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The Tale of Despereaux

by Kate DiCamillo
This superbly suspenseful tale of a little mouse with big aspirations is winner of the 2004 Newbery Medal. 187 pages, Ages 9-14

Item Number: 1006
Category:Contracted Braille in UEB

Price: $18.00
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Reviews for The Tale of Despereaux
5I just finished reading this one out loud to my daughter (5 years old) and it was a HUGE hit, even though I think it was really meant for older kids who can read it on their own. It is the story of a lonely little mouse, rejected by his family, who falls in love with the young Princess who rules the castles in which he lives.

Here are some reasons we really liked the book:

1) DiCamillo is a true romantic; Despereaux the mouse loves Pea the Princess with a love that is overwhelming and courtly (like a medieval knight), a love that makes him want to be a better person. At the same time, the author is not afraid to toss in some real Adventure and even Peril - the mouse must brave the dungeon, its murderous clan of rats, and a sad but frightening orphan girl named Miggery Sow who means to kidnap the princess and take her place. Scary enough to be exciting but not scary enough for nightmares.

2) Although DiCamillo's writing style is highly sophisticated, she stops along the way to explain the unusual and interesting words she uses ("perfidy," for one), so the book is comprehensible even to kids too young to read it themselves.

5I have looked everywhere for a Braille version of this marvelous story and have not found it till now. Thank you for making this book available.

Despereaux Tilling is a young mouse born in the walls of a large castle. He is "the big disappointment" to his family. Instead of behaving as a sensible mouse should, (nibbling paper, scrounging for choice tidbits and scurrying), he'd rather read and listen to music. When Princess Pea, whom Despereaux has loved from afar, is in danger, the brave mouse must do all he can to save her.

This book introduces many unforgettable characters including an empathetic villain named Roscuro who, though living in a world of darkness and consuming anger, craves a world of light.

Ms. DiCamillo's writing s almost melodic and conversational in tone. You feel as if you are listening to the story being related to you by a kind grandmother or old friend. I implore you to buy this book. You will not be disappointed. God bless you all.


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