The Polar Express Gift Set

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Overview


The classic holiday favorite is now available in a newly designed gift package, featuring a dramatic reading by Liam Neeson (on both cassette and compact disk), a hardcover copy of The Polar Express, and a keepsake bell with ribbon.
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Overview


The classic holiday favorite is now available in a newly designed gift package, featuring a dramatic reading by Liam Neeson (on both cassette and compact disk), a hardcover copy of The Polar Express, and a keepsake bell with ribbon.
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
All aboard! Hop on the Polar Express and celebrate this holiday classic! Millions of readers have fallen in love with its Christmas message of faith and stunning illustrations. When a train headed to the North Pole pulls into town, one curious boy hops on in search of an adventure. He gets more than he expected when he meets Santa. The boy is offered a Christmas gift, and little does he know that his life is changed forever. He soon discovers the true meaning of Christmas. We know this sweet and heartwarming tale has brought tears to the eyes of its many readers. This awesome gift set is sure to enhance the experience -- it includes a hardcover copy of the Caldecott Award–winning book; recordings of the story on both cassette and compact disc, narrated by Liam Neeson; and a souvenir bell from Santa's sleigh. Celebrate the joy of the Christmas season with a true classic that is sure to inspire.
From the Publisher
“Even the most hardened Santa doubters might find in THE POLAR EXPRESS the faith to believe again.”

American Bookseller

“A publishing phenomenon—an established picture-book classic.”

The New York Times

School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-Chris Van Allsburg's Caldecott-winning Christmas classic (HM, 1985) is 15 years old, but it is a timeless story that just keeps getting better. Actor Liam Neeson's authoritative, unhurried narration brings the story to life. Peaceful, unobtrusive orchestrations punctuate the text like falling snow. As the Polar Express pulls into town one Christmas Eve, offering a magical, unforgettable trip to the North Pole, a young boy boards the train. When Santa offers him the first gift of the season, the boy chooses one bell from the harness of a reindeer. On the return trip, the bell is lost, and Christmas for the boy seems to be ruined, until the bell reappears under the Christmas tree, with a mystery of its own, solved only by a belief in the spirit of Christmas. This release won't sit on the shelf long. Parents, teachers, and librarians everywhere will be grateful to have someone else read this tear-jerker in their stead. This well-written, impeccably presented package deserves all the attention it will get.-Kirsten Martindale, Buford Academy, GA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780618077366
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 10/1/2000
  • Edition description: Book and cassette, 33 min.
  • Edition number: 15
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.77 (w) x 15.71 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Chris Van Allsburg is the winner of two Caldecott Medals, for Jumanji and The Polar Express, as well as the recipient of a Caldecott Honor Book for The Garden of Abdul Gasazi. The author and illustrator of numerous picture books for children, he has also been awarded the Regina Medal for lifetime achievement in children’s literature. In 1982, Jumanji was nominated for a National Book Award and in 1996, it was made into a popular feature film. Chris Van Allsburg was formerly an instructor at the Rhode Island School of Design. He lives in Rhode Island with his wife and two children.

Biography

Multiple Caldecott Medal winner Chris Van Allsburg grew up in the 1950s in and around Grand Rapids, Michigan. He majored in sculpture at the University of Michigan's College of Architecture & Design and graduated in 1972. He received his M.F.A. in 1975 from Rhode Island School of Design.

After graduate school, Van Allsburgh set up a sculpture studio in Providence, married and settled in the area, and began exhibiting his work in New York City and throughout New England. Around the same time, he became interested in drawing. His wife, Lisa, encouraged him to pursue children's book illustration, putting him in contact with her friend David Macauley, a successful artist and author. Macauley's editor at Houghton Mifflin was impressed by Van Allsburgh's work and advised him to try his hand at illustrating a story of his own. His maiden effort, The Garden of Abdul Gasazi, was published in 1979 and received a Caldecott Honor Medal.

Since that auspicious beginning, Van Allsburgh has gone on to produce a string of wonderfully inventive, critically acclaimed, and award-winning books. He gathers inspiration from unlikely quarters -- the progress of ants across a kitchen counter, crayon streaks in a child's coloring book, a children's board game come to life -- and executes his ideas on a provocative but surefire "What if..." principle.

Among his many awards are two Caldecott Medals -- one for Jumanji, written in 1982 and the other for 1985's The Polar Express; a National Book Award (also for Jumanji); and the Regina Medal for lifetime achievement in children's literature.

Good To Know

Van Allsburg's grandfather owned and operated the East End Creamery and delivered milk and milk products to homes around the Grand Rapids area in yellow and blue trucks.

One of Van Allsburg's childhood homes was a big, Tudor-styled house on a wide, tree-lined street. He used the street as a model for the cover art of what is arguably his most famous book, The Polar Express.

Because so many students at Van Allsburg's high school excelled academically, representatives from the University of Michigan would visit each year to interview interested seniors and admit them on the spot if they met qualifications. During his senior year, Van Allsburg was told about the art program affiliated with the University's College of Architecture & Design and thought it sounded like fun. Although he had never had any formal art classes, he fibbed to the admissions officer, saying he had taken private lessons outside of school.

Two of Van Allsburg's bestselling books, Jumanji and The Polar Express, were subsequently turned into blockbuster movies.

Van Allsburg is not your typical "feel good" children's author. He has been known to handle darker themes, and his stories often involve bizarre worlds and dreamscapes.

In all his stories, Van Allsburg inserts a little white bull terrier modeled after a real-life dog owned by his brother-in-law. (Another popular children's author, David Shannon, does the same thing, but Shannon's pup is a Westie!)

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    1. Hometown:
      Providence, Rhode Island
    1. Date of Birth:
      June 18, 1949
    2. Place of Birth:
      Grand Rapids, Michigan
    1. Education:
      University of Michigan College of Architecture & Design, 1972; Rhode Island School of Design, MFA, 1975
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

On Christmas eve, many years ago, I lay quietly in my bed. I did not rustle the sheets. I breathed slowly and silently. I was listening for a sound—a sound a friend had told me I’d never hear—the ringing bells of Santa’s sleigh.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 8 )
Rating Distribution

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(8)

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Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2004

    Great book, great gift!

    A classic for 18 years, now a movie, and here a book/cd AND a bell! You probably read this either to your children or to yourself growing up! This looks like the perfect way to pass it on to the next generation!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2004

    TOTALLY AWESOME SET

    THIS SET IS EXTREMELY AMAZING AND EXCELLENT! ANY CHILD WILL LOVE THIS SET! IT HAS EVERYTHING A CHILD COULD WANT AND IT'S SUCH A GOOD CHRISTMAS STORY.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 3, 2003

    One of our favorites

    I bought this book when my 23 year old was a baby and we read it as a family every Christmas Eve ... and my other children are my 18 and 20 year old sons! It is a very cherished part of our rituals.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2002

    Perfect

    This book is a true classic. Is it just for younger children?? No way. I am a 18 year old male and in college, and will be purchasing this book for someone special here. I know that it will be just perfect.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2002

    Wonderful

    All growing up my father has read this to the family on Christmas Eve. It puts tears to his eyes and has a hard time reading the ending when the boy can no longer hear the"bell". Sometimes life passes so quickly that your imagination gets lost in the schuffle. It is a must read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 10, 2002

    i love this book

    this book, along with how the grinch told christmas, is my favorite christmas book of all time. my family and i used to sit around the fire and listen to it being read aloud on pbs. last year when i couldn't find our copy i ran right out to the store to buy it so i wouldn't have a christmas without it

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2000

    great children's christmas book

    I have read this book several times and it is a wonderful christmas story. Its a nice book to give to any one who has childern.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2000

    A Cherished Tradition

    My husband and I try to read this book aloud to each other every Christmas. I say try, because three out of three times we've ended up weeping with the sheer joy of it. For you non-sentimentalists out there, the pictures are really good, too. Kids really love this book, as it truly embodies the warmth, mystery and magic of the season.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2000

    A Family Holiday Tradition

    I'm 15 years old and I don't think this book should be recommended only for children of a younger age. For about 7 or so years now, my family and I have traded off reading the story to each other every Christmas eve. I will not let anyone go to sleep before it is read. I recommend it for children of all ages. It's a wonderful holiday story.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2000

    Enchanting

    This was a favorite of my children when they were young. It is a great gift for those with young children. An enchanting story and is still one of our treasured Christmas traditions.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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