Wow, I really enjoyed this preview! Though I enjoy WWII fiction it is a genre can that get stale. The Children's Train, however, feels fresh. I liked that it was set in Italy (instead of England or France as many WWII novels are set) and that the story picks up right after the war ends. I enjoy transitional points in history, so this is a story that bridges WWII and the Cold War in a country struggling to rebuild after the social and economic impacts of war.
I enjoyed our little protagonist. Having a child narrator in an adult novel is a challenge I rarely see done well, but this author has created a well-rounded boy with good balance of street smarts, observation, and inner dialogue while still preserving his naivety.
The plot moves at a good pace. It is fast enough I do not lose interest, but isn't so fast that I got lost.