The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo
Illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline
Genre: Middle Grade
Maturity Level: 1
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Once, in a house on Egypt Street, there lived a china rabbit named Edward Tulane. The rabbit was very pleased with himself, and for good reason: he was owned by a girl named Abilene, who treated him with the utmost care and adored him completely.
And then, one day, he was lost.
Kate DiCamillo takes us on an extraordinary journey, from the depths of the ocean to the net of a fisherman, from the top of a garbage heap to the fireside of a hoboes’ camp, from the bedside of an ailing child to the bustling streets of Memphis. And along the way, we are shown a true miracle — that even a heart of the most breakable kind can learn to love, to lose, and to love again.
Kate DiCamillo’s books are always whimsical and heartwarming and never fail to make me cry. Edward Tulane was no exception.
As I was reading this book I found myself really bothered by a lot of the little details. I found the vocabulary unnecessarily antiquated. I hated the way she used the word “hobo”. (Is there really not a kinder word?) I couldn’t tell what time period the book is meant to take place in, though the illustrations vaguely indicate the past. The whole thing is pretty moralizing.
But no matter how much I told myself I didn’t like the book, I just … DID. Kate DiCamillo is so good at making you feel things. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t cry at the end.
DiCamillo’s strength has always been writing characters, especially secondary characters. Each one has their own personality, and Edward learns something different from everybody. In a way, this story is almost about everyone other than Edward. You see their world through his eyes.
I can’t not recommend this story. It’s whimsy and charm make it a perfect read-aloud. Great for fans of Charlotte’s Web or Frog and Toad.