Silver Packages: An Appalachian Christmas Story

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Orchard Books, 1997 - Juvenile Fiction - 32 pages
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In Appalachia each Christmas, a boy named Frankie waits beside the tracks for the Christmas Train, which will bring presents to the children who live in coal towns and hollows. Year after year, Frankie hopes that one particular gift -- one very special gift -- will be tossed to him from that train. And it is this enduring hope that will guide him to the true meaning of the season. Cynthia Rylant's story about expectation and the transforming power of kindness first appeared in her acclaimed collection Children of Christmas. Now gloriously illustrated by Chris K. Soentpiet with watercolor paintings of glistening trains and snow-covered hills, it shines all the more brightly.

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About the author (1997)

As a child in West Virginia, Newbery Medalist Cynthia Rylant devoured comic books and paperback romances. She never dreamed of being a writer until she took one college English class. Then she became "hooked on great writing...I didn't know about this part of me until I went to college--didn't know that I loved beautiful stories." One night, inspired by the Southern writer, James Agee, she wrote her first picture book, When I Was Young in the Mountains, which was an instant success. Since then, she's written more than 60 children's books and received numerous awards, including the Newbery and the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award. With simplicity and grace, Rylant's books explore such subjects as aging, the trials of spirituality, the loss of a loved one, and the spirit and integrity of family life with all its joys and hardships. Rylant has said, "Books alter our hearts." Her books are a testament to this promise. Rylant lives in the Pacific Northwest. For more information about Cynthia Rylant, visit:

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