The B&N Podcast: Kate DiCamillo on the Light Inside

Every author has a story beyond the one that they put down on paper. The Barnes & Noble Podcast goes between the lines with today’s most interesting writers, exploring what inspires them, what confounds them, and what they were thinking when they wrote the books we’re talking about.

Today’s episode features a conversation with award-winning writer Kate DiCamillo, whose books for young readers include the contemporary classics Because of Winn Dixie, The Tale of Despereaux, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane and Flora and Ulysses. DiCamillo is one of a handful of writers to win American Library Association’s prestigious Newbery Medal twice, and in 2104 was named National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature. DiCamillo writes books for  readers across many age ranges, and she’s the rare writer who can both sweep a family away into a world of fantasy, like that inhabited by the mouse Despeareaux, or precisely render an American small town like the Naomi, Florida of Because of Winn-Dixie.  What draws all of her work together is an alchemical blend of wonder and compassion that brings every one of her stories to glowing life.  Her new novel Beverly, Right Here is the story of a young girl who sets out in search of a new life, and it’s part of a triptych of moving, funny and absolutely memorable stories set in the small-town south that began with Raymie Nightingale and continued with Louisiana’s Way Home. Kate DiCamillo joined B&N’s Bill Tipper in the studio for a talk about the experiences that became the wellsprings of her fictional worlds.

Revisiting once again the world of Raymie Nightingale, two-time Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo turns her focus to the tough-talking, inescapably tenderhearted Beverly.

Beverly put her foot down on the gas. They went faster still.
This was what Beverly wanted — what she always wanted. To get away. To get away as fast as she could. To stay away.

Beverly Tapinski has run away from home plenty of times, but that was when she was just a kid. By now, she figures, it’s not running away. It’s leaving. Determined to make it on her own, Beverly finds a job and a place to live and tries to forget about her dog, Buddy, now buried underneath the orange trees back home; her friend Raymie, whom she left without a word; and her mom, Rhonda, who has never cared about anyone but herself. Beverly doesn’t want to depend on anyone, and she definitely doesn’t want anyone to depend on her. But despite her best efforts, she can’t help forming connections with the people around her — and gradually, she learns to see herself through their eyes. In a touching, funny, and fearless conclusion to her sequence of novels about the beloved Three Rancheros, #1 New York Times best-selling author Kate DiCamillo tells the story of a character who will break your heart and put it back together again.

Explore more books by Kate DiCamillo.

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