Commonplace: E. Nesbit (The Railway Children)

Commonplaces at Running in Circles

I’ve been reading tons of booklists for children’s chapter books lately, so I don’t even remember where I stumbled across a recommendation for The Railway Children (not to be confused with the Boxcar Children).  I downloaded the free Kindle edition with NO clue what it was even about, but I’ve been delighted!  It’s the story of three children who suddenly find themselves very poor after their father is mysteriously taken away.  Their mother relocates them to the country, where they live near a railway station that connects them to adventures in the world beyond their little home.  (I’ve been reading it to Abby, and although she’s enjoying it, I think it’s ideal for children a little older who might have a better understanding of the historical context.)

This segment made me laugh out loud:

“When I’m very old indeed, I shall show [my medal for bravery] to my grandchildren and say, ‘We only did our duty,’ and they’ll be awfully proud of me.”  [said Peter.]

“You have to be married,” warned Phyllis, “or you don’t have any grandchildren.”

“I suppose I shall have to be married some day,” said Peter, “but it will be an awful bother having her round all the time. I’d like to marry a lady who had trances, and only woke up once or twice a year.”

“Just to say you were the light of her life and then go to sleep again. Yes. That wouldn’t be too bad.” said Bobbie.

“When I get married,” said Phyllis., “I shall want him to want me to be awake all the time, so that I can hear him say how nice I am.”


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