The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

by Kate DiCamillo (2006)

Also available in Spanish.

Kate DiCamillo, winner of two Newbery Awards for The Tale of Despereaux and Flora and Ulysses (and a Newbery Honor for Because of Winn-Dixie), offers us a special tale with the deeper markings of a classic, a book likely to be in print generations from now.

DiCamillo has the special talent to gently weave subtler and darker emotions into settings and stories that are essentially eccentric, charming, and sweet.  With Edward Tulane, she takes the melancholy from Litmus Lozenges, and brings us a fable, a series of weaved lessons that can benefit adults as much as children.

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane is a story about a china rabbit who is beloved by one child, and meets that love with indifference.  He then endures an odyssey of personal and emotional self-discovery.  Harkening back to The Velveteen Rabbit, DiCamillo dives deep into the voyage of Edward’s heart, not just his china body.

Edward meets a broad range of lonely characters from all walks of life along his journey.  From Nellie the fisherman’s wife, to Bull the itinerant traveler, to Sarah Ruth the sickly child, each temporary owner adds to Edward’s understanding of his place in the world and his need for love.

Along this journey, children and families will benefit from Kate DiCamillo’s mysterious, beguiling, haunting prose. She creates quiet, quick, poetic set pieces, while Edward struggles to understand the parting words of his first owner’s curious grandmother.  And the emotional effect of DiCamillo’s prose is magnified by the haunting illustrations of Bagram Ibatoulline.

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane is not a cheerful book, but it is bursting with well-earned, hard-fought love. It has charmed scores of One School, One Book schools looking for a deeper story and taught their students and families magical lessons.  Let Edward’s miraculous journey charm and awe your families and show them the emotional power to be wrung from the most unexpected places – a children’s novel about a porcelain rabbit.

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