This blog of mine doesn’t get too many comments. Well, if you’re talking about legit comments that is. I think my comment blocker is up to more than thirty thousand pieces of spam. In fact, I don’t even know if I’ve got that many readers, I mean, besides myself and possibly my mother. But there must be some readers out there, because I do get quite a bit of email. All sorts of email: from people asking me how much their timetables are worth (not really sure), to people sending me their phone numbers if I ever want to talk about trains (I have a phobia of telephones. Really, I do). More often then not, I enjoy the emails I get. (I did get a mail once, telling me that I was the ugliest person on planet earth. I LOL’ed.) People send me pictures, people tell me their train stories. I really enjoy this, despite the fact that I feel a tad socially awkward and often fail miserably at responding to my mail. A few people recently have mentioned something about a song called The Last Train, and something about maybe a book coming out. I didn’t really think much of it, until I happened to see the book hanging out by the checkout line of Borders the other day.

I was standing behind a woman in line, she was even more indecisive than I, debating which of the silly knicknacks they put buy the checkout counter she should buy. Hiding on the shelves was a book called The Last Train. I tend to ignore the children’s book section (unless the book is The Stinky Cheese Man, because frankly, that book is awesome) but I had some time to kill, so I flipped through it. Let me just say, I absolutely adored the illustrations of this book. I would love to have a print of one of these illustrations on my wall (and conveniently the illustrator, Wendell Minor, sells them on his website… if only I had an extra hundred dollars lying around.) Anyways, I loved the illustrations so much that I made an impulse buy, and I wanted to share it all with you…

The spread above is definitely my favorite illustration from the book, and the one below my favorite part of the text. I definitely remember putting pennies on the tracks when I was a kid. Obviously not in Metro-North’s territory, but out in the hills of Pennsylvania, waiting for a freight train to pass.

If you’re interested in the book, it was written by Gordon Titcomb, and as previously mentioned, illustrated by Wendell Minor. And if your local Borders is closing like mine is, you might even get a deal on buying it! Oh, and you can check out this video that features some of the book’s illustrations, as well as Titcomb’s song The Last Train.

5 Responses

  1. Hi Emily!

    Thanks so much for writing about The Last Train!

    It is my first book for children and, like you, my heart is tugged by most things relating to trains.
    Count me among the new visitors to your blog.

    Best regards,

  2. Al Cyone says:

    In the same vein, here’s Utah Phillips’ great song, “Daddy What’s A Train?”:

  3. a fan says:

    You definitely have followers, and some of us are even MNR employees! ;-)

  4. vjp says:

    Hi – I am a frequent reader Emily – but don’t think I have ever left a comment. ‘I ride the Harlem Line’ is great fun to read and the photos are wonderful. Keep up the good work and thanks for sharing the book with us.

  5. James says:

    It’s the morning after the morning you and I met on the train you boarded at Goldens Bridge…how is it possible I have not heard of you ’til now, when I have been Riding The Harlem Line (from Wingdale), daily, since 1993? I could tell you stories. But you seem to know them all already.

    How fortunate I am that Cat Girl chose the aisle seat of my three-seat bench and we became acquainted. It was the cat hat, I think, that caught my eye, so what did I do? Of course I brought out my new sketchbook and began drawing (I have several sketchbooks filled with rider portraits, but no others in cat hats). I’ll finish the drawing today, scan it and send it to you, for your collection.

    Going your way…

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