Joni's Reviews > The Boxcar Children

The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner
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F_50x66
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Apr 27, 12

bookshelves: josh, second-grade, chapter-book, childrens-classic, third-grade
Read from April 06 to 27, 2012

My son (8.5 years) is currently reading the Boxcar Children to me. He loves the story of four children trying to live on their own. They show up one night at a bakery and beg for something to eat, and the owners take them in and give them food and shelter for the night. But the children overhear the wife saying she plans to call the authorities and have them pick up the youngest boy, who I think is 4 at the beginning of the story. So together, the siblings escape.

They soon find an abandoned boxcar in the woods and they camp in it. The older sibling takes odd jobs in town and earns enough money to feed them, while the other three (with the protection of a watchdog) stay in the boxcar and explore the woods, finding blueberries to eat and searching the dump for dishes and other household items.

What I love about the Boxcar Children is how sweet the siblings are to each other. They really take care of each other, thinking of the others above themselves, and they are especially sweet to the youngest. There is no teasing, antagonizing, and competing among them like there is in so many more modern books.

In another book I know they find their grandfather and go live under his care, but they are also given free reign of an island and I think a small house on the island, so while they do have an adult who is seeing over them, they still have the freedom to explore and take care of each other day to day.
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