Summary and book reviews of The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

by Kate DiCamillo, Bagram Ibatoulline

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo, Bagram Ibatoulline
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  • First Published:
    Feb 2006, 228 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2008, 208 pages

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Book Summary

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 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.

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 and Bagram Ibatoulline take 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 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.

Chapter One

Once, in a house on Egypt Street, there lived a rabbit who was made almost entirely of china. He had china arms and china legs, china paws and a china head, a china torso and a china nose. His arms and legs were jointed and joined by wire so that his china elbows and china knees could be bent, giving him much freedom of movement.

His ears were made of real rabbit fur, and beneath the fur, there were strong, bendable wires, which allowed the ears to be arranged into poses that reflected the rabbit's mood - jaunty, tired, full of ennui. His tail, too, was made of real rabbit fur and was fluffy and soft and well shaped.

The rabbit's name was Edward Tulane, and he was tall. He measured almost three feet from the tip of his ears to the tip of his feet; his eyes were painted a penetrating and intelligent blue.

In all, Edward Tulane felt himself to be an exceptional specimen. Only his whiskers gave him pause. They were long and elegant (as ...

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!
"ONCE, IN A HOUSE ON EGYPT STREET, there lived a rabbit who was made almost entirely of china." So begins The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane. That elegantly attired rabbit was a seventh birthday present to Abilene Tulane from her grandmother, Pellegrina. Every morning, Abilene, who is now ten, dresses Edward in one of his extraordinary handmade silk suits and hats and winds his gold pocket watch. She sits him at the dinner table each evening, and she tucks him into his own bed each night. 

"I love you, Edward," she tells him before going to sleep.

Edward never says anything in response, even though Abilene half expects him to, since of course he cannot speak. Nor does he particularly feel...
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Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

To an adult reader the storyline of Edward Tulane is fairly predictable but the writing is anything but. DiCamillo's art is to play our heart strings like a maestro using the vocabulary of a third-grader.   (Reviewed by BookBrowse Review Team).

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Media Reviews

School Library Journal - Allison Gray

Starred Review. The tender look at the changes from arrogance to grateful loving is perfectly delineated. Ibatoullines lovely sepia-toned gouache illustrations and beautifully rendered color plates are exquisite. An ever-so-marvelous tale. Grades 3-6

Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. There will be inevitable comparison of Edward Tulane to The Velveteen Rabbit, and Margery Williams's classic story can still charm after 83 years. But as delightful as it is, it can't match the exquisite language, inventive plot twists, and memorable characters of DiCamillo's tale.

Booklist - Ilene Cooper

Starred Review. 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. Grades 2-4

Kirkus Reviews

Somewhere between fairy tale and fable, DiCamillo spins the tale of Edward, transformed by the lives he touches. The reader will be transformed too. Sumptuous gouache illustrations complement the old-fashioned, dramatic narrative. Keep the tissues handy for this one. Ages 7+

Reader Reviews

roger

Edward Tulane
Amazing!

rocelynn

best book
This book is so good! There were some parts that weren't so good, but I love this book for little children.

sydney

the best book ever
I had a book I loved, it was call the Naked Mole Rat Letters; I read the book 11 times, but now this is my favorite book. Thank you Kate for this book!

lolly

Love it totally
It is sad but it helps people learn a very good lesson indeed.

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Beyond the Book

Edward Tulane was inspired by a very elegant rabbit "doll" given to Kate by a friend for Christmas a couple of years ago. She says, "Not long after receiving the rabbit, I had this very clear image of him underwater, on the bottom of the sea, minus all of his finery, lost and alone."

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