PMC Book Club Review: The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane


On the way to daycare the other day, my four-year-old son and I were discussing the summer break and the excitement of starting preschool in the fall.  

Amidst the fun plans of vacations, new backpacks, and “special school clothes,” he asked me a question that nearly broke me:

“Mommy, what if the kids are not nice?”

He is four. And that is already something he is worried about. 

And honestly, so am I.  

As parents, we try to be vigilant on the playgrounds and at birthday parties. Is everyone getting along? Are they sharing? Is anyone left out?

As they get older, we worry even more. Do they sit with anyone at lunch? Are they “fitting in” okay? Do they have good friends?

It is overwhelming at times, but then I always fall back on making sure we are doing what we need to do as parents to make sure our boys are the kind, inclusive, and empathetic ones and praying it falls into place.

In my constant worry, we decided that a good way to hopefully ensure that is to teach it to our boys from an early age. And a good way to teach lessons is through books and bedtime stories.

Katie Di Camillo’s The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane is a beautifully written children’s tale to do just that. 

Originally published in 2015, DiCamillo’s protagonist, a porcelain rabbit (never call him a “bunny”), begins as a self-centered “toy” of young Abilene. She loves him wholeheartedly, but Edward Tulane is utterly apathetic towards everyone- including sweet Abilene.

At one point, Pellagrina, Abilene’s wise grandmother, tells a story and says, How can a story end happily if there is no love?”  

This becomes the driving theme of the short children’s book, and it is only through an epic odyssey that Edward develops a broader perspective of the world and himself. 

He finds faith, love, and empathy.

Ultimately, he finds himself.

Written for young children, this is the type of book that will communicate different messages during each stage of life. Our book club members found themes of religious redemption, time, and loss. 

The chapters are short and almost standalone tales, making family reading time easy to help facilitate great dialogue each night as you finish the 240 pages.

The PMC Book Club May pick is Mad Honey by Jodi Picoult. Join us on Thursday, June 29th (5-6pm) at Bodacious Bookstore to discuss her latest read.


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