Catalan / Spain
El tren de les parades sense nom
(The train of the nameless stations)
Sala i Vila, Carles
Arenzana, Estela de (illus.)
Barcelona: La Galera, 2018. – 140 p.
Train | Trip | Train station | Fantasy fiction
White Ravens issue: 2019
Reading age: 8+
Lia is not happy that her parents have sent her on her own to visit her grandmother in Quintaforca during the holidays. Quintaforca is boring, and she isn’t all that interested in hanging out with Grandma. The train ride starts strangely – Lia receives a “special ticket” for people who would rather not reach their destinations – and then things get even stranger. The train stops many times – but the question is: where?! There are no place names listed at the train stations. Also, the locations themselves are very odd: At one location, the buildings shine with all the colours of the rainbow; at another, the road signs are ultra-precise, listing distances to destinations down to the millimetre; at a third, people are only allowed to ask a question once one they have already heard the answer to it. Featuring lively coloured illustrations, this episodic children’s novel blurs the lines between reality and dream. It is a very entertaining read, thanks to the many imaginative ideas and lively conversations that transpire between Lia and the people whom she encounters along the way.