One fall day, a bear follows the smell of grain down a mountain and onto a hopper car on a mile-long freight train. Nobody sees him but Jeffrey, who shouts at him to get off the train. The bear pays no attention and soon settles in for a long winter sleep. For months, Jeffrey watches for the train to pass through his town, and each time it does, he tries to rouse the bear. But it’s not until the fresh green smells of spring are in the air that the bear wakes from his sleep and heads back up the mountain.
Bear on the Train combines a beautifully written text with richly evocative illustrations to create an unusual tale of hibernation that hums with the rhythm of the rails.close this panel
Julie Lawson’s simple, repetitive text echoes the train’s rhythmic motion and lends itself to reading aloud. She gives her story a sense of authenticity, using accurate train vocabulary like “hopper” and “siding” and describing the train’s voyage west with geographical accuracy ...
Beautiful text combines with the evocative illustrations to create an unusual tale of hibernation that hums with the rhythm of the rails.
Deines’s rich oil paintings ... are attractively textured … Best shared as a read-aloud to appreciate fully the language and captivating illustrations.
Kids will enjoy the secret adventure story with its rollicking train rhythms and dramatic brown-shaded oil paintings.
Lawson’s words have a lovely elemental temper, spare, chiming and timeless ... The train and the landscapes it runs through are beautifully rendered by Deines, with an impressionistic sense of place harnessed by the implacable energy of the locomotive and its train of cars.