My school’s faculty book club decided to read the works of Kate DiCamillo this month. Even though I’d already read Flora & Ulysses, I wanted to read a few more of DiCamillo’s books for our meeting (which is tomorrow afternoon). Well, I only got around to reading one more, but it’s one that had been near the top of my to-read list for a while. That book is The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane. My third grade students have been reading this book in class for the past couple of years, so I figured it was a good pick–both for my book club and to discuss with my students.
Edward Tulane, a china rabbit with a posh life and a rather inflated view of himself, loves no one. He is adored, and that is enough for him. Edward, though, is about to take a somewhat unexpected adventure that will change everything. While traveling at sea with his owner, a sweet girl named Abilene, Edward is tossed overboard, and his real journey begins…
This once-pristine rabbit travels from the bottom of the ocean to a stinky garbage heap. From the backpack of a hobo to serving as a scarecrow in a field. From the loving arms of a sick little girl to dancing on the streets for pocket change. Through all of these circumstances–some good, some bad–Edward finally begins to understand what it truly means to love.
When Edward opens his heart to the joy, hope, and even pain of loving others, he may one day, miraculously find his way home.
When I first began reading this book, I didn’t expect a tale about a narcissistic toy rabbit to make me cry. How wrong I was. By the book’s conclusion, I was both mourning all of Edward’s losses and wishing for him to find a loving home. The ending of this unexpectedly emotional story had me at once jumping for joy and reaching for the tissues. I love it when that happens.
I can totally see why The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane is such a hit with my students. I just wish I’d read it sooner. I look forward to discussing this beautiful story with my book club tomorrow!