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The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane
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The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

4.7 740
by Kate DiCamillo, Bagram Ibatoulline (Illustrator)

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A timeless tale by the incomparable Kate DiCamillo, complete with stunning full-color plates by Bagram Ibatoulline, honors the enduring power of love.

"Someone will come for you, but first you must open your heart. . . ."

Once, in a house on Egypt Street, there lived a china rabbit named Edward Tulane. The rabbit was very pleased with himself,


A timeless tale by the incomparable Kate DiCamillo, complete with stunning full-color plates by Bagram Ibatoulline, honors the enduring power of love.

"Someone will come for you, but first you must open your heart. . . ."

Once, in a house on Egypt Street, there lived a china rabbit named Edward Tulane. The rabbit was very pleased with himself, and for good reason: he was owned by a girl named Abilene, who treated him with the utmost care and adored him completely.

And then, one day, he was lost.

Kate DiCamillo takes us on an extraordinary journey, from the depths of the ocean to the net of a fisherman, from the top of a garbage heap to the fireside of a hoboes' camp, from the bedside of an ailing child to the bustling streets of Memphis. And along the way, we are shown a true miracle — that even a heart of the most breakable kind can learn to love, to lose, and to love again.

Editorial Reviews

It all starts simply: A china rabbit, a house, and a girl. And then one day, the rabbit, who is named Edward Tulane, disappears and begins a miraculous journey. Newbery medalist Kate diCamillo and artist Bagram Ibatoulline have created a piercingly beautiful story about love, loss, and the power to love again.
Michael Patrick Hearn
DiCamillo's latest novel, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, may well be her best. It is an elegant volume of creamy pages with a handsome typeface and generous margins in a pale green binding. Bagram Ibatoulline's haunting color plates and sepia illustrations at the beginning of each chapter evoke the era of Andrew Wyeth, Howard Pyle and Maxfield Parrish. The novel is set in the storybook land of no specific time or locale. There are no annoying cellphones or Starbucks cafes. Not even the pictures give a clue to the exact period covered by the events. It could be the America of the Great Depression reconstructed on a vast Hollywood back lot.
— The New York Times
Publishers Weekly
Equal parts fantasy and old-fashioned heart-tugger, DiCamillo's (Because of Winn-Dixie) timeless tale about the adventures of a china rabbit proves fine material for family listening in the capable hands of actress Ivey, who brings deeper hues of emotion to an already colorfully original script. China rabbit Edward Tulane is a dapper, rather full-of-himself fellow, never appreciating the love heaped on him by his 10-year-old owner Abilene. But when Edward is tossed overboard during a trans-Atlantic voyage with Abilene's family, he discovers that his own complicated journey is just beginning. Ivey provides a stalwart, straightforward narration and additionally proves an agile player, delivering the accents and voices of the variegated cast that drifts in and out of Edward's life. As Ivey brings Edward's travels full circle, listeners will wholly believe his subtle yet magical transformation. Ages 7-up. (Feb.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Jennifer Stevens
Edward Tulane is not your ordinary, garden-variety rabbit. He is a china rabbit, made of the finest porcelain. He wears custom-made silk clothes and carries a small, golden pocket watch. Edward is the much-loved birthday gift of Abilene Tulane, 10, who includes him in all of the family's dinners and outings. However, Edward has a heart made of that same, cold china; he is conceited and selfish and doesn't seem to understand what love is. That is, until he is lost, having been thrown overboard by some rambunctious boys during the Tulane family's ocean journey. From there, Edward bounces from home to home, from one life to the next, as the book progresses. From lying on the ocean floor to traveling with a hobo to lying in the arms of a sick child, Edward learns about love and loss and why hope is always important to have. This is a brilliant story about the importance and challenges of true love and friendship. Newbery-Award winning author Kate DiCamillo presents a riveting plot that is wonderfully complemented by illustrator Bagram Ibatoulline's exquisite illustrations.
Children's Literature
This is the somewhat improbable story of Edward Tulane, the china rabbit adored by young Abilene, who finds himself tossed overboard during a sea journey that becomes far more than a mere ocean crossing. Edward's fate is to be passed from person to person, sometimes loved, sometimes hated. Along the way Edward begins to understand what love and caring for someone means as he sees what life is like with it and without it. This circular story may appear a bit contrived, but it is more an allegory than a straightforward fantasy. The prose is spare and considered, and the characters are fully drawn and complete. A further treat is Bagram Ibatoulline's artwork throughout the text. Lush and elegant, it lends Edward the dignity he so richly deserves. 2006, Candlewick, Ages 7 to 10.
—Joan Kindig, Ph.D.
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-This achingly beautiful story shows a true master of writing at her very best. Edward Tulane is an exceedingly vain, cold-hearted china rabbit owned by 10-year-old Abilene Tulane, who dearly loves him. Her grandmother relates a fairy tale about a princess who never felt love; she then whispers to Edward that he disappoints her. His path to redemption begins when he falls overboard during the family's ocean journey. Sinking to the bottom of the sea where he will spend 297 days, Edward feels his first emotion-fear. Caught in a fisherman's net, he lives with the old man and his wife and begins to care about his humans. Then their adult daughter takes him to the dump, where a dog and a hobo find him. They ride the rails together until Edward is cruelly separated from them. His heart is truly broken when next owner, four-year-old Sarah Ruth, dies. He recalls Abilene's grandmother with a new sense of humility, wishing she knew that he has learned to love. When his head is shattered by an angry man, Edward wants to join Sarah Ruth but those he has loved convince him to live. Repaired by a doll store owner, he closes his heart to love, as it is too painful, until a wise doll tells him that he that he must open his heart for someone to love him. This superb book is beautifully written in spare yet stirring language. The tender look at the changes from arrogance to grateful loving is perfectly delineated. Ibatoulline's lovely sepia-toned gouache illustrations and beautifully rendered color plates are exquisite. An ever-so-marvelous tale.-B. Allison Gray, John Jermain Library, Sag Harbor, NY Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Once again, DiCamillo harkens back to an older storytelling style, filled with magic and the transformational power of love. Edward Tulane is a china rabbit-dapper and serious and more than a little superior. His mistress, Abilene Tulane, loved him and "thought almost as highly of Edward as Edward thought of himself." Edward is interested in little beyond his own comfort and beauty. Indeed, everyone except for Abilene's grandmother, Pellegrina, condescends to him. She commissioned his making, ordered his dapper clothing and smart pocket watch and, in the end, demanded a good deal more of Edward than he thought he wanted to give. Her warning, "You disappoint me," thrusts Edward into the adventure that becomes his life. He learns about love, loss and consequences. Somewhere between fairy tale and fable, DiCamillo spins the tale of Edward, transformed by the lives he touches. The reader will be transformed too. Sumptuous gouache illustrations complement the old-fashioned, dramatic narrative. Keep the tissues handy for this one. (Fiction. 7+)

Product Details

Candlewick Press
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
7.25(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.81(d)
700L (what's this?)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt


Once, in a house on Egypt Street, there lived a rabbit who was made almost entirely of china. He had china arms and china legs, china paws and a china head, a china torso and a china nose. His arms and legs were jointed and joined by wire so that his china elbows and china knees could be bent, giving him much freedom of movement.

His ears were made of real rabbit fur, and beneath the fur, there were strong, bendable wires, which allowed the ears to be arranged into poses that reflected the rabbit's mood - jaunty, tired, full of ennui. His tail, too, was made of real rabbit fur and was fluffy and soft and well shaped.

The rabbit's name was Edward Tulane, and he was tall. He measured almost three feet from the tip of his ears to the tip of his feet; his eyes were painted a penetrating and intelligent blue.

In all, Edward Tulane felt himself to be an exceptional specimen. Only his whiskers gave him pause. They were long and elegant (as they should be), but they were of uncertain origin. Edward felt quite strongly that they were not the whiskers of a rabbit. Whom the whiskers had belonged to initially - what unsavory animal - was a question that Edward could not bear to consider for too long. And so he did not. He preferred, as a rule, not to think unpleasant thoughts.

Edward's mistress was a ten-year-old, dark-haired girl named Abilene Tulane, who thought almost as highly of Edward as Edward thought of himself. Each morning after she dressed herself for school, Abilene dressed Edward.

The china rabbit was in possession of an extraordinary wardrobe composed of handmade silk suits. . . . Each pair of well-cut pants had a small pocket for Edward's gold pocket watch. Abilene wound this watch for him each morning.

"Now, Edward," she said to him after she was done winding the watch, "when the big hand is on the twelve and the little hand is on the three, I will come home to you."

She placed Edward on a chair in the dining room and positioned the chair so that Edward was looking out the window and could see the path that led up to the Tulane front door. Abilene balanced the watch on his left leg. She kissed the tips of his ears, and then she left and Edward spent the day staring out at Egypt Street, listening to the tick of his watch and waiting.

Of all the seasons of the year, the rabbit most preferred winter, for the sun set early then and the dining-room windows became dark and Edward could see his own reflection in the glass. And what a reflection it was! What an elegant figure he cut! Edward never ceased to be amazed at his own fineness.

In the evening, Edward sat at the dining-room table with the other members of the Tulane family: Abilene; her mother and father; and Abilene's grandmother, who was called Pellegrina. True, Edward's ears barely cleared the tabletop, and true also, he spent the duration of the meal staring straight ahead at nothing but the bright and blinding white of the tablecloth. But he was there, a rabbit at the table.

Abilene's parents found it charming that Abilene considered Edward real, and that she sometimes requested that a phrase or story be repeated because Edward had not heard it.

"Papa," Abilene would say, "I'm afraid that Edward didn't catch that last bit."

Abilene's father would then turn in the direction of Edward's ears and speak slowly, repeating what he had just said for the benefit of the china rabbit. Edward pretended, out of courtesy to Abilene, to listen. But, in truth, he was not very interested in what people had to say. And also, he did not care for Abilene's parents and their condescending manner toward him. All adults, in fact, condescended to him.

Only Abilene's grandmother spoke to him as Abilene did, as one equal to another. Pellegrina was very old. She had a large, sharp nose and bright, black eyes that shone like dark stars. It was Pellegrina who was responsible for Edward's existence. It was she who had commissioned his making, she who had ordered his silk suits and his pocket watch, his jaunty hats and his bendable ears, his fine leather shoes and his jointed arms and legs, all from a master craftsman in her native France. It was Pellegrina who had given him as a gift to Abilene on her seventh birthday.

And it was Pellegrina who came each night to tuck Abilene into her bed and Edward into his.

"Will you tell us a story, Pellegrina?" Abilene asked her grandmother each night.

"Not tonight, lady," said Pellegrina.

"When?" asked Abilene. "What night?"

"Soon," said Pellegrina. "Soon there will be a story."

And then she turned off the light, and Edward and Abilene lay in the dark of the bedroom.

"I love you, Edward," Abilene said each night after Pellegrina had left. She said those words and then she waited, almost as if she expected Edward to say something in return.

Edward said nothing. He said nothing because, of course, he could not speak. He lay in his small bed next to Abilene's large one. He stared up at the ceiling and listened to the sound of her breath entering and leaving her body, knowing that soon she would be asleep. Because Edward's eyes were painted on and he could not close them, he was always awake.

Sometimes, if Abilene put him into his bed on his side instead of on his back, he could see through the cracks in the curtains and out into the dark night. On clear nights, the stars shone, and their pinprick light comforted Edward in a way that he could not quite understand. Often, he stared at the stars all night until the dark finally gave way to dawn.


THE MIRACULOUS JOURNEY OF EDWARD TULANE by Kate DiCamillo. Text copyright © 2006 by Kate DiCamillo. Published by Candlewick Press, Inc., Cambridge, MA.

Meet the Author

Kate DiCamillo lives in Minneapolis, where she faithfully writes two pages a day, five days a week. "E. B. White said, 'All that I hope to say in books, all that I ever hope to say, is that I love the world,' " she says. "That's the way I feel too."

Brief Biography

Minneapolis, Minnesota
Date of Birth:
March 25, 1964
Place of Birth:
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
B.A. in English, University of Florida at Gainesville, 1987

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The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 740 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am a 5th grade teacher and this book was recommended to me by our librarian. I have two classes and this is my second year reading this book. (which means I have read it a total of 4 times). Each time I read it, I get more attached to the characters. The best part about this book, my students both boys and girls LOVE it. I am already looking forward to being able to share this book with my son. It's such a great book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought this for my 8yo daughter to read during a transatlantic flight. I was shocked to wake up from my nap to find her crying. She is a prolific reader for her age and I have never seen a book touch her like this one did. I had to read it for myself and, of course- I cried too! It is a heartwarming book. Be warned though, it does deal with death and can be a little much for some young readers.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As I perused the bookshelves of Barnes & Noble one Saturday afternoon, the cover of this little book caught my eye. I started reading it and didn't stop until I was done pausing only briefly to purchase the book and drive home. I loved the story and the wonderful pictures at the beginning of each chapter. I read and reread the final chapter several times and each time it evoked the same swell of emotions. This book has a timeless quality and I envision reading and rereading it many times over.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am an elementary teacher and this book was recommended by my school librarian so I bought it at the school book fair. I read it within two days on and off. There was moments where I laughed, others where I cried. My students would see me reading and were intrigued by the book so this coming school year we are going to read it as a class. I hope they feel the same way about the book as I did.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book can break your heart and make you cry tears of sadness but it can also make you smile and surprisr and make you cry tears of joy. This book is a little bit of a love story in it but it als ha adventure and mystery and always makes you question whats going to hapen next. This is a good book to read a second or third time. Maybe even a fourth time. This is why i am giving this book give stars. It is also so well put together. I really do reccomend this to people age 8 and up
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book inspired me to write my own stories. The love and passion put into this book has literally made me tear up every single time I have read this story. This is my most favorite fiction story I've ever read. I insist others to read and find out about Edward's journey!
heidik41 More than 1 year ago
Such a sweet, moving story for children to discover on their own, to make adults think, or to share with your kids (or even your bookclub!) and discuss. Brilliant character development and lovely illustrations. It was refreshing to experience a well-written children's book containing strong characters that so aptly depicted the value of true friendship, acceptance and love. It is the perfect balance of emotion and restraint; the story moves along at a good pace, spending the right amount of time at each point in the plot. There are some 'heavier' scenes and elements, but they are handled well. This was my first Kate DiCamillo book and I am anxious to read more.
Guest More than 1 year ago
You learn from your kids. And from an amazing rabbit and the people who love him! What a wonderful book. Keep writing, Ms DiCamillo! I adore your work!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a sweet heart-touching book!!I think it is a great bed time story for all ages!!!But it is a little sad but still a GREAT book to read!!! :D
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Everyone who can should defenly readthis book! Read this book I tell you READ it, now This book is for all ages It is completey apropriote And its the best book ever
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This story was heartbraking and loving and great i look for more books by this author!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book it is the best book i had read in my whole life
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is really good my school had to read it for March is reading month. I recomend it to any body!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am in 6th grade and i read it in 4tj and i still give it 5 Stars!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Awsome book lve it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved reading this to my son. We enjoyed the adventure of Edward. We laughed, cried and cheered for him. Loved the story!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo is a wonderful book. This heartwarming story is about a china rabbit that learns the precious act of love. Edward, the rabbit, goes through a complete metamorphosis through the events in this story. Once I began reading this book, I could not put it down. I have already recommended it to several friends. It is a fabulous book. One of the best I¿ve read in a while!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This story is about an incredibly vain china rabbit, Edward Tulane, who is very pleased with himself until one day he is thrown overboard a ship and is lost. Edward is taken on a miraculous journey and learns what it really feels like to love, especially to feel emotion for someone besides himself. Edward's story teaches a valuable lesson, after what seems like a loss equivalent to 'the end of the world', it is still possible to love again.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book! it's so great!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It's a great story, a little part of it was sad but in the end it was it was really happy. You should read it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was recommended by my son's 2nd grade teacher...we had never read one of Kate DiCamillo's books, but we tried this one iand we absolutely loved it! My boys did not want to put it down...it is simply written, but the language is so rich and the illustrations are just beautiful! The story is very sweet...reminds me a little of The Velveteen Rabbit, only much better! We have since read another of her books (Despereaux) and thoroughly enjoyed it as well. We'll be reading more of her books, for sure! My boys are aged 7 and 9.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When i was in third grade my teacher recommended it and i read it. I read it again the next year and still liked it. It wasnt too sad but it was a great book because of how he goes from one family to another. The author really makes you feel bad for him.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I like this book because of all the details and the adventures that Edward ( china rabbit) has. I think that the auther had a great idea for this book. I wish it was a series of books. 8)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book to my 6 yearold it is now my favorite book