The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo (076361722-9)
This is a magical story that will catch readers up and send them on an adventure that all takes place within one castle. It is the story of a tiny young mouse who falls in love with a princess named Pea. It is the story of a rat who falls in love with light but lives in darkness. It is the story of Miggery Sow who is never asked what she wants. And it is also the story of soup and thread.
From the opening section of the book, I was caught up in the story, wondering what twist was coming next and what fascinating character would be revealed. This book is completely charming. From its lengthy subtitle to its old-fashioned phrasing, it evokes books of fairy tales. This effect is even taken down to its very binding with a book jacket that looks like leather to rough edged pages.
Definitely worth reading, and one that will sing when read aloud. I would recommend this for reading aloud in elementary school, sharing before bedtime, and of course curling up with the magic alone on your lap. Both boys and girls will enjoy this. A definite gem.