The Tale of Despereaux is a children's fantasy novel by American writer Kate DiCamillo, published in 2004. The story follows Despereaux Tilling, a brave, music-loving mouse, as he tries to rescue a human princess named Pea from a group of rats. The novel is divided into four sections, with the first three each telling the story from a different character's perspective. Book one tells Despereaux's story from his birth in a castle to his falling in love with Princess Pea and his adventures from then on. Book two follows Roscuro, a rat who loves light, and who has an unpleasant encounter with the royal family in the castle. Book three centres on Miggery "Mig" Sow, a lazy servant girl at the castle who promises to help Roscuro in return for becoming princess herself. In book four, the stories of all three central characters converge, and Despereaux, Roscuro, Mig, and Princess Pea all become friends. The Tale of Despereaux won the Newbery Medal in 2004.


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