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The Little Engine That Could (Little Letters Edition)

The Little Engine That Could (Little Letters Edition)

3.8 67
by Watty Piper

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"I think I can! I think I can!" This well-loved classic tale of the Little Blue Engine who isn't afraid to try has and will continue to inspire and entertain generations of children.


"I think I can! I think I can!" This well-loved classic tale of the Little Blue Engine who isn't afraid to try has and will continue to inspire and entertain generations of children.

Editorial Reviews

"I think I can. I think I can." Watty Piper's 1930 story about the Little Blue Engine who believed that he could is one of those rare books that speak to us from another era. A heartening gift for children, ages 4 to 8.
Publishers Weekly
Long (I Dream of Trains) pays respectful homage to George and Doris Hauman's compositions in his visual interpretation of the classic tale of determination and perseverance, first published in 1930. Yet the artist adds a lushness to the spreads and injects even more personality into the characters; he uses the larger format to play up the vistas of mountain and valley that pose such a challenge to the engines on this route, and gives "the funniest little toy clown you ever saw" a starring role. A cheerful purple elephant whose eyes droop as one engine after another declines to pull their load, a pair of pull-toys containing curious giraffes (their necks bow in disappointment) and a cuddly, expressive stuffed monkey are among the supporting cast. The spacious spreads also allow for a more dramatic flow of the text (the original often broke a paragraph in the middle of a climactic moment). Long adorns the different engines with wry human characteristics. The cowcatcher of the haughty Shiny New Engine resembles teeth exposed by a snarl, while the Rusty Old Engine (who says, "I can not. I can not") sports a smokestack in the shape of a dilapidated top hat, a mop of gray hair and a monocle. The piece de resistance is the brave Little Blue Engine that could, with bright blue eyes in place of windows, a wide smile and-while chugging up that daunting mountain-a pink tongue protruding from her mouth. Both faithful fans and newcomers will enjoy this triumphant ride and eagerly climb aboard for repeat excursions. Ages 3-up. (Sept.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-This classic tale has been re-released with updated illustrations and a larger format. The text remains the same. The art, done with acrylics, is stylized and still retains a bit of an old-fashioned flavor. Nevertheless, the '30s look is definitely gone. In its place, readers will find artwork suggestive of a retro '50s look. As with the original, the clown takes center stage. His outfit, however, has changed from green polka dots to red pants, yellow shirt, and a colorful stocking cap. The text, with its, "I think I can, I think I can" refrain, is a timeless piece of children's literature and so familiar that it needs no elaboration. It's hard to improve upon a classic, and one advantage that the traditional edition has over this one is that the quaint and sentimental text pairs nicely with the "antique" artwork. The modern illustrations undoubtedly work better with a group but they have a faux feel to them. As such they are a little out of sync with the prim and proper style of writing in the story about the "good little boys and girls on the other side of the mountain [who will be] without the wonderful toys to play with and the good food to eat-." Nevertheless, this is an acceptable purchase, especially for those libraries without a copy of the first edition or larger libraries wishing to collect all versions of classic tales.-Roxanne Burg, Orange County Public Library, CA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A genuine meme came into the language from this beloved story, now reaching its fourth generation of children. It's still an enchanting tale of a little train filled with toys, books, fruit, milk and treats for "all those good little boys and girls on the other side of the mountain." Long has enriched this new edition with bountiful illustrations that take their palette and inspiration from the original, but are greatly enhanced by imagination and inventiveness, to say nothing of glorious printing. The colors are warmer, richer and fuller, without the dry clear crispness of the first edition. The oversized format allows Long to fill the pages and the imagination with magic like two double-page spreads of toys and treats floating in the air and brilliant perspectives that set the scenes. The trains are curvier, their faces more organic. There is real movement in the rounded lines of the roads and rails as well as the struggle to reach the top. Not a replacement, surely, but a companion, this will travel proudly next to the one that first thought it could. (Picture book. 3-7)

Product Details

Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
Little Engine That Could Series
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 5.00(h) x 0.14(d)
Age Range:
3 - 5 Years

Meet the Author

Watty Piper is the pseudonym of Arnold Munk, author behind the classic retelling of The Little Engine That Could and cofounder of Platt & Munk Publishers (now part of Grosset & Dunlap.)  Munk’s retelling of the beloved children’s tale has sold millions of copies since its 1930 publication and inspired generations to believe they can.

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The Little Engine That Could 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 67 reviews.
donnamae48 More than 1 year ago
My grandson loves this book and chimes right in while I am reading it to him. The graphics are really nice also.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a classic story of the power of a positive attitude. It demonstrates to the chld that a 'can do' attitude really works.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a great app!
Theresa Mason More than 1 year ago
I love it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
2-1/2 yrs old. This held his attention and he wanted to re-read it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
the story is fascinating))
RubyGA More than 1 year ago
Children ages three and up will love this book. They learn that even though you may be small you can accomplish a big task and save the day!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I used to read this story to my children, and I was looking for a copy that was similar to the one I had as a young mother. I'm now a grandmother and this version of "The Little Engine That Could" is just what I wanted to find. The illustrations are very colorful, and the story is told simply without a lot of embellishments that bore young children when you read to them. It teaches a good lesson on perseverance. My grandchildren enjoy this story as much as my children did.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
shudda on my device ASAP
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My kids are fond of this book!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thumbs up for the sweet and interesting ap!))))
Sean Long More than 1 year ago
Sooooooooo Cute!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Wow... books that have impacted me over the course of my life... I read this as a preschooler and the message was never lost. This timeless classic about a little train that uses will and belief in one's self to overcome obstacles is the grandaddy of the self help literature! In this beautifully reillustrated version, I can share these wonderful moments with my own children and god children. Getting the toys to the good children on the other side of the mountain is the core motivation to show children young and old the power of self belief. This book was a major inspiration to me as a child and through my own books, I continue to help perpetuate the choice to believe in yourself. As an author of children's books, I treasure the magic that reading brings to children. This is about as important a tool as any that you will ever arm your children with. Take a shot on this book... you will not be disappointed. Brian Weiner CEO The Illusion Factory (Inform and Empower Yourself¿) Author Toad Catchers' Creek
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Such a cute book and good book for kids, I read this to my kids and they love it and my daughter loves it and shes 13! This is book is for all ages. LOVE IT!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cute vary cute!
psycheKK More than 1 year ago
"The Little Engine that Could" is another much maligned book. It is often criticized for being too saccharine or preachy, and if I read it every day, I might find that to be true. But reading occasionally (maybe once a month), I find it delightful. First of all, it features a train, toys and a circus. What more could you want? Personally, I could do with less of the clown (as in, not at all), but not everyone shares my quirk or phobia.  And it is a sweet story with an easy-to-grasp point. Is there anyone who grew up before 1990 who can hear "I think I can" and not remember the engine? And the illustrations (again excepting the clown) are colorful and enjoyable. Overall, it is no wonder this book is a classic of children's literature.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The size of this book is ridiculous. The text size is too small for young readers. They have added a card-sheet wrap around it, and you can't get rid of it without leaving clumsy cut-marks. I planned to give this book as a gift along with others books, which are regular-sized. But now, I'm feeling too embarassed to include this in the pack. It does not say anywhere that this is an abridged edition, unless you click on the book image and inspect it closely. I am thoroughly disappointed with this piece of crap.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My grandson loves things that move care, train planes. He love this book.
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