THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX

Kate DiCamillo, Author, Graeme Malcolm, Read by
Kate DiCamillo, Author, Graeme Malcolm, Read by , read by Graeme Malcolm. Listening Library $25 (0p) ISBN 978-0-8072-1947-8
Reviewed on: 11/10/2003
Release date: 08/01/2003

The rich timbre of Malcolm's voice proves an appealing invitation for listeners to follow along with this romantic and funny tale of an unlikely hero. Despereaux Tilling, a tiny mouse with very large ears, has always been a misfit among mice. But it is his quirks—which include the ability to read books and tell stories, as well as his undying love for a human princess—that lead Despereaux on a quest that culminates in a most fitting "happily ever after" ending. Malcolm's humorous interpretation of Antoinette Tilling's (Despereaux's French mother) histrionics is fine entertainment. And his Roscuro the rat character delivers slick lines with a Latin flair. With asides directed at listeners and elements of royal intrigue, innocent romance and revenge, this listening experience sometimes recalls the film The Princess Bride . But movie fans or no, listeners will find lots to enjoy here. Ages 7-12. (Sept.)

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