Based on a true story is this old-fashioned account from Tunnell (with George W. Chilcoat, The Children of Topaz, 1996, etc.), about five-year-old May's railroad journey via parcel post across the rugged Idaho mountains to visit her grandmother. Unable to purchase a first-class train ticket, May has 53Ã in stamps glued to the back of her coat and joins the packages and letters in the mail car. Even a cranky old conductor cannot deter May from making it to Grandma Mary's for lunch. A little-known detail in the history of the postal service inspired this 1914 period piece, and while children may wish for more suspense, the matter-of-fact telling is sure to bring quiet smiles as understanding dawns. Rand's illustrations of homey, wood-grained, braided-rug interiors and bundled-up wintry scenes bring warmth to the narrative; sepia-toned illustrations mimicking old photographs add to the notion of the book as part story, part historical record, while a photograph of the real Charlotte May Pierstorff appears on the jacket.