On the Blue Comet

On the Blue Comet


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"An entertaining evocation of silver-screen and steel-train glamour." — The New York Times Book Review 

In the wake of the Crash of 1929, Oscar Ogilvie’s life is changed forever. His dad has to sell their house and cherished model trains and head west in search of work, leaving Oscar lonely and miserable in the care of his aunt. Then he meets a mysterious drifter and witnesses a crime so stunning it catapults him on an incredible train journey from coast to coast, from one decade to another. Filled with suspense and peppered with witty encounters with Hollywood stars and other bigwigs of history, this captivating novel resonates with warmth, humor, and the true magic of a timeless adventure.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780763658151
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Publication date: 09/11/2012
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 208,684
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.60(h) x 1.00(d)
Lexile: 730L (what's this?)
Age Range: 10 Years

About the Author

Rosemary Wells has written or illustrated more than 120 books for children and has received numerous awards. She is the creator of the beloved Max and Ruby stories; the co-author (with Secundino Fernandez) of MY HAVANA: MEMORIES OF A CUBAN BOYHOOD, illustrated by Peter Ferguson; the author of LINCOLN AND HIS BOYS, illustrated by P.J. Lynch; and the illustrator of MY VERY FIRST MOTHER GOOSE, edited by Iona Opie. She lives in Greenwich, Connecticut.

Bagram Ibatoulline has illustrated many acclaimed books for children, including THUMBELINA, retold by Brian Alderson; THE MIRACULOUS JOURNEY OF EDWARD TULANE and GREAT JOY, both by Kate DiCamillo; THE ANIMAL HEDGE by Paul Fleischman; Hans Christian Andersen’s THE TINDERBOX and THE NIGHTENGALE, both retold by Stephen Mitchell; THE SERPENT CAME TO GLOUCESTER by M. T. Anderson; and HANA IN THE TIME OF THE TULIPS by Deborah Noyes. He lives in Pennsylvania.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Ibatoulline's full-color, atmospheric Norman Rockwell-like vignettes enhance the nostalgic feel of this warm, cleverly crafter adventure.
—Kirkus Reviews

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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On the Blue Comet 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Everone should read this unforgetadle book! the picturs flat out stuning.I hope everone gets the chance to read this fadlous book.good for all ages
Evansmom99 More than 1 year ago
I read this in 2 days, I couldn't put it down. Set in the 1920's during the great depression. A story of the love between a boy, his father and their love for the famous Lionel trains. Beautifully written with full page color illustrations. A magical journey you won't forget.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
They travl through time so COOL
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book!
ToReadToNap on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What a fun ride! This story of a young boy during the depression and the model train set he shares with his father has magic, history, and adventure. Throughout the novel the main character, an 11 year old boy meets historical characters that are (cleverly) not quickly identified. While children reading the book may not pick up on the clues, it makes the book a delightful read-aloud as the adults will be pleasantly surprised by the supporting cast. As other reviewers have said, this book has a "Twilight Zone" feel to it, with an appealing main character and a heartfelt story.
ElizaJane on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Reason for Reading: I've read a few of the author's books and this time it was the historical fiction aspects along with the time travel that drew me to this book. Plus I do also have a thing for old trains.Oscar Ogilvie lives in the early 1930's. It is Christmas Eve, 1931 to be exact when the action starts to take place in the book. But a bit earlier than this we get to know Oscar and his dad who have a passion for model train collecting and have spend hours in their basement working with their layout. Oscar's dad doesn't do too badly with his job at John Deere and they have accumulated a nice set of Lionel trains. But the crash of '29 hits and eventually his dad loses his job, sells the house and the train set, goes to California to find work and leaves Oscar behind with his prim and proper spinster sister. Then on the evening in question, Oscar is visiting the nightwatchman at the bank, a friend, who lets him play with the train layout on display there, the one that used to be his. On that fateful night the bank is robbed and Oscar jumps for his life into the miniature train layout to find himself in the future where he works his way to join his father in California. Only Oscar is now 21 years old and the date is 1941 and he's been missing, presumed kidnapped all these years. As Oscar tries to get back home to 1931, he takes a side trip to 1926 where he is only 6 years old.This was a fun book. Oscar is a quick thinking character and an enjoyable one to know. Even though he gets himself into this mess to start with he is generally a nice boy with good intentions who prays Hail Marys when things become too intense for him to handle. Oscar is an average kid who loves his dad very much and on his travels he always befriends someone who helps him through each stage of his journey. While Oscar's main focus is to return home, he also is desperately trying to remember the details of the robbery as he has learnt in the future that a $10,000 reward was offered by the bank for the capture of the criminals.The time travel aspect is fantasy based and just happens when Oscar's need is so great, usually from fear, and it is never scrutinized or explained away. One must suspend reality to accept this part of the book and also the number of people he eventually tells his story to who believe his tale is unrealistic and must be taken at face value. The historical fiction side of the book is informative while being entertaining. Much is learnt about the stock market crash and how the depression affected the rich, poor and middle classes. The 1941 era imparts mostly information about the bombing of Pearl Harbour and the war with Japan and finally the 1926 episode is the shortest mainly focusing on the restricted lifestyle of a rich girl who would rather be playing baseball than wearing frilly dresses and playing with dolls.The illustrations are simply divine. Full colour paintings one would expect to find in a picture book, not your usual MG chapter book. So realistic and charming, they have a sense of Norman Rockwell to them. The book's not heavily illustrated, but there are enough so that just as you are feeling that it's about time for a picture one comes along. Many of them are two page spreads to boot!A good romp, with lots of excitement and adventure. Oscar meets many interesting people along the way and situations are always turning from humorous to fraught with tension. This is a good "boy book" with unique plot elements making it stand out from the usual fare being offered these days.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hey im not reading this book on here but its still a great book! Last year it was a black sosan nomany(maryland book contest by the way)
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Colette Rogers More than 1 year ago
A perfect story for young and old. The color pictures where absolutly amazing. The characters and story couldn't have been better
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Shrigs and goes to res 6 to wait
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
*A white and grey tabby shecat walks in.* Hi! I'm Featherdash!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Go to the next res