Kate DiCamillo is the author of The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane (2006) as well as Because of Winn Dixie (2009), both of which are delightful, and have been lauded as such in both the academic and public spheres. Despereaux won the Newbery award, and is touted as associated with the Cinderella trope. This is a fiction. While it does concern a mouse helping a princess, there are no elements of the Cinderella tale itself in the story. It is a pleasant enough story, in itself, but the authorial tone is both colloquial and antiquated, in ways that are jarring and patronizing. I don’t know what a child would feel, but I found it difficult to read despite the originality of plot and the pleasant character of Despereaux himself.