The Tiger Rising
The Tiger Rising
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Text Difficulty:3 - 6
About the Author-
- Kate DiCamillo is the author of the first four stories starring Mercy Watson. She is also the author of The Tale of Despereaux, which won the Newbery Medal; Because of Winn-Dixie, which received a Newbery Honor; The Tiger Rising, a National Book Award Finalist; The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, winner of a Boston Globe-Horn Book Award; and the picture book Great Joy. She lives in Minneapolis.
- His mother six months dead, his father locked in emotional denial, his legs covered in itchy, red blisters, 12-year-old Rob Horton has stuffed his feelings into the suitcase he packed after his mother's funeral for the move to the Kentucky Star Motel in Lister, Florida. Not until he finds the caged tiger in the woods, not until he is given the keys to the cage by sleazy Mr. Beauchamp, not until he meets fellow outsider Sistine Bailey does Rob consider opening that suitcase and resuming an emotional life. Dylan Baker effectively captures the Southern bray of the bullying Threemonger brothers; the false sincerity and concern of the principal, Mr. Felmer, who frees Rob from the necessity of school; the gentle, gravelly bossiness of Rob's only friend, Willie Mae, the chambermaid; and the controlled pain of Rob himself. Baker takes the listener on Rob's journey--unlocking the tiger's cage, opening the suitcase, reclaiming his life. T.B. (c) AudioFile 2001, Portland, Maine
Starred review from July 9, 2001
DiCamillo's evocative, emotionally rich story about a boy caught in the powerful grip of grief is given even more dramatic depth via Baker's (Thirteen Days; The Tailor of Panama) sensitive and colorful performance. Rob has become a "pro at not-crying" in the six months since his mother died. Rob's father hasn't allowed such displays and has moved himself and Rob to a new town and a new start. But Lister, Fla., hasn't been so great. Rob is plagued by a mysterious rash on his legs and endures the endless taunts of bullies; his father struggles as the maintenance man at a local motel owned by a demanding blowhard. Everything changes, however, when Rob stumbles upon a real-life caged tiger in the woods behind the motel and shares his discovery with Sistine, a spitfire of a girl who has just moved to town. The tiger soon stands in for the wild pain and anger that have overwhelmed Rob and Sistine, and they become determined to find a way to free the animal (and their feelings). Baker's pacing is perfect and his turn as sassy, no-nonsense motel housekeeper Willie May crackles. His other characterizations shine as well, especially the often haughty-sounding Sistine and the brief, humorous bits as unctuous Southerners at Rob's school. Ages 8-up.
PublisherPenguin Random House Audio Publishing Group
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