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Kate DiCamillo
Kate DiCamillo Facebook Kate DiCamillo website
Kate DiCamillo was born in Philadelphia, raised in Florida, and currently lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She graduated from University of Florida, where she delivered the commencement address in 2006. Her first novel, Because of Winn-Dixie, won Newbery Honor. Her second book, The Tiger Rising was a National Book award finalist. Then, in 2004, her third novel, The Tale of Desperaux, won the Newbery Medal. The second in a series of six early chapter books, Mercy Watson Goes for a Ride received a Theodor Geisel honor.

Kate is hard at work on a middle grade novel which is untitled, unformed and nowhere near done, but which she remains ridiculously optimistic about nonetheless.

Flora & Ulysses
illustrated by K.G. Campbell
Candlewick Press, 2013
ages 8 and up, ISBN

It begins, as the best superhero stories do, with a tragic accident that has unexpected consequences. The squirrel never saw the vacuum cleaner coming, but self-described cynic Flora Belle Buckman, who has read every issue of the comic book Terrible Things Can Happen to You!, is the just the right person to step in and save him. What neither can predict is that Ulysses (the squirrel) has been born anew, with powers of strength, flight, and misspelled poetry — and that Flora will be changed too, as she discovers the possibility of hope and the promise of a capacious heart. From #1 New York Times best-selling author Kate DiCamillo comes a laugh-out-loud story filled with eccentric, endearing characters and featuring an exciting new format—a novel interspersed with comic-style graphic sequences and full-page illustrations, all rendered in black-and-white by up-and-coming artist K. G. Campbell.

 

  Flora & Ulysses
Bink and Gollie: Best Friends Forever
co-authored with Alison McGhee
illustrated by Tony Fucile
Candlewick Press, 2013
ages 4 and up, ISBN

Gollie is quite sure she has royal blood in her veins, but can Bink survive her friend’s queenly airs—especially if pancakes are not part of the deal? Bink wonders what it would be like to be as tall as her friend, but how far will she stretch her luck to find out? And when Bink and Gollie long to get their picture into a book of record holders, where will they find the kudos they seek? Slapstick and sweetness, drollery and delight abound in this follow-up

  Bink and Gollie: Best Friends Forever
Bink & Gollie: Two for One
co-written with Kate DiCamillo
illustrated by Tony Fucile
Candlewick Press, 2012
ages 6 to 9, ISBN 978-0763633615

The state fair is in town, and now Bink and Gollie—utter opposites and best friends extraordinaire—must use teamwork and their gray matter while navigating its many wonders. Will the energetic Bink win the world's largest donut in the Whack-a-Duck game? Will the artistic Gollie wow the crowd in the talent show? As the undaunted duo steps into the mysterious tent of fortune-teller Madame Prunely, one prediction is crystal clear: this unlikely pair will always be the closest of pals.

  Two for One
Bink & Gollie
co-written with Alison McGhee
illustrated by Tony Fucile
Candlewick Press, 2010
ages 6 to 9, ISBN 978-0763632663

Meet Bink and Gollie, two precocious little girls—one tiny, one tall, and both utterly irrepressible. Setting out from their super-deluxe tree house and powered by plenty of peanut butter (for Bink) and pancakes (for Gollie), they share three comical adventures involving painfully bright socks, an impromptu trek to the Andes, and a most unlikely marvelous companion. No matter where their roller skates take them, at the end of the day they will always be the very best of friends.

Awards & Recognition
2011 Theodor Seuss Geisel Award

  Bink & Gollie
The Magician's Elephant
illustrated by Yoko Tanaka
Candlewick Press, 2009
ages 8 and up, ISBN 978-0-763-64410-9

When a fortuneteller's tent appears in the market square of the city of Baltese, orphan Peter Augustus Duchene knows the questions that he needs to ask: Does his sister still live? And if so, how can he find her? The fortuneteller's mysterious answer (an elephant! An elephant will lead him there!) sets off a chain of events so remarkable, so impossible, that you will hardly dare to believe it's true. With atmospheric illustrations by fine artist Yoko Tanaka, here is a dreamlike and captivating tale that could only be narrated by Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo. In this timeless fable, she evokes the largest of themes—hope and belonging, desire and compassion—with the lightness of a magician's touch.

  Magician's Elephant
Mercy Watson: Something Wonky This Way Comes
illustrated by Chris Van Dusen
Mercy Watson #6
Candlewick, 2009
ISBN 978-0763636449

The porcine wonder is off to the drive-in—and driven to follow that buttery smell—in a comic crescendo that reunites a familiar cast of characters.

Some may find it wonky to take a pig to the movies. But not Mr. and Mrs. Watson, who think the title of the film, WHEN PIGS FLY, is inspirational. And not their beloved Mercy, who is inspired by the fact that the drive-in proudly serves real butter on its Bottomless Bucket of popcorn. So when they pull up in their convertible, Mercy lifts her snout and becomes a pig on a mission— for what is more heavenly than being hot on the trail of a true butter smell?

  Mercy Watson: Something Wonky This Way Comes
Louise, the Adventures of a Chicken
illustrated by Harry Bliss
Joanna Cotler, 2008
ISBN 978-0060755546

She longed for adventure. So she left her home and ventured out into the wide world. The pleasures and perils she met proved plentiful: marauding pirates on the majestic seas, a ferocious lion under the bright lights of the big top, a mysterious stranger in an exotic and bustling bazaar. Yet in the face of such daunting danger, our heroine...

She was brave. She was fearless. She was feathered.

She was a chicken.

A not-so-chicken chicken.

  Louise, the Adventures of a Chicken
Mercy Watson Thinks Like a Pig
illustrated by Chris Van Dusen
Mercy Watson #5
Candlewick, 2008
ISBN 978-0763632656

Eugenia and Baby Lincoln may live next door to a pig, but that doesn’t stop them from living a gracious life. And the amiable Mercy Watson is equally determined to follow the delightful scent (and delicious taste) of the pansies her thoughtful neighbors are planting to beautify their yard. "Where have all the flowers gone?" shouts Eugenia, who is finally ready to take extreme measures —and dial Animal Control! Has Mercy’s swine song come at last? Or will her well-pampered instincts keep her in buttered toast?

  Mercy Watson Thinks Like a Pig
Great Joy
illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline
Candlewick, 2007
ISBN 978-14063108320

Just before Christmas, an organ grinder and his monkey appear on the street corner outside Frances' apartment. Frances can see them from her window and, sometimes, when it's quiet, she can hear their music. She can't stop thinking about them, especially after she sees the man and his monkey sleeping outside on the cold street at midnight. Even when it is her turn to speak in the Christmas play, all she can think about is the organ grinder's sad eyes. Everyone is silent until Frances finds the perfect words to share, just in time.

  Great Joy
Mercy Watson, Princess in Disguise
illustrated by Chris Van Dusen
Mercy Watson #4
Candlewick, 2007
ISBN 978-0-7636-3014-0

Can visions of treats entice a porcine wonder to wear her princess costume? Hold on for some Halloween havoc, Mercy Watson-style!

When the Watsons decide to zip their porcine wonder into a formfitting princess dress for Halloween—complete with tiara—they are certain that Mercy will be beautiful beyond compare. Mercy is equally certain she likes the sound of trick-or-TREATING and can picture those piles of buttered toast already. As for the Lincoln Sisters next door, how could they know that their cat would get into the act and lead them all on a Halloween "parade" of hysterical proportions? Kate DiCamillo’s beguiling pig is back in a tale full of treats, tricky turns, hijinks, and high humor.

  Mercy Watson Princess in Disguise
Mercy Watson Fights Crime
illustrated by Chris Van Dusen
Mercy Watson #3
Candlewick, 2006
ISBN 978-0-7636-2590-0

Leroy Ninker is a small man with a big dream: he wants to be a cowboy, but for now he's just a thief. In fact, Leroy is robbing the Watsons' kitchen right this minute! As he drags the toaster across the counter — screeeeeech — and drops it into his bag — clannngggg — little does he know that a certain large pig who loves toast with a great deal of butter is stirring from sleep. Even less could he guess that comedy of errors (not to mention the buttery sweets in his pocket) will soon lead this little man on the wild and raucous rodeo ride he's always dreamed of! Nosy neighbors, astonished firemen, a puzzled policeman, and the ever-doting Watsons return for a new tongue-in-snout adventure about Kate DiCamillo's delightfully single-minded pig.

  Mercy Watson Fights Crime
Mercy Watson Goes for a Ride
illustrated by Chris Van Dusen
Mercy Watson #2
Candlewick, 2006
ISBN 978-0-7636-2332-6

Mr. and Mrs. Watson's porcine wonder, Mercy, loves nothing more than a ride in the car. It takes a fair amount of nudging and bribing and a "You are such a good sport, darling" to get the portly pig out of the driver's seat, but once the convertible is on the road, Mercy loves the feel of the wind tickling her ears and the sun on her snout. One day the Watsons' motoring ritual takes an unexpected turn, however, when their elderly neighbor Baby Lincoln pops up in the backseat in hopes of some "folly and adventure" — and in the chaos that ensues, an exuberant Mercy ends up behind the wheel! Soon there's a policeman on her tail, a struggle for the brake, and a blissfully airborne Mercy. Of course, it's nothing that an extra helping of buttered toast can't fix!

  Mercy WatsonGoes for a Ride

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane
Candlewick, 2006
illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline
ages 4 to 8, ISBN 978-0-7636-2589-4

The Newbery Medal-winning author of "The Tale of Despereaux" returns with this story about a toy china rabbit named Edward Tulane. When he becomes lost, Edward takes an extraordinary journey and shows readers a true miracle.

Awards
Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Fiction

 
Mercy Watson to the Rescue
illustrated by Chris Van Dusen
Mercy Watson #1
Candlewick, 2005
ages 4 to 8, ISBN 978-0-7636-2270-1

Welcome to the wry and endearing world of Mercy Watson—the beloved "porcine wonder" of the Watson household. In a new series from the author of THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX and BECAUSE OF WINN-DIXIE, readers meet the portly, good-natured,toast-loving Mercy. In this first episode, the Watsons need rescuing when their bed—after Mercy hops on—begins to slowly sink through the floor. Mercy escapes—"to alert the fire department," her owners assure themselves.But could Mercy have another emergency in mind—like a sudden craving for their neighbors’ sugar cookies?

Awards
2007 Theodor Geisel Honor Book

 
The Tale of Despereaux
illustrated by Timothy Basil Ering
Candlewick Press, 2003
ages 9 to 12, ISBN 978-0-7636-1722-6

Kate DiCamillo introduces a hero for all time!

Welcome to the story of Despereaux Tilling, a mouse who is in love with music, stories, and a princess named Pea. It is also the story of a rat called Roscuro, who lives in the darkness and covets a world filled with light. And it is the story of Miggery Sow, a slow-witted serving girl who harbors a simple, impossible wish. These three characters are about to embark on a journey that will lead them down into a horrible dungeon, up into a glittering castle, and, ultimately, into each other's lives. And what happens then? As Kate DiCamillo would say: "Reader, it is your destiny to find out."

From the master storyteller who brought us Because of Winn-Dixie comes another classic, a fairy tale full of quirky, unforgettable characters, featuring twenty-four stunning black-and-white illustrations by Timothy Basil Ering, in an elegant design that pays tribute to the best in classic children's books and bookmaking traditions.

Awards
2004 Newbery Medal

  Tale of Despereaux
The Tiger Rising
Candlewick Press, 2001
ages 9 to 12, ISBN 978-0-7636-0911-5

A multifaceted story with characters who will tug at readers' hearts. Rob and his father moved to Lister, FL, to try to begin life anew without Rob's mother, who recently died from cancer. The boy goes through his days like a sleepwalker, with little or no visible emotion. "He made all his feelings go inside the suitcase; he stuffed them in tight and then sat on the suitcase and locked it shut." His sadness permeates the story; even the weather, with its constant dreary drizzle is sad. With the arrival of a new student, Sistine Bailey, Rob's self-contained world begins to crumble. He and Sistine are both friendless and victims of the cruelty often shown outsiders at school. The principal, worried about contagion, decides that Rob should remain at home until the rash on his legs improves. Rob appreciates the respite and Sistine appears daily on the pretense of bringing him his homework. She seems to have the keys to unlock the suitcase on Rob's "not-wishes and not-thoughts." When the boy finds a caged tiger in the woods, he recognizes a similarity between himself and the animal. Then the sleazy owner of the motel where Rob and his dad are living gives him the responsibility of feeding the creature, and Rob realizes he finally holds in his hands the keys to freedom. Quotes from William Blake's "The Tiger" intimate themselves into the narrative and set the tone. This slender story is lush with haunting characters and spare descriptions, conjuring up vivid images. It deals with the tough issues of death, grieving, and the great accompanying sadness, and has enough layers to embrace any reader. —School Library Journal

Awards
2001 NationalBook Award finalist; BookSense 76 Top 10 Picks

  The Tiger Rising
Because of Winn-Dixie
Candlewick Press, 2000
ages 9 to 12, ISBN 978-0-7636-0776-0

The summer Opal and her father, the preacher, move to Naomi, Florida, Opal goes into the Winn-Dixie supermarket-and comes out with a dog. A big, ugly, suffering dog with a sterling sense of humor. A dog she dubs Winn-Dixie. Because of Winn-Dixie, the preacher tells Opal ten things about her absent mother, one for each year Opal has been alive. Winn-Dixie is better at making friends than anyone Opal has ever known, and together they meet the local librarian, Miss Franny Block, who once fought off a bear with a copy of War and Peace. They meet Gloria Dump, who is nearly blind but sees with her heart, and Otis, an ex-con who sets the animals in his pet shop loose after hours, then lulls them with his guitar.

Opal spends all that sweet summer collecting stories about her new friends, and thinking about her mother. But because of Winn-Dixie or perhaps because she has grown, Opal learns to let go, just a little, and that friendship-and forgiveness-can sneak up on you like a sudden summer storm.

Recalling the fiction of Harper Lee and Carson McCullers, here is a funny, poignant, and utterly genuine first novel from a major new talent.

Awards
2001 Newbery Honor book; 2000 Parents' Choice® Gold Award Winner

  Because ofWinn-Dixie

Copyright 2002- Children's Literature Network.