The Tale of Despereaux
Author: Kate DiCamillo
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Candlewick Press, 2003.
The Tale of Despereaux is the story of a tiny, big-eared mouse who was born with bigger dreams than just being a regular mouse. He doesn’t want to do regular mouse activities, but instead wants to listen to music and be with his true love, the Princess Pea. Unfortunately, the other mice can’t understand his desires, and banish him to the dungeon. It is here he becomes entangled in Roscuro the rat’s evil plan to punish the Princess for a chain of events that banished him forever to the basement and must find the courage he has lacked to save her.
This book is a great take on a fairy tale. The book is very well written, and introduces a lot of new vocabulary to younger readers. Its narrative engages the reader and encourages them to try to understand the background and reasons behind each characters actions. It is a fun story about courage and how our actions have consequences beyond what we might imagine.
Reading level: 5-6th Grade
Personal thoughts- A fun adventure filled read
Subjects/themes- Adventure, Fairy Tales, Mice, Courage
Awards- 2004 Newberry Medal
Dexpereaux Tilling- a tiny big eared mouse who falls in love with the Princess Pea and has to save her
Princess Pea- the beautiful princess of the kingdom
Roscuro- a rat who wanted to live in light, but his search for it creates the tragedy that leads to the adventures of Despereaux
Miggery Sow- a young girl who wants to be a princess, and is led astray by Roscuro
Annotation: The story of how one small mouse battled enormous odds to save his true love.