Start by marking “The Tale of Despereaux” as Want to Read: A brave mouse, a covetous rat, a wishful serving girl, and a princess named Pea come together in Kate DiCamillo's Newbery Medal–winning tale. Welcome to the story of Despereaux Tilling, a mouse who is in love with music. Book one tells a story about a small, sickly mouse named Despereaux who was born in a castle with his eyes open. Welcome to the story of Despereaux Tilling, a mouse who is in love with music, stories, and a princess named Pea. It is also the story of a rat called Roscuro.
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A brave mouse, a covetous rat, a wishful serving girl, and a princess named Pea come together in Kate DiCamillo's Newbery Medal–winning tale. Welcome to. Read Common Sense Media's The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, This book is an excellent read-aloud or discussion group book. It could . Praise. DiCamillo "sets the stage for a battle between the forces of Darkness and Light in THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX, and the book is a terrific, bravura.
Despereaux is seen by the mouse council, who mistake him for a ghost because he is covered in flour from sleeping on the flour sack. Despereaux forgives his father, upon the latter's request, for sentencing him to the dungeon, before mocking the rest of the council. Despereaux goes on to seek the King.
Despereaux tells the King that he knows that Pea is in the dungeon, but the King refuses to believe him because Despereaux is related distantly to the rats. Despereaux then goes to Hovis, the thread master. Hovis gives him an entire spool of red thread and a sewing needle to serve as a sword for his quest to the dungeons.
On his way, he runs into Cook, who has grown so anxious from Pea's disappearance she has resorted to breaking the law and making soup. Instead of attacking Despereaux, she offers him some soup before seeing him off. Mig, meanwhile, learns that Roscuro tricked her into helping him kidnap Pea and that she will never be a princess. Roscuro plans for Pea to remain locked in the dungeons, so that he can marvel over her brightly colored dress, but Despereaux arrives to save Pea and Mig chops Roscuro's tail off with the knife when he refuses to show them the way back.
However, many rats arrive on the scene because they followed the smell of Despereaux, and the soup he recently ate. Despereaux threatens to kill Roscuro with the sewing needle. Roscuro, catching a whiff of the soup left on Despereaux's whiskers, realizes he does not truly want to hurt anyone and begins crying.
Pea offers that if Roscuro lets her go, she will treat him with some soup. Roscuro agrees. Botticelli and the other rats are so disgusted by the happiness of all that is happening that they return to the darkness. Despereaux and Pea become close friends.
The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread
Because even in this strange world, a mouse and princess can not marry. Roscuro is allowed access into the upstairs of the castle, and reunites Mig's father, a prisoner in the dungeons, with his daughter.
Mig's father promises that he loves Mig and will never leave her. But before this, however, Roscuro, Mig, the King, Pea, and Despereaux all get together for soup, as Despereaux's friend Hovis, his parents, and his brother watch in amazement behind the scenes.
Characters[ edit ] Despereaux Tilling - The lonely character of the story, Despereaux was born as a castle mouse and the only living mouse of his mother's latest litter. Named for the despairs and sadness of that time, Despereaux is an oddball among the mouse community from birth, as he is born with a small body, giant ears, and open eyes. He grows up to be very different from the other mice, choosing to read books instead of eating them, and not learning to scurry like other mice.
He becomes fascinated by a fairy tale about a beautiful princess and an armored knight and learns from ideas like chivalry and courage from it, which his fearful elders dismiss as absurd.
Through his large ears, Despereaux is able to listen to the music that the king plays for his daughter Princess Pea, and because of this, he is able to meet and fall in love with the human princess. This behaviour, however, does not go undetected by the mice, and when he is sent to the dungeon Despereaux must rely on his wits, bravery, and inner strength in order to save himself and the princess.
Princess Pea - The Princess of Dor and the fifth child of the king and queen, Pea is a sharp-eyed and beautiful girl whom Despereaux grows to honour and love upon their first meeting and she also comes to adore the mouse. Though kind-hearted and loved by the people of the castle, Pea is often overcome with loneliness after her mother's death.
Because of her title as a princess, Pea is not used to being told what to do and sometimes takes slight offense when someone does not appreciate her for her title.
However, when her past actions cause her kidnapping, Pea comes to use her forgiveness, good nature, and place as royalty for the good of the other characters. Chiaroscuro known as "Roscuro" - Chiaroscuro was born innocent among the evil rats of the castle dungeon some years before Despereaux.
Because of a match-related reprimand from the jailer, Roscuro did not act like a rat, afraid of the light. He comes to be fascinated by light and goodness, despite objections from fellow rats.
However, his love of light causes the death of the queen, resulting in his plot to take revenge on the humans by kidnapping Princess Pea.
In the end, it is through the actions of Despereaux and the princess and Roscuro's own true love for light that he finds his self-redemption. Miggery "Mig" Sow - Born in the countryside of Dor, Miggery Sow was an often a mistreated child, since nobody around her cared much for what she wanted.
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Her mother died when she was very young and soon after, her father sold her to a man whom she was forced to call "Uncle". Miggery Sow had to work for the man to whom she was sold for many years with little or no thanks.
The man would also give her "clouts to the ear," rendering her almost completely deaf. Despite her harsh life, Miggery remained a well-meaning albeit simple-minded child. On her seventh birthday, an accidental meeting with the royal family causes Miggery to dream of becoming a princess.
When she turns twelve, she is rescued from slavery by the soldiers of the castle, and she is given the position of serving-maid in the castle itself, befriending Princess Pea but becoming an unintentional pawn in Roscuro's plan. Botticelli Remorso - Botticelli is a very old one-eared rat who lives in the dungeon and is suspicious of Roscuro and his ability.
Botticelli believes that the meaning of life is suffering, specifically the suffering of others and that Roscuro should take action and become a part of the rat community. He had taken a golden heart-shaped locket from a prisoner and hung it on a thin braided rope. Whenever he speaks, the locket moves.
Botticelli is evil and wishes for the princess to die. Later in the book, he leads Despereaux to the princess in order to kill him later and intends on feeding the princess to his army of malicious rats. Merlot - The sister of Despereaux. Mig's desire to be a princess, a rat's yen for soup a food banished from the kingdom after a rat fell in a bowl and killed the queen , and Despereaux's quest to save his princess after she is kidnapped climax in a classic fairy tale, rich and satisfying.
Part of the charm comes from DiCamillo's deceptively simple style and short chapters in which the author addresses the reader: All living things have a heart. Ering's soft pencil illustrations reflect the story's charm.
Booklist , starred review.
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The melodramatic voice of the narrator glides through DiCamillo's entirely pleasing tale … And so unwinds a tale with twists and turns, full of forbidden soup and ladles, rats lusting for mouse blood, a servant who wishes to be a princess, a knight in shining—or at least furry—armor, and all the ingredients of an old-fashioned drama. Kirkus Reviews, starred review. Website copyright Kate DiCamillo.
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CHILDREN'S BOOKS; A World Without Soup
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