7: The Tale of Despereaux

tale of despereaux cover


“We’ll love you forever, Kate!” In this episode, we review the 2004 Newbery medal winner, The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo. Once again, we are swept away by Kate’s masterful use of words to engage our emotions and tell a beautiful story of sorrow, courage, revenge, forgiveness, and love. In spite of our own personal weariness and slight improvisation of this episode, we had a lovely time discussing this book!

Show notes:

  • Mandy has not finished reading any books in the past month (Big surprise!)
  • Is Stuart Little a mouse or a person who looks like a mouse? What is happening in this book?
  • Lauren and Leah have begun watching the Netflix Original Series Anne with an E…and they love it so far!
  • Leah found a treasure at a garage sale! “Pamela’s First Musical” by Wendy Wasserstein!
  • Leah’s new mission is to read all of Kate DiCamillo’s books!
  • The movie Boss Baby is based on a book! Who knew? We sure didn’t!
  • We are all looking forward to the next illustrated edition in the Harry Potter series: The Prisoner of Azkaban! Coming October of this year!
  • The 1963 Newbery medal winner is being adapted to film!
  • Mandy shares her efficiency at procrastination.
  • Kate’s inspiration for The Tale of Despereaux: a little boy and Charles Dickens (side note: Mandy has read parts of several Dickens books)
  • The importance of including tragedy and darkness in children’s books
  • Princess Pea: not a main character, but very important to this story
  • Chiaroscuro – a hard name to pronounce
  • “You can flip with us!”
  • Extreme punishments: “This person is weird, so they must be a witch! Let’s kill them!”
  • Word of the Book: Perfidy
  • Lauren sees similarities in how Despereaux is treated by the mouse community and the early Church in the book of Acts.
  • Lauren questions Mandy’s sincerity
  • Leah tries to be a psychologist *insert winky face*
  • Mandy uses the “p” word
  • The wisdom and insight of the Threadmaster
  • Some broken hearts become crooked hearts
  • Lauren takes issue with the stereotypes in this book
  • Misery is hard to look at, but it is part of existence
  • We discuss the difference between encouraging your children to follow their dreams and giving them false hope
  • Forgiveness melts hearts
  • “Love is ridiculous”
  • Leah points out the ridiculousness (from our human perspective) of God’s love and forgiveness for His children
  • Our Stuart Little theory
  • “Isn’t it??”
  • What’s actually important
  • We discuss the movie adaptation of this book. Our opinion: It’s not bad
  • Vegetable genie, feminism, and lightheartedness
  • Lauren’s rant on movie adaptations of books
  • Poor Percy Jackson
  • “Sigourney Weaver says, …”
  • Non-fiction Newbery winners. It is also at this point in the episode that we begin to go crazy, and Leah tries her best to keep us on track.
  • Mandy’s car has hail damage. RIP, Mandy’s car!
  • “Thank you, Madison County!” (It is actually just Madison the city, not the county)
  • Good job, Neil! (Gaiman)
  • Leah tells us what we will be reading next! Hint: It has something to do with a bridge.
  • We take a rabbit trail and explore Katherine Paterson’s Facebook page and some of her works
  • “Have you been listening to us talk, Mandy???”
  • The treasure that is used books

Links related to this episode:

Amazon link to purchase The Tale of Despereauxhttp://amzn.to/2r3Motz

A Wrinkle in Time movie: http://www.comingsoon.net/movie/a-wrinkle-in-time-2018#/slide/1

Link to Pre-order the illustrated version of The Prisoner of Azkaban: http://amzn.to/2pWSqMn

Interviews with Kate DiCamillo:





List of Kate DiCamillo’s books: http://www.paperbackswap.com/Kate-Dicamillo/author/

Kate DiCamillo’s Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/KateDiCamillo/

“What Should I Read Next?” podcast: http://modernmrsdarcy.com/what-should-i-read-next/

Olive’s Ocean by Kevin Henkes https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/282773.Olive_s_Ocean?from_search=true

An American Plague by Jim Murphy  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/46727.An_American_Plague?from_search=true

Madison Public Library list of Newbery Winners  http://www.madisonpubliclibrary.org/kids/booklists/newbery-winners

Katherine Paterson’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/terabithia/

Intro Music: “Feeling Good” by Royalty Free Copyright Music
Ending Music: “Ukelele” by Royalty Free Music from Bensound

*We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s