I first read “The Miraculous Adventure of Edward Tulane” by Kate DiCamillo (ages 8 – 12) shortly after it was released, and I fell in love after the first few pages. It reads like an instant classic. Since then I have read it to my Book Baby and she”ll happily tell you it’s her favorite book of all time.
It a modern(ish) fable about an arrogant rabbit who learns the true and sometimes difficult meaning of love.
The Library Journal says, “As she did in her Newbery Medal Book, The Tale of Despereaux (2004), DiCamillo tucks important messages into this story and once more plumbs the mystery of the heart–or, in this case, the heartless.
Edward Tulane is a china rabbit with an extensive wardrobe. He belongs to 10-year-old Abilene, who thinks almost as highly of Edward as Edward does of himself. Even young children will soon realize that Edward is riding for a fall. And fall he does, into the sea, after mean boys rip him from Abilene’s hands during an ocean voyage.
Thus begins Edward’s journey from watery grave to the gentle embrace of a fisherman’s wife, to the care of a hobo and his dog, and into the hands of a dying girl. Then, pure meanness breaks Edward apart, and love and sacrifice put him back together–until just the right child finds him.
With every person who touches him, Edward’s heart grows a little bit softer and a little bit bigger. Bruised and battered, Edward is at his most beautiful, and beautiful is a fine word to describe the artwork. (Artist) Ibatoulline outdoes himself; his precisely rendered sepia-tone drawings and color plates of high artistic merit are an integral part of this handsomely designed package.
Yet even standing alone, the story soars because of DiCamillo’s lyrical use of language and her understanding of universal yearnings. This will be a pleasure to read aloud.”