Title: The Trolley Car Family
Author: Eleanor Lowenton Clymer
File Under: Chapter book
I came across this book in the vintage edition that you see in the photo about ten years ago, at a yard sale. What a sweet, lively book! I know that if we had had it when our children were young, we would have had many hours of “playing trolley” and making pies to shore up the family finances.
Come to think of it, maybe it’s good we didn’t, because as intense as our kids were about living the life of the books they read, hearts would have been broken over our declining to move into a trolley car right then and there.
This book has everything kids love: a pressing difficulty that the family must solve, a grouchy neighbor they must win over, an adventure that takes the children away from daily life, and a mother and father who, unlike their own boring and unimaginative parents, are willing to just go with their brilliant ideas already.
Some of you will think of The Boxcar Children when you hear about this book. My kids always felt that The Boxcar Children let them down sadly after the first book in the series. True, it has the undoubted advantage of being about orphans (children love books about orphans!). But otherwise, I think The Trolley Car Family is just more fun (and maybe had the wisdom to leave it at that first book).
*I am reluctantly bowing to pressure to post ages for the books. I live by Lewis’ maxim, “A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.”