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The Tale of Despereaux by Kate Dicamillo

The Tale of Despereaux (original 2003; edition 2003)

by Kate Dicamillo, Timothy B Ering (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
8,294438377 (4.1)208
Title:The Tale of Despereaux
Authors:Kate Dicamillo
Other authors:Timothy B Ering (Illustrator)
Info:Scholastic (2003), Paperback, 269 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Newbery Award, Medieval Times

Work details

The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup and a Spool of Thread by Kate DiCamillo (2003)


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» See also 208 mentions

English (436)  German (2)  All (438)
Showing 1-5 of 436 (next | show all)
This story is about a mouse who wants to be hero and save the princess so he sets out on a journey. The mouse (despereaux) does not let his size get in the way. He goes through many adventures and challenges through the story and wins in the end. THis is a great book to show little ones that nothing should stop them from achieving their dreams. ( )
  dsw021 | May 1, 2017 |
A very sweet touching story of a brave little mouse. Better than the movie (of course). ( )
  nx74defiant | Apr 30, 2017 |
This is a story about a mouse and his journey and adventures on the way to becoming a hero. The author did a great job of developing the characters and creating a complex plot. This is a great book to teach children about perseverance and courage. ( )
  A_Whitney | Apr 28, 2017 |
The Tale of Despereaux is a story of a little mouse named Despereaux who goes on a journey after her meets Princess Pea. He falls in love with her and ends up breaking the mouse law because he talks to a human. He is then sent to the dungeon where he is supposed to eaten by rats. He takes off on a journey to save Princess Pea and shows just because he is little doesn’t mean he cannot be strong.
Personal Reaction
I was excited to read this book. I had seen the movie a long time ago and has forgotten that it was a book. I think it is a good twist on what a fairytale normally has been. This time the mouse isn’t just the sidekick but the hero.
Extension Ideas
This would be a very good book for doing character trait charts because each character is different in their own way. This can be achieved by the character charts of doing diagrams on how the characters are similar or different.
  CaitlinOH_22 | Apr 23, 2017 |
The Tale of Despereaux is a unique collection of tales that intertwine to create a complex story. This is the story of an unlikely hero and the many people and things that happened at just the right time for the story. This story teaches the power of courage and perseverance despite the circumstances. This book also exposes young readers to complex vocabulary and ideas. ( )
  Cayetlin_Hardeman | Apr 16, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 436 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (11 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kate DiCamilloprimary authorall editionscalculated
Ering, Timothy BasilIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Malcolm, GraemeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The world is dark, and light is precious. Come closer, dear reader. You must trust me. I am telling you a story.
For Luke, who asked for the story of an unlikely hero
First words
This story begins within the walls of a castle, with the birth of a mouse.
There are those hearts, reader, that never mend again once they are broken. Or if they do mend, they heal themselves in a crooked and lopsided way, as if sewn together by a careless craftsman.
Reader, you must know that an interesting fate (sometimes involving rats, sometimes not) awaits almost everyone, mouse or man, who does not conform.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
I enjoyed the book. I think it would be a good book to read with young children ages 9 and up. The story skips around a lot. Children may benefit from keeping a timeline of events as they read the story, and they will see how it all comes together. I think the idea of forgiveness is major theme of the book, and can be used to help children connect with the concept of forgiveness and what that means to them.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0763625299, Paperback)

Kate DiCamillo, author of the Newbery Honor book Because of Winn-Dixie, spins a tidy tale of mice and men where she explores the "powerful, wonderful, and ridiculous" nature of love, hope, and forgiveness. Her old-fashioned, somewhat dark story, narrated "Dear Reader"-style, begins "within the walls of a castle, with the birth of a mouse." Despereaux Tilling, the new baby mouse, is different from all other mice. Sadly, the romantic, unmouselike spirit that leads the unusually tiny, large-eared mouse to the foot of the human king and the beautiful Princess Pea ultimately causes him to be banished by his own father to the foul, rat-filled dungeon.

The first book of four tells Despereaux's sad story, where he falls deeply in love with Princess Pea and meets his cruel fate. The second book introduces another creature who differs from his peers--Chiaroscuro, a rat who instead of loving the darkness of his home in the dungeon, loves the light so much he ends up in the castle& in the queen's soup. The third book describes young Miggery Sow, a girl who has been "clouted" so many times that she has cauliflower ears. Still, all the slow-witted, hard-of-hearing Mig dreams of is wearing the crown of Princess Pea. The fourth book returns to the dungeon-bound Despereaux and connects the lives of mouse, rat, girl, and princess in a dramatic denouement.

Children whose hopes and dreams burn secretly within their hearts will relate to this cast of outsiders who desire what is said to be out of their reach and dare to break "never-to-be-broken rules of conduct." Timothy Basil Ering's pencil illustrations are stunning, reflecting DiCamillo's extensive light and darkness imagery as well as the sweet, fragile nature of the tiny mouse hero who lives happily ever after. (Ages 9 and older) --Karin Snelson

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:57:50 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

The adventures of Desperaux Tilling, a small mouse of unusual talents, the princess that he loves, the servant girl who longs to be a princess, and a devious rat determined to bring them all to ruin.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 8 descriptions

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Candlewick Press

3 editions of this book were published by Candlewick Press.

Editions: 0763625299, 0763617229, 0763629286

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