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The Beatryce Prophecy

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From two-time Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo and two-time Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall comes a fantastical meditation on fate, love, and the power of words to spell the world. We shall all, in the end, be led to where we belong. We shall all, in the end, find our way home. In a time of war, a mysterious child appears at the monastery of the Order of the Chronicles of From two-time Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo and two-time Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall comes a fantastical meditation on fate, love, and the power of words to spell the world. We shall all, in the end, be led to where we belong. We shall all, in the end, find our way home. In a time of war, a mysterious child appears at the monastery of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing. Gentle Brother Edik finds the girl, Beatryce, curled in a stall, wracked with fever, coated in dirt and blood, and holding fast to the ear of Answelica the goat. As the monk nurses Beatryce to health, he uncovers her dangerous secret, one that imperils them all--for the king of the land seeks just such a girl, and Brother Edik, who penned the prophecy himself, knows why. And so it is that a girl with a head full of stories--powerful tales-within-the-tale of queens and kings, mermaids and wolves--ventures into a dark wood in search of the castle of one who wishes her dead. But Beatryce knows that, should she lose her way, those who love her--a wild-eyed monk, a man who had once been king, a boy with a terrible sword, and a goat with a head as hard as stone--will never give up searching for her, and to know this is to know everything. With its timeless themes, unforgettable cast, and magical medieval setting, Kate DiCamillo's lyrical tale, paired with resonant black-and-white illustrations by Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall, is a true collaboration between masters.


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From two-time Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo and two-time Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall comes a fantastical meditation on fate, love, and the power of words to spell the world. We shall all, in the end, be led to where we belong. We shall all, in the end, find our way home. In a time of war, a mysterious child appears at the monastery of the Order of the Chronicles of From two-time Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo and two-time Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall comes a fantastical meditation on fate, love, and the power of words to spell the world. We shall all, in the end, be led to where we belong. We shall all, in the end, find our way home. In a time of war, a mysterious child appears at the monastery of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing. Gentle Brother Edik finds the girl, Beatryce, curled in a stall, wracked with fever, coated in dirt and blood, and holding fast to the ear of Answelica the goat. As the monk nurses Beatryce to health, he uncovers her dangerous secret, one that imperils them all--for the king of the land seeks just such a girl, and Brother Edik, who penned the prophecy himself, knows why. And so it is that a girl with a head full of stories--powerful tales-within-the-tale of queens and kings, mermaids and wolves--ventures into a dark wood in search of the castle of one who wishes her dead. But Beatryce knows that, should she lose her way, those who love her--a wild-eyed monk, a man who had once been king, a boy with a terrible sword, and a goat with a head as hard as stone--will never give up searching for her, and to know this is to know everything. With its timeless themes, unforgettable cast, and magical medieval setting, Kate DiCamillo's lyrical tale, paired with resonant black-and-white illustrations by Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall, is a true collaboration between masters.

30 review for The Beatryce Prophecy

  1. 5 out of 5

    Betsy

    As our world sinks more and more comfortably into a general morass of technology, it should be little wonder that recent children’s books have grown increasingly comfortable shrugging off our modern day beeps and boops in favor of (of all things) the Middle Ages. The author that digs deep into the muck of the past sometimes finds literary medals buried there. Think of recent Newbery Honors The Inquisitor's Tale by Adam Gidwitz and The Book of Boy by Catherine Gilbert Murdock. Think too of graphi As our world sinks more and more comfortably into a general morass of technology, it should be little wonder that recent children’s books have grown increasingly comfortable shrugging off our modern day beeps and boops in favor of (of all things) the Middle Ages. The author that digs deep into the muck of the past sometimes finds literary medals buried there. Think of recent Newbery Honors The Inquisitor's Tale by Adam Gidwitz and The Book of Boy by Catherine Gilbert Murdock. Think too of graphic novels like Queen of the Sea by Dylan Meconis. Mind you, each of these books grapple with religion in some fashion, going so far as to throw in the occasional angel for spice. In a time when there seems to be a thick wedge between books for kids that are entirely secular and those that are chock full o’ religious fervor, these types of stories that walk a line between the two are rarities. Kate DiCamillo isn’t afraid of lobbing the occasional angel at you, whether it has blue wings or smells like a sewer, but in her latest book The Beatryce Prophecy there’s something else on her mind. Pairing with the utterly lovely Sophie Blackall, the two present us with a story that has all the trappings of a fable, and all the reality of a thoroughly thrilling tale. There was once a girl and she was covered in blood. She was found by Brother Edik, curled up asleep, wracked with fever, beside the monastery’s resident demon goat, Answelica. Though that creature had never had time for any person before, it was clearly devoted to the child. Alas, the girl, Beatryce, lost her memory. Worse still, she appeared to be capable of reading and writing. Determined to protect her, Brother Edik disguised her as a boy and shaved her head, while not far away, forces conspired against her: A king who works to stay on the throne. A murderer dying in his bed. A thief in the woods. An advisor who knows her name. At the same time, Beatryce discovered a cadre of strange and wonderful friends, in the midst of terrible times. A bee. A boy. An ex-king. And truly, no one can stand in the way of a goat, when it has a girl to protect. It sounds so dull to declare that children must, if only on occasion, be given books with beautiful words and turns of phrase in them, so that they may have something with which to feed their multiplying little gray cells. And certainly this book has a penchant for a nicely turned phrase. When a true baddie is on the page you get words like “twisted” and “oily”. To hold a seahorse is, “light, so light that it felt as if she were holding someone else’s dream cupped in her hand.” On a beautiful day, “The grass was high and the sky was very blue, blue enough to break your heart in two.” Secrets, “are trouble and that trouble has a very long tail.” The goat’s head is, “as solid and warm as a stone on a summer afternoon.” Good lines are the expectation, not the exception, in a DiCamillo book. I suppose I’m just relaying DiCamillo’s own lines here for you because I’m hoping that even out of context you can understand their worth. But DiCamillo’s own love of letters is only half the story here. The whole reason she’s universally lauded (seriously, have you ever met anyone who can resist her talent for long?) is that she isn’t afraid to grapple with darkness. Human darkness. Unforeseen and/or uncontrollable circumstances. It is well to remember that the best children’s authors, the true greats, have all found their own unique ways of dancing with the dark. Some brush against it, some flirt with it, and some engage with it headlong to varying degrees of effect. DiCamillo? She’s more of the dancing type, I think. It’s always on the edges of your vision but her story keeps it at bay. It never succeeds in overwhelming the larger tale. And certainly there is much that could make you sad here. Slaughtered family members, children lost and alone, and callous leaders of very little brains and too much power. This book doesn’t work without an acknowledgment of the existence of misery. If it has anything in common with DiCamillo's earlier fables, I think this is where the books of her past and the books of her present meet. She has always danced with her darkness. The Beatryce Prophecy is just playing a keener tune. I do believe that it is a very good thing for a girl child of words to have a homicidal animal companion of some sort by her side. One of the dangers of The Beatryce Prophecy is that its scenes could easily be stolen, if one were less careful, by the goat, Answelica. Answelica, I should say, is a soul mate to a very similar guardian creature, Saracen the goose, found to be Mosca Mye’s companion in Fly By Night by Frances Hardinge. In fact, should you find yourself with a child that enjoys this book particularly, it might behoove you to consider jumping ahead in time a century or two to Hardinge’s title as well. Both books love to play with words. And both books know how thoroughly satisfying it is to watch an animal of demonic rage protect a girl through thick and thin. Answelica, I should note, is in many ways a direct opposite to DiCamillo’s usual animal companions. One has a difficult time squaring the gentleness of Mercy Watson or Winn-Dixie with this goat’s capacity for malicious forethought. My mother once pointed out to me that the same puppeteer that does Big Bird on Sesame Street also does Oscar the Grouch. “It must be so cathartic to do both,” she mused. I think Answelica serves very much the same role for DiCamillo. After years of perfectly gentle animals (punctuated by the occasional gentle superhero squirrel) it is time for some venom. Some bite (literally). Some Answelica. A creature of “fierce, uncompromising love.” There are author/artist pairings in this world so natural that when they occur for the first time you simply assume that your own memory is faulty and that they have always been together. DiCamillo and Blackall. The jacket copy of this book has had a lot of fun with their duality. It says, “From two-time Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo and two-time Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall…” Since they had not done any books together, it would only make sense to assume that the first book they would do would not only have to be of significant importance but would fit with Blackall’s style. I say that, but aside from DiCamillo’s Raymie Nightingale series, it’s not hard to imagine Blackall doing most of Kate’s books. Each would benefit from the connection (and, were I an editor, I would seriously consider a new line of DiCamillo’s old books, re-released with Ms. Blackall’s art). So why has Ms. Blackall decided to work on The Beatryce Prophecy? Well, several ideas come to mind. I don’t know the whole of Sophie’s career but I don’t remember her doing much with the Middle Ages in Europe before. We all know that she loves her research too. As such, surely the lure of illuminating her own manuscript was too strong to resist. And it works. Her images serve as an almost eerily perfect complement to DiCamillo’s text. In an interview with the Growing Readers Podcast about her work on this book, I sadly didn’t find any information from Ms. Blackall on her research, but she did say something about the role of the illustrator in a novel that I think is of particular interest. Says Ms. Blackall, “I always think about the person reading it [the book] and try to channel what they want to see on the page.” But I will tell you the reason that I, personally, am glad that Sophie did this book. Again, it all comes back to Answelica (I told you that goat would steal the show if you let her – she’s practically stealing this review!). Goats in children’s literature are rarely portrayed accurately. It all comes down to their eyes. Humans have a devil of a time coming to terms with horizontal pupils. So if you see a book for kids, I swear that 90% of the time, whether it’s about a goat or an octopus or a frog, the pupils are rounded out. Not so here. In this book Answelica benefits the most when Blackall not only gives her those eyeballs, but also has added some hanging teeth. The effect is deliciously unnerving. Not since Arnold Lobel’s Frog and Toad books have horizontal pupils truly gotten their day in the sun. When you think about it, DiCamillo sort of began her career with books that read more like fables than fantasies. In time, she would transition into a remarkable kind of realism that honed her gifts and talents. To be honest, I was never the biggest fan of her fable period, but when her feet are firmly planted on the ground there is no one to match her. You can detect echoes of her past books swimming in the margins of The Beatryce Prophecy too. Here you can glimpse the dungeons of Despereaux. Over there is a farmyard, worthy of the unflappable Mercy Watson. And at the center is a friendship so unyielding and true, it smacks squarely of Bink and Golly. And there is darkness and light and good storytelling and bad men. At its heart is a girl with more smarts than the era knows what to do with and a small, very small, army of devoted friends willing to march into the jaws of danger on her behalf. There is good art. There is a bad goat. And finally there are little maple candies in different shapes that are so sweet that it’s taking all my restraint to keep from comparing them in some fashion to this title. It is, in short, a very good book, worth any kid’s time to read. And that, my dears, is the kind of book that you should probably read too.

  2. 5 out of 5

    DaNae

    How does she continue to break and mend my heart so many, many times?

  3. 5 out of 5

    Nelly Buchet

    The Arthurian Legends meet CHARLOTTE'S WEB. I laughed and I cried. Answelica the goat is one of my favorite, most hilarious and wonderful characters of all time. The Arthurian Legends meet CHARLOTTE'S WEB. I laughed and I cried. Answelica the goat is one of my favorite, most hilarious and wonderful characters of all time.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Katie Ziegler (Life Between Words)

    “What world is this I now inhabit, and how shall I live in it?” Kate. Queen Kate. She knows how to tell a story that feels timeless and true and full of magic (even if there’s no, or very little, *magic* in the book) and heart and hope. She’s Queen for a reason. Also, best last lines: ‘What does, then, change the world? If the hardheaded goat Answelica could speak, she would answer with one word: “Love.” And if you were to ask Beatryce of Abelard? She too would answer “Love.” Love, and stories.’

  5. 5 out of 5

    R. G. Nairam

    My only qualm with this book is the idea of Beatryce being of noble blood and one of her adversaries not being. I know classism isn't as hot of a topic as racism, but I think it adds an unnecessary dimension that doesn't really fit in the overall gentle love this story offers. My only qualm with this book is the idea of Beatryce being of noble blood and one of her adversaries not being. I know classism isn't as hot of a topic as racism, but I think it adds an unnecessary dimension that doesn't really fit in the overall gentle love this story offers.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Mid-Continent Public Library

    The Kate DiCamillo who gifted us with The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, The Tale of Despereaux, The Magician's Elephant, and other fantastical tales is back with a new fable. I have also loved her realistic fiction titles, but it is a welcome change to discover this breathtaking new release. The illustrations are beautifully done by Caldecott-winner Sophie Blackall. This is a masterpiece! I loved reading about Beatryce, the girl of prophecy and her dear companion Answelica, the monastery The Kate DiCamillo who gifted us with The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, The Tale of Despereaux, The Magician's Elephant, and other fantastical tales is back with a new fable. I have also loved her realistic fiction titles, but it is a welcome change to discover this breathtaking new release. The illustrations are beautifully done by Caldecott-winner Sophie Blackall. This is a masterpiece! I loved reading about Beatryce, the girl of prophecy and her dear companion Answelica, the monastery goat. Of Edik the monk, Jack Dory, the boy with a sword, and so many more. This is a tale of friendship, of revenge, of justice -- a quest. This is heartwarming and inspiring. One of my favorite juvenile reads of 2021. My words can't possibly do it justice. You have to experience it for yourself. * Reviewed by Darla from Red Bridge *

  7. 4 out of 5

    Melrose's

    My kind of weird. A monk, a former king, an evil goat, an orphan boy and a bald girl who can read and write.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Christine Norvell

    DiCamillo has crafted a simple story with great emotion, a poignant simplicity that hints at the profound. In such a setting, I asked myself if DiCamillo might also be alluding to another well-known medieval figure, Dante’s Beatrice. As a character of goodness and light, DiCamillo’s Beatryce draws others to her, especially those on the fringes of society. But in an interview with BookPage, DiCamillo tells us she had another heroine in mind, Joan of Arc. Like Joan, Beatryce is determined and brave DiCamillo has crafted a simple story with great emotion, a poignant simplicity that hints at the profound. In such a setting, I asked myself if DiCamillo might also be alluding to another well-known medieval figure, Dante’s Beatrice. As a character of goodness and light, DiCamillo’s Beatryce draws others to her, especially those on the fringes of society. But in an interview with BookPage, DiCamillo tells us she had another heroine in mind, Joan of Arc. Like Joan, Beatryce is determined and brave. Like Joan, she carries hope in her heart and faith that she will find her way home, even as the king and his henchmen close in to prevent the prophecy from coming true. Because of these allusions to Joan of Arc, some reviewers insist the story is one of female empowerment, but I find that limiting. Beatryce is not actively fighting a cultural barrier nor is she leading an army. Rather, her character and those who surround her remind me most of the Beatitudes. They are the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek and merciful, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness because each one senses that Beatryce’s life holds a greater purpose, a purpose to heal a kingdom. Full review soon at StoryWarren.com

  9. 4 out of 5

    Stacey

    Gorgeously illustrated book with a beautiful message of friendship.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Katie Fitzgerald

    When Brother Edik finds Beatryce in a goat stall at the monastery of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing, she is very ill and curled up with a disagreeable goat named Answelica. After she is healthy again, Brother Edik comes to realize that Beatryce is the subject of a prophecy he once transcribed, and she is now being sought by the king for a mysterious and dangerous reason. With Answelica as her unlikely traveling companion, Beatryce sets off into the woods and into the unknown, willing t When Brother Edik finds Beatryce in a goat stall at the monastery of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing, she is very ill and curled up with a disagreeable goat named Answelica. After she is healthy again, Brother Edik comes to realize that Beatryce is the subject of a prophecy he once transcribed, and she is now being sought by the king for a mysterious and dangerous reason. With Answelica as her unlikely traveling companion, Beatryce sets off into the woods and into the unknown, willing to meet the king - and her fate - face to face. When I first heard of this book, I saw it being compared to The Inquisitor's Tale, and I got really nervous. I didn't want it to be an anti-Catholic story, and I didn't want to be upset with Kate DiCamillo, whose books I generally like. Thankfully, this book is almost nothing like The Inquisitor's Tale in any way. The setting is somewhat medieval-inspired, though there isn't an explicit mention of a year, and there are some hints in the text that suggest the time period is left intentionally unclear. The monks in the story do seem to have a hierarchy that suggests they might be Catholic, but religion is not the focus of the book, and there is very little religious content in the story. I did think it was a bit of a stretch that a monk in dire circumstances such as some of the ones Brother Edik finds himself in would never think to pray, but other than that, the lack of religion worked better here than moral relativism worked in The Inquisitor's Tale. The story itself is everything readers expect from a Kate DiCamillo novel. There is a character on a quest, who is surrounded by a variety of helpful and quirky friends. The story has its own particulars, but it also has a universal message that can apply in many contexts. The story is also gentle, even in its scarier and more intense moments. It's an uplifting book that pays tribute to the power of friendship, and of reading, and of bravery. The illustrations are also top-notch; Sophie Blackall is one of my favorite artists, and the style she uses for this book is quite different, but very well-suited to the story. We're still in the Mercy Watson/Bink & Gollie phase in my family, so it might be a while yet before we start on any DiCamillo novels. When we do, though, we have absolutely nothing to fear from The Beatryce Prophecy, which remains true to the standards set by DiCamillo's other beloved novels and makes no mention of any of the problematic themes that made The Inquisitor's Tale such a terrible disappointment. This review also appears on my blog, Read-at-Home Mom.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    (Edelweiss Digital Galley) In The Beatryce Prophecy, DiCamillo returns to a somewhat stark medieval setting to tell a beautiful story. The Beatryce Prophecy, with the gorgeous language so characteristic of DiCamillo, illuminates the importance of being yourself, surrounding yourself with love and loving people, and the beautiful power of words and stories. Beautifully written and distinct characters will bring both tears and laughter. Another great DiCamillo treasure. Will re-read again as it fe (Edelweiss Digital Galley) In The Beatryce Prophecy, DiCamillo returns to a somewhat stark medieval setting to tell a beautiful story. The Beatryce Prophecy, with the gorgeous language so characteristic of DiCamillo, illuminates the importance of being yourself, surrounding yourself with love and loving people, and the beautiful power of words and stories. Beautifully written and distinct characters will bring both tears and laughter. Another great DiCamillo treasure. Will re-read again as it feels like there is so much more to unpack.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Theresa Grissom

    Thanks to Edelweiss plus for an eARC of this book. Like all other Kate DiCamillo books, this is a winner. Beautiful, quirky, and imaginative. One of my favorites of the year so far. I may struggle finding the right student to give this to but for me personally, I absolutely loved this!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus I can see this being a great choice for readers who enjoyed Gidwitz's The Inquisitor's Tale, Murdock's The Book of Boy, or Gray's Adam of the Road. E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus I can see this being a great choice for readers who enjoyed Gidwitz's The Inquisitor's Tale, Murdock's The Book of Boy, or Gray's Adam of the Road.

  14. 5 out of 5

    LeeAnna Weaver

    Aren’t young readers lucky to have Kate DiCamillo’s books? I feel lucky, too. I think about her stories long after I turn the final page. This beautifully written book is a gentle reminder of the importance of love and forgiveness, and the power of stories to enrich our lives. I hope this one is a serious contender for the Newbery Medal.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Christina

    A book about a strong girl, friendship and love. So sweet!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Alyson

    I am grateful to have an advanced copy of this book to read. I am new to the author and her unique writing. Each page was an unexpected surprise and I like how the author tied it all together in the end. I want to know how I can get such a loyal goat?

  17. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie Grover

    A magical medieval setting and a powerful cast of characters makes this a timeless classic. Brother Edik is a monk who has found the girl, Beatryce curled in a stall and wracked with fever, holding onto the ear of Answelica the goat. As he nurses the young girl back to health he uncovers a dangerous secret, one that imperils them all- for it is the king who seeks just a girl, and Brother Edik knows why. Because it was he who penned the prophecy. Reader, you are going to meet a wild-eyed monk, a A magical medieval setting and a powerful cast of characters makes this a timeless classic. Brother Edik is a monk who has found the girl, Beatryce curled in a stall and wracked with fever, holding onto the ear of Answelica the goat. As he nurses the young girl back to health he uncovers a dangerous secret, one that imperils them all- for it is the king who seeks just a girl, and Brother Edik knows why. Because it was he who penned the prophecy. Reader, you are going to meet a wild-eyed monk, a man who had once been king, a boy with a terrible sword, an a goat with a head as hard as stone. Kate Di Camillo never disappoints. She writes beautiful stories that are meant to be shared again and again.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Phil Jensen

    I read this book two weeks ago, and I'm struggling to come up with anything to say about it. There's nothing wrong with it, but there's nothing all that distinguished, either. I think it's a bit edgier than a lot of DiCamillo's earlier books. People are murdered and the characters are traumatized. The central conflict has a lot to do with a kingdom in which girls are not allowed to read. When the contemporary conversation is centered around the concept of gender itself, a story about old-fashioned I read this book two weeks ago, and I'm struggling to come up with anything to say about it. There's nothing wrong with it, but there's nothing all that distinguished, either. I think it's a bit edgier than a lot of DiCamillo's earlier books. People are murdered and the characters are traumatized. The central conflict has a lot to do with a kingdom in which girls are not allowed to read. When the contemporary conversation is centered around the concept of gender itself, a story about old-fashioned gender roles feels oddly quaint. I appreciate the goat Answelica. I think DiCamillo's last three books did not go heavy enough on animal characters. I guess my main thought is that it wasn't weird enough to stand out to me. I haven't read anything in 2021 that really jumps out at me for Newbery contention. My current favorite is probably still Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie P (Because My Mother Read)

    Thanks to the publisher for the free advance copy to read. Beloved author Kate DiCamillo has a new book out and this time it is accompanied with illustrations by the amazing Sophie Blackall (known for Hello Lighthouse, If You Come to Earth, and many more!) The Beatyrce Prophecy is a middle grade novel set in medieval times and follows a child who mysteriously arrives at a monastery sick and injured. The story feels like reading a timeless legend and carries the elements and feel DiCamillo is known Thanks to the publisher for the free advance copy to read. Beloved author Kate DiCamillo has a new book out and this time it is accompanied with illustrations by the amazing Sophie Blackall (known for Hello Lighthouse, If You Come to Earth, and many more!) The Beatyrce Prophecy is a middle grade novel set in medieval times and follows a child who mysteriously arrives at a monastery sick and injured. The story feels like reading a timeless legend and carries the elements and feel DiCamillo is known for—a unique cast of characters banding together (including a strong willed goat!), a discovery of beautiful truths, and a reminder of the power of stories. I think fans of her work will find much to love about this one as well!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Melinda

    Classic fairytale that also fights the patriarchy, swoony language, beautiful artwork, righteously vengeful goat.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Karen Perry

    Not up to the usual Dicamillo standards but a kindly story that highlights parts of medieval culture. Just OK.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jessie_Book

    Not as good as Dicamillo's other works but still better than 99% of what is being published today. Not as good as Dicamillo's other works but still better than 99% of what is being published today.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Book2Dragon

    I have a new title for my favorite books of 2021. This is a wonderful story, and I loved every word of it. Kate DiCamillo wrote Because of Winn-Dixie, another of my faves. She is a wonderful writer and this is a Wonder-full book. The characters are so real, even the goat. If you like castles, if you like words, if you like quests and mystery, if you love good writing, if you can imagine a better world, well, this is a wonderful book to read. (I've added some quotes from the book on Goodreads quot I have a new title for my favorite books of 2021. This is a wonderful story, and I loved every word of it. Kate DiCamillo wrote Because of Winn-Dixie, another of my faves. She is a wonderful writer and this is a Wonder-full book. The characters are so real, even the goat. If you like castles, if you like words, if you like quests and mystery, if you love good writing, if you can imagine a better world, well, this is a wonderful book to read. (I've added some quotes from the book on Goodreads quotes). I had just read a review in a books magazine, and went to the library by chance a few days later, turned around, and there was this wonderful book just waiting for me. Life is just a series of miracles.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Conner

    Kate DiCamillo is one of the literary world's most precious gifts. She understands that children's literature does not need to dumb down its ideas or condescend to its audience, making timeless works that can be appreciated by readers of all ages. The fable she's crafted here is warm, funny, generous, and—of course—breaks your heart then gives you hope. The writing is crystal clear and the characters immediately come to life, although some of the themes feel underdeveloped. Answelica the goat is t Kate DiCamillo is one of the literary world's most precious gifts. She understands that children's literature does not need to dumb down its ideas or condescend to its audience, making timeless works that can be appreciated by readers of all ages. The fable she's crafted here is warm, funny, generous, and—of course—breaks your heart then gives you hope. The writing is crystal clear and the characters immediately come to life, although some of the themes feel underdeveloped. Answelica the goat is the GOAT. "We shall all, in the end, be led to where we belong. We shall all, in the end, find our way home."

  25. 5 out of 5

    Liz Todd

    The Great Kate DiCamillo… loneliness, loss, animals, friendship, love…and the power of words and stories. The repeated refrain in this book feels like the ultimate summative Kate D sentiment: “We shall all, in the end, be led to where we belong. We shall all, in the end, find our way home.”

  26. 4 out of 5

    Julie Eshbaugh

    Amazing, as per usual from Kate DiCamillo. All the stars.

  27. 4 out of 5

    ~ Cheryl ~

    "Nothing is more terrifying to evil than joy." This is the story of Beatryce, who turns up in the stables of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing, the monk who finds her there, and one ferocious and feisty goat. It's set in a world where the common people are not permitted to learn to read or write, but Brother Edik, who finds this mysterious girl, learns that she can do both. Beatryce can't remember her past, but Brother Edik senses she is in danger. This book has much of what we have com "Nothing is more terrifying to evil than joy." This is the story of Beatryce, who turns up in the stables of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing, the monk who finds her there, and one ferocious and feisty goat. It's set in a world where the common people are not permitted to learn to read or write, but Brother Edik, who finds this mysterious girl, learns that she can do both. Beatryce can't remember her past, but Brother Edik senses she is in danger. This book has much of what we have come to love DiCamillo books for: underdogs overcoming adversity, good triumphing over evil, bravery, and unlikely friendships that become strong and valuable. But it's mainly about the importance of words and stories. It's like a tender love letter about the power of storytelling, and it's done very well. If you enjoyed The Tale of Despereaux, you will enjoy this one too. It has a lot of the same fairy tale feel, with a king and a castle and looming danger. It's not flawless like Despereaux is, but it is charming and wise and I enjoyed it very much.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    This was a lovely read. Brother Edik is my favorite character. He has a wandering eye and his father constantly shamed him for it. However, the narrator and Beatryce both find it an essential part of Brother Edik's goodness. At one point, the narrator says: "Brother Edik's eye danced". That one simple word 'danced' makes all the difference. It turns something shameful and abnormal into something joyful, playful, good. In a book full of the importance of words and stories, this was a lovely examp This was a lovely read. Brother Edik is my favorite character. He has a wandering eye and his father constantly shamed him for it. However, the narrator and Beatryce both find it an essential part of Brother Edik's goodness. At one point, the narrator says: "Brother Edik's eye danced". That one simple word 'danced' makes all the difference. It turns something shameful and abnormal into something joyful, playful, good. In a book full of the importance of words and stories, this was a lovely example of that. It reminds me of the book I'm reading now, The Wisdom of the Body, about the goodness of all bodies. The body = personhood.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jessie

    Kate DiCamillo is truly the G.O.A.T. (no pun intended)

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jae

    A wonderful story with, as always by Kate DiCamillo, some great characters, including a very feisty goat! The beautiful illustrations by Sophie Blackall suit the book perfectly.

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