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The Tale of Despereaux | [Kate DiCamillo]

The Tale of Despereaux

This is the story of Despereaux Tilling, a mouse in love with music, stories, and a princess named Pea. It is also the story of a rat called Roscuro, who lives in darkness but covets a world filled with light. And it is the story of Miggery Sow, a slow-witted serving girl with a simple, impossible wish. These characters are about to embark on a journey that will lead them down into a horrible dungeon, up into a glittering castle, and ultimately, into each other's lives.
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Audible Editor Reviews

What is it about mice? Ever since Aesop paired a little rodent with a mighty lion, mice have been the stars of literature. Stuart Little, the gallant Reepicheep of the Narnia books, the heroes of Redwall - mice all.

Now comes Despereaux, and he does his fore-mice proud. This is a wistful story that is given a properly dreamlike reading by Graeme Malcolm. You can imagine him sitting by a crackling fire as he tells the tale of a misfit, sensitive mouse who falls in love with a princess and finds his place in the world.

At 3-1/2 hours long, this is the perfect listen for a family trip. It's the kind of story that parents will appreciate for the lessons it imparts - and children will cherish for its memorable adventures of a determined mouse.

Publisher's Summary

This is the story of Despereaux Tilling, a mouse in love with music, stories, and a princess named Pea. It is also the story of a rat called Roscuro, who lives in darkness but covets a world filled with light. And it is the story of Miggery Sow, a slow-witted serving girl with a simple, impossible wish. These characters are about to embark on a journey that will lead them down into a horrible dungeon, up into a glittering castle, and ultimately, into each other's lives.

And what happens then?

Listener, it is your destiny to find out.

Click here to see a full list of Newbery Medal Winners and Newbery Honor Books.

©2003 Kate DiCamillo; (P)2003 Random House, Inc., Listening Library, an imprint of the Random House Audio Publishing Group

What the Critics Say

  • Newbery Medal Winner, 2004, Most Distinguished American Children's Book

"A charming story of unlikely heroes....With a masterful hand, DiCamillo weaves four story lines together in a witty, suspenseful narrative that begs to be read aloud....This expanded fairy tale is entertaining, heartening, and, above all, great fun." (School Library Journal)
"Forgiveness, light, love, and soup. These essential ingredients combine into a tale that is as soul stirring as it is delicious." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (449 )
5 star
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4.4 (170 )
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Story
4.6 (164 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Joanne 08-24-15
    Joanne 08-24-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Excellent story. Excellent narration"

    Great story for children and amazingly well narrated.
    We were riveted and sad when it was finished

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 07-02-15 Member Since 2015
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    "My kiddos loved it!"

    Downloaded on a whim,but will never regret the decision. We loved it and will probably re-listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy Spooner 04-07-15
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    "review 1"

    I had no expectations of the author only of the fact that it is a Newberry Award Book. I did like the idea of the narrator addressing the "listener" as it did seem to bring me in a little closer. Personally, I wasn't thrilled with the story and its magic, but I do think my elementary students will love the 'rats, dungeon, and the ugly peasant girl Meg'.

    The narration was lovely; an easy voice to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lori M 03-16-15
    Lori M 03-16-15 Member Since 2015
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    3
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    "A story of love, hope, and forgiveness"

    "Not all stories are of sweetness and light" the narrator says. As such, this story is a reflection of life, and the delicate balance of light and darkness that is part of the human experience. Graeme Malcome is a captivating story teller, drawing you in as he speaks directly to you "the listener ".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tiffani Stinson 01-27-15
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    "Wonderful "

    Great! My child loved it and I did too! Narration is soothing and a great story teller.would recommend to ages nine and up!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth 01-08-15
    Elizabeth 01-08-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Wonderful book!!"

    We loved it!! My 10 year old and my 12 year old enjoyed it very much!! Excellent narration!! Incredible descriptions!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jingbo 04-17-13
    Jingbo 04-17-13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    2
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    "Complete Satisfaction"
    What made the experience of listening to The Tale of Despereaux the most enjoyable?

    The vocabulary and heartwarming characters, and its beautiful narrations.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It made me want to laugh at every word and cry at every sentence. Every single word this author used was ingenious and captivated me to the point where I believed entirely that I would weep at even the happiest ending.


    Any additional comments?

    There are those books and movies that make you want to cry and laugh and makes your insides twist and flutter at the same time. This is one of those books. Trust me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brooke Memphis, TN USA 12-30-12
    Brooke Memphis, TN USA 12-30-12 Member Since 2010

    Brooke

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    "Better read as a book than an audiobook."
    Would you try another book from Kate DiCamillo and/or Graeme Malcolm?

    This story becomes cumbersome when listened to. I believe it would be better to read in a traditional book. I became very tired of hearing the expression 'gaw' (or 'caw') from one of the main characters. It became extremely distracting. The story line is difficult to follow in the four books when listening instead of reading traditionally.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Kate DiCamillo? Why or why not?

    I would rather read her books in the traditional fashion.


    What does Graeme Malcolm bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He did a good job of using different voices for the characters, but some of them sounded a bit odd or stilted at times.


    Did The Tale of Despereaux inspire you to do anything?

    It inspired me to write more.


    Any additional comments?

    I always think that books are better than the movies that are made of them, but in this case, I found the movie story line much more compelling and intriguing. This story, experienced as an audiobook, was slow and cumbersome in many points. It felt disjointed and difficult to follow.

    I do love the character of Despereaux and find him intriguing and inspiring.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    j 11-19-12
    j 11-19-12

    “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.” CS Lewis

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Delightful for whole family"
    Where does The Tale of Despereaux rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The best family-friendly audiobook we've heard yet.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Perfect listening for my 6 and 9 year olds. A bit too much for the 4 year old. Had just enough depth as well to keep adults well-interested.


    What about Graeme Malcolm’s performance did you like?

    Differentiated the various character's with nuance and proper passion.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It did make one member of the family cry at the end and there were many laughs throughout.


    Any additional comments?

    Great length for kids too - four hours or so? Perfect for road trip.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JANET 11-05-12
    JANET 11-05-12
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    "Fantastic"
    Would you listen to The Tale of Despereaux again? Why?

    I bought this for my 9 year old to listen to during the drive to and from school. He loved it. He didn't want to stop the story each morning. He couldn't wait to listen to what happened next.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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