The Railway Series is a series of books on which Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends is based on. It was made by Wilbert Awdry who created the stories when his wife, Margaret Awdry decided to get him to publish the books by a publisher since reading them to Christopher Awdry who had measles in 1943. The Railway Series takes place on the Island of Sodor but the first twenty-six books were made by Wilbert Awdry with illustrations by C. Reginald Dalby, John T. Kenney and Peter and Gunvor Edwards. The sixteen books were made by Christopher Awdry and were illustrated by Clive Spong.
The Three Railway Engines was first made by Reverend Awdry, but illustrated by William Middleton and later, C. Reginald Dalby due to Awdry's anger with Middleton over Henry's Tunnel. Reginald Payne also illustrated Thomas the Tank Engine which Dalby later re-created. Dalby finally got to do the illustrations of James the Red Engine until reaching Percy the Small Engine which he resigned due to an offensive quote from Awdry's mouth came out accidentally. John T. Kenney did only six books for Awdry to do, but later resigned due to his eyesight failing at most times in his life and Peter and Gunvor Edwards did Awdry's works until Tramway Engines which Awdry claimed that is his last book to do.
Really Useful Engines was first made by Christopher Awdry and illustrated by Clive Spong. Reverend Awdry was delighted that he called that book the title he wanted. In 1986, the Reverend's son was asked by Britt Allcroft to use the material to be in Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends. This was approved within the second season for More About Thomas the Tank Engine, but both Really Useful Engines and Toby, Trucks and Trouble were in the fourth season. After the 50th anniversary of The Railway Series, Thomas and Victoria and Thomas and his Friends were published in both 2007 and 2011 after a ten year hiatus. Three episodes from More About Thomas the Tank Engine was narrated by Ringo Starr, while Michael Angelis had narrated three stories: two from 1983 and one from 1988 for the television series in both 1986 and 1995.