I got him that book a long time ago!!! (Oh – & the Thomas the train books & Dvd’s, too!!!)Thanks for the chance!!!((1955nursehjc4me(at)myway(dot)com))

  81. Ani G W says:

    We love a book called Little Engine Number 9.

  82. Jeanne B. T. says:

    My favorite is the Little Engine that Could.
    Thank you for this great giveaway.

  83. Pauline M says:

    I think my family favorite is the polar express!

  84. Heather S. says:

    The Polar Express!

  85. Lisa R says:

    i love the little engine that could

    sibabe64 at ptd dot net

  86. Lisa R says:


    wont let me copy
    /past the tweet

    so i posted under


    around 12:31 am may 2nd

  87. Shannan says:

    I’m so sad I missed this giveaway! My son has loved trains for so long!! He definitely loves the Polar Express!! Even though he doesn’t have the actual polar express train he pretends with one of his black engines all the time. Good luck guys!

  88. Allison Beach says:

    Our favorite is the Polar Express! Love the vivid imagery of the book and the message to “believe”.

  89. Pat says:

    My favorite is the Little Engine That Could.

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