Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Railway Children” as Want to Read:
The Railway Children
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Read Book* *Different edition

The Railway Children

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  47,565 ratings  ·  1,273 reviews
Roberta, Peter and Phyllis live a lovely life in a lovely London villa with their lovely mother and father. But all that will change.

When Father is taken away unexpectedly, they have to leave their comfortable life in London to go and live in a small cottage in the country.

The children seek solace in the nearby railway station, and make friends with Perks the Porter and t
...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published May 3rd 2018 by Puffin Classics (first published 1906)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Railway Children, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all) That would depend on the person. A book I love might bore someone else witless.

Personally I first discovered this book in my 40s and found it a good…more
That would depend on the person. A book I love might bore someone else witless.

Personally I first discovered this book in my 40s and found it a good read. Any children's book that can entertain and engage an adult (without being an adult book disguised as a children's book) is a classic.(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
really liked it 4.00  · 
Rating details
 ·  47,565 ratings  ·  1,273 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Jan-Maat
The shock involved in crying over a children's book that endorses theft, children soliciting favours from old men, and frequent acts of trespass on to Railway property is hard to describe.

As is the dislocation in reading a Father tell his son that girls are as clever as boys before inviting his daughter to consider a railway career, and a man with a Polish surname imprisoned in Siberia for offending the Russian state. Still, I am fairly sure that this was published in 1906 and not 2006, afterall
...more
Manny
Pilot for the Celebrity Death Match Review Tournament, The Railway Children versus Atlas Shrugged

It's a capacity crowd tonight at the Surrealist Boxing Stadium, and everyone's wondering if The Railway Children have a chance against Atlas Shrugged. I can see them in the blue corner, I must say they look nervous, they know they're behind on weight and reach but their supporters are out in force, that's always worth a lot, Bobbie is trying to calm Phyllis, she's whispering something in her ear. And
...more
Dhanaraj Rajan
Question: Why do I read Children's Literature?
Answer: I read them because they are feel good stories and they fill you to the brim with hopes. They teach you great lessons through simple actions and easy sentences.

Question: Did The Railway Children fulfill these expectations?
Answer: Certainly. My Four Stars rating is the proof of that.

Question: Why not a Five star rating?
Answer: Unfortunately I fell in the trap of comparison game. I compared it with other books of similar genre that had received
...more
Dannii Elle
Feb 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recently, I have been going through a phase of revisiting my favourite childhood reads to see if they still garner the same awe and satisfaction when read as an adult. This, I was happy to discover, is as beloved to me now as when I first read it as a child.

My younger self appreciated the focus on sibling bonds - from their minor feuds to their lasting camaraderie - but my older self has discovered the darker and more harrowing story-line, that I either seem to have prior missed or that had comp
...more
Muhammad Ahmed Siddiqui
changed my mind this is a 5 STAR BOOK

I am overwhelmed by the emotions and was hungover for a day. The whole journey throughout this book was magical. It was nostalgic. It was beautiful.

This book tells the story of three children whose father is taken away by the police and they have to live with their mother in poverty nearside a railway station.

If poverty is living in a wonderful countryside, meeting with lively people, roaming around free and exploring new areas then I will happily accept i
...more
Becki
Jan 13, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One thing I've noticed while reading "the classics" is that most of them center around female characters. I find that interesting, especially when you look over American educational statistics and see that girls generally fair much better at English class than boys. Perhaps this could be a reason?

It was a relief, then, to read The Railway Children and discover that female and male characters get equal play in this book. In fact, it was the favorite book of a male friend of mine when he was littl
...more
Ivonne Rovira
Children who have grown up with Matilda, The Dumb Bunnies or The Cat in the Hat can't really appreciate what an advance Edith Nesbit's The Railway Children actually was. For the first time, an author wrote about children who weren't miniature adults, who weren't preternaturally perfect, but who were flesh-and-blood children, children who quarreled and worried and snapped at one another when they grew fatigued or anxious.

Nesbit also provides a somewhat realistic view into the Edwardian period: Wh
...more
Luisa Knight
Did you know that C.S. Lewis was greatly influenced by E. Nesbit’s literature? He adopted a similar writing style and mannerism to hers. In fact, he went as far as to mention the children in this story, the Bastable children, in his book The Magician’s Nephew. (Now you want to go back and read it, don’t you!).

So if you’re a Lewis fan, you’ll be delighted with this book and will enjoy discovering what aided his inspiration.

And if you’re not a Lewis fan, well, first you should take yourself in for
...more
Scarlet
Listened to a Librivox recording of this classic during a nine-hour car ride. It kept me entertained throughout the journey (and also helped to keep carsickness at bay). I would probably have enjoyed this a lot more had I read this in my early teens, when I was obsessed with authors like Enid Blyton. It's a charming, feel-good children's story with a cast of precocious kids who have their share of adventures while also rescuing a couple of people and brightening up the lives of the town folk in ...more
Roger Brunyate
Jul 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-readers
Nothing if not Strictly Truthful
And something wonderful did happen exactly four days after she had said this. I wish I could say it was three days after, because in fairy tales it is always three days after that things happen. But this is not a fairy story, and besides, it really was four and not three, and I am nothing if not strictly truthful.
Edith Nesbit had her tongue well in her cheek, of course, as she came to the end of her children's classic, published 110 years ago in 1906. After all,
...more
Laura Verret
I believe this may be one of the best children's stories I have ever read. Told in a creative and sprightly way, this book carries you into the story of Roberta, Peter and Phyllis. After their father is called away on a long, mysterious trip, these three must adjust and help their mother as they sell their mansion and move into a smaller cottage just outside of a rural village. There they make friends with various people who work at the railway station, and thus begins their love of trains. They ...more
Kellyn Roth
This is such an adorable story! My mom read it aloud to me and my brothers a couple years back. It's touching, funny, and picturesque.

~Kellyn Roth, Reveries Reviews
Duane
E. Nesbit's (Edith) story, The Railway Children, was published in 1906. This first decade of the 20th century also introduced us to Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables and Burnett's A Little Princess. All three are considered childrens classics but are equally enjoyed by adult readers. Unlike many of today's children's stories, these classics place children in real life situations, and they find real life solutions to their problems. Although sometimes far fetched, they provide a level of belivab ...more
Ferdy
A light, summery, charming read in an old school British sort of way. It was a little slow paced and predictable though, then again I was expecting it to be like that.

I did find the kids quite cheeky when they went around demanding things from the Old Gentlemen, the villagers, and the poor Doctor. I know they were trying to help their mum and other people, but it was still kind of greedy and cheeky. Though they were quite selfless and nice when it came to the Russian guy and the red jumper guy,
...more
Jenny Baker
Jan 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens, classics, 2019
My first read of 2019. I wish I had discovered E. Nesbit as a child, because I think it would have helped me to become more of an early reader.
Kady Monroe
Mar 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A quick story about a family which has to move to a house near a railway line. They befriend the stationmaster and one of the train passengers. It was an enjoyable few hours audiobook.
Tracey
Jan 06, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-star
Again E. Nesbit shows herself expert at showing-not-telling, and at writing for anyone and everyone. With the story told from the point of view of the children, and aimed at children, all anyone under a certain height level is going to understand is that the father of the family goes away one night and does not come back, and the mother tells the three that he is away on business – and everything changes. Mother is upset or sad all the time, even when courageously pretending otherwise. The child ...more
L.H. Johnson
I'm on a bit of a classics kick recently. And as mentioned in my review of For Love Of A Horse, these aren't the Oliver Twist sort of classics. These are classics that have framed my childhood - and my adulthood - and are just really, really good.

I love The Railway Children. (And I love Bobbie in particular.)E Nesbit is a stylish, approachable author who writes with a sort of seditious aplomb. There's a whole level of this book that I missed first time round, the subtle comments on society, cla
...more
Tarmia
This was an endearing read, but one that, for me, was nothing more than endearing. The children, the side characters, and the narrator were all well considered and gave an almost whimsical sensation to the book, but I was lost when trying to properly connect and feel emotionally invested. It was very reminiscent of Little Women but luckily had less of the sexist undertones. Yes, I am aware of when these books were written, but I felt almost 'dirtied' by such statements as; 'girls are so much sof ...more
Eva
Sep 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018-books
I cry so hard reading this book. So. Hard.
Marlene
"...it's not so much what you do, as what you mean."

The Railway Children (1906, Wells Gardner, Darton) by E. Nesbit, is a children's chapter book set in Edwardian England near a railway station in Yorkshire. According to Wikipedia, the timeframe is thought to be the year 1905, which is the same year this story was published serially in The London Magazine. I tend to enjoy classic children's books, so when I found this title in my husband's library of Audible books, how could I resist?

Rating: 5
...more
Kavita
Apr 18, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Meh. Tedious.

I really thought I would enjoy a book about the railways, and I did enjoy that aspect of it. It's funny how quaint and informal the railway officials are but it was nice to see the children's growing love for the railway station, the trains and the employees working there.

The plot, as it goes, was boring. The childrens' father was imprisoned for spying but the mother does not tell the children anything and lets them speculate all manner of terrible things, which I found to be quite
...more
Mangrii
La historia nos cuenta las pequeñas aventuras de un Roberta, Peter y Phyllis tras trasladarse a vivir a Tres Chimeneas; todo ello tras un extraño suceso en su familia, de repente tu padre ha desaparecido y ellos no saben lo que ha pasado. En su nuevo emplazamiento, los niños vivirán entretenidas aventuras, harán amistad con el Jefe de la estación, con el mozo de la misma o con un misterioso Anciano Caballero que todos los días les saluda en el tren de las 9.15, tras salir del túnel.

Narrado en te
...more
Vu K
Jun 25, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: any seven to ten-year-old children, their parents, or would-be parents
Thích hơn quyển 'Five Children and It' cũng của Nesbit (đã được dịch sang tiếng Việt, mang tựa đề 'Năm đứa trẻ và con tiên cát', bản dịch của Nguyễn Thị Huyền, NXB Văn hóa Thông tin).

Một cuốn sách mang tính giáo dục, nhưng đầy nhẹ nhàng chứ không khô cứng vì câu chuyện diễn ra thật tự nhiên.

Đang sống trong sung sướng, những đứa trẻ rơi vào cảnh khốn cùng khi cha của chúng bị bắt, mẹ phải làm việc mà không đủ để chi tiêu, nên những đứa trẻ không phải đến trường, mẹ lại không có thời gian để chăm
...more
Kathleen Flynn
A children's classic I somehow failed to read as a child. Sweet without being treacly. A lot of fun.
Tony
THE RAILWAY CHILDREN. (1906). E. Nesbit. ***.
E. (Edith) Nesbit (1856-1924) was a writer of children’s books that were very successful in England and remain so to this day. She is not read much in America, primarily because her plots are simply too sweet for U.S. kids – or at least that’s what the critics say. In this book, one of her most popular, we meet a family of mother, father and three children. The kids are, from the eldest down, Roberta (Bobbie), Peter, and Phyllis. It’s a perfect famil
...more
Mommalibrarian
Written in 1906 - still fresh. The fact that there is no electricity and people walk instead of getting their mother to drive them are the only real indication of its age. On page 6 the father tells his ten year old son, "Of course they [girls] can help. Girls are just as clever as boys, and don't you forget it." When the father is taken away the 'clever' mother supports the family writing poems and children's stories. Her son regrets at one point that she has to be so clever as she has less tim ...more
Ritika Gupta
Jan 22, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While reading some books, you smile often and this wasn't that kind of book. Because you don't smile often but always. The goodness of heart, the kindness, innocence and love is overwhelming especially in today's world. Almost an utopian work, worth a read not only for kids but also grown ups. And especially for the skeptics grown ups. Such works should be read more often. A breath of clean and fresh air amidst the polluted air that we breathe.
Emily
A sweet, charming listen, thanks to LibriVox! A little contrived at times, but quite pleasantly so.

4.5 stars.
Michelle (Sherbet Lemon)
Truth to tell, I actually downloaded this book by accident when I was looking for The Boxcar Children, but what a lucky mistake! I mean, I still like The Boxcar Children as well but appreciate this more, given the plot and themes and my own experiences growing up. It's nice connecting with it, despite the fact that it was written over a hundred years ago.

Just like the children in this story my father was accused of a crime he didn't commit. While he didn't go to jail (and was declared innocent w
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Never too Late to...: 2018 July: The Railway Children by E Nesbit 19 25 Aug 02, 2018 04:34PM  
Reading Addicts: June Classic BOTM_The Railway Children 5 15 Jun 23, 2016 03:41AM  
Around the Year i...: The Railway Children, by Edith Nesbit 4 26 Mar 01, 2016 07:22AM  
enchanting adventures 3 31 Oct 09, 2014 05:09PM  
Reading Everythin...: The railway children 1 14 May 18, 2013 01:09AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Winter Holiday (Swallows and Amazons, #4)
  • What Katy Did
  • The Children of the New Forest
  • Tom's Midnight Garden
  • Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, #2)
  • The Borrowers Afield (The Borrowers #2)
  • Stig of the Dump
  • Skating Shoes (Shoes, #7)
  • Arabel's Raven (Arabel and Mortimer, #1)
  • Treasures of the Snow
  • The Silver Crown
  • Return to Gone-Away
See similar books…
640 followers
Edith Nesbit (married name Edith Bland; 15 August 1858 – 4 May 1924) was an English author and poet; she published her books for children under the name of E. Nesbit.
She wrote or collaborated on over 60 books of fiction for children, several of which have been adapted for film and television. She was also a political activist and co-founded the Fabian Society, a socialist organisation later connec
...more
“Also she had the power of silent sympathy. That sounds rather dull, I know, but it's not so dull as it sounds. It just means that a person is able to know that you are unhappy, and to love you extra on that account, without bothering you by telling you all the time how sorry she is for you.” 29 likes
“Don't you think it's rather nice to think that we're in a book that God's writing? If I were writing the book, I might make mistakes. But God knows how to make the story end just right—in the way that's best for us.” 23 likes
More quotes…