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The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

Review

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

written by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline

Not only is Edward Tulane a special rabbit, being custom-made for 10-year-old Abilene Tulane by her grandmother Pellegrina, but Edward also knows that he is a wonderful piece of work. From his soft furry ears to his expensive silk outfits, he deserves all the attention showered upon him. He leads a life of luxury and indulgence as Abilene takes him everywhere and sweetly reminds him that she loves him. If it was not for a trip on an ocean liner and a terrible accident of being thrown overboard, Edward might have gone on being just his little selfish self. Instead he ends up laying face down on the bottom of the ocean for almost a year. It is during this time, before he is caught in an old fisherman's net, that he experiences his first feeling --- fear.

In the home of the fisherman and his wife, Edward develops a deep attachment for these gentle people. Misfortune befalls him again, however, and he ends up in a garbage dump. From there he is rescued by a tramp named Bull and his dog Lucy. Entering a life of great adventure he learns to enjoy the songs and stories from Bull and the other hobos.

And so he listened. And in his listening, his heart opened wide and then wider still.

After many blissful years with Bull and Lucy, he finds himself tossed into other chance meetings. At last a little boy decides that Edward is just what his sick four-year-old sister needs. Sara Ruth makes Edward realize he has a heart because it breaks when she dies.

Bryce, Sara Ruth's brother, proves to be one of the most tender of characters when he turns Edward's broken body over to a doll maker after the rabbits' head has been shattered. What can the little boy do --- keep the broken rabbit, or let it be restored to make another child happy? Bryce's sacrifice, in the face of his grief over his sister, is very touching. Finally, in the shop of the doll maker, Edward is unexpectedly discovered by someone who has always loved him.

Kate DiCamillo's little book about a china rabbit who learns the meaning of love is a winner through and through. Certainly children will want to hear it again and again. It has the classic qualities found in books like THE VELVETEEN RABBIT and THE LITTLE PRINCE. In other words, adults will love this story too. Its message of love and redemption is beautifully written by DiCamillo and stunningly illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline. If I could, I would scatter stars across this review of THE MIRACULOUS JOURNEY OF EDWARD TULANE. It is simply not to be missed.

Reviewed by Sally M. Tibbetts on February 14, 2006

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane
written by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline

  • Publication Date: February 14, 2006
  • Hardcover: 228 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick
  • ISBN-10: 0763625892
  • ISBN-13: 9780763625894