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The Tiger Rising


The Tiger Rising Cover

ISBN13: 9780763618988
ISBN10: 0763618985
Condition: Standard
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That morning, after he discovered the tiger, Rob went and stood under the Kentucky Star Motel sign and waited for the school bus just like it was any other day. The Kentucky Star sign was composed of a yellow neon star that rose and fell over a piece of blue neon in the shape of the state of Kentucky. Rob liked the sign; he harbored a dim but abiding notion that it would bring him good luck.

Finding the tiger had been luck, he knew that. He had been out in the woods behind the Kentucky Star Motel, way out in the woods, not really looking for anything, just wandering, hoping that maybe he would get lost or get eaten by a bear and not have to go to school ever again. That¹s when he saw the old Beauchamp gas station building, all boarded up and tumbling down; next to it, there was a cage, and inside the cage, unbelievably, there was a tiger?a real-life, very large tiger pacing back and forth. He was orange and gold and so bright, it was like staring at the sun itself, angry and trapped in a cage.

It was early morning and it looked like it might rain; it had been raining every day for almost two weeks. The sky was gray and the air was thick and still. Fog was hugging the ground. To Rob, it seemed as if the tiger was some magic trick, rising out of the mist. He was so astounded at his discovery, so amazed, that he stood and stared. But only for a minute; he was afraid to look at the tiger for too long, afraid that the tiger would disappear. He stared, and then he turned and ran back into the woods, toward the Kentucky Star. And the whole way home, while his brain doubted what he had seen, his heart beat out the truth to him. Ti-ger. Ti-ger. Ti-ger.

That was what Rob thought about as he stood beneath the Kentucky Star sign and waited for the bus. The tiger. He did not think about the rash on his legs, the itchy red blisters that snaked their way into his shoes. His father said that it would be less likely to itch if he didn't think about it.

And he did not think about his mother. He hadn¹t thought about her since the morning of the funeral, the morning he couldn¹t stop crying the great heaving sobs that made his chest and stomach hurt. His father, watching him, standing beside him, had started to cry, too.

They were both dressed up in suits that day; his father¹s suit was too small. And when he slapped Rob to make him stop crying, he ripped a hole underneath the arm of his jacket.

"There ain't no point in crying," his father had said afterward. "Crying ain't going to bring her back."

It had been six months since that day, six months since he and his father had moved from Jacksonville to Lister, and Rob had not cried since, not once. The final thing he did not think about that morning was getting onto the bus. He specifically did not think about Norton and Billy Threemonger waiting for him like chained and starved guard dogs, eager to attack.

Copyright © 2001 by Kate Dicamillo

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Kessa, October 30, 2011 (view all comments by Kessa)
The Life of Pi,The Prince of Tides, The Tiger Rising... there's something immediately heartbreaking and primal in a tIger- in-a -cage story. I read this book aloud to my two boys (9 and 12) and when we got to the climax, we all gasped and I had to read the rest through tears (my own and theirs)- the first time that's ever happened in 12 years of nightly read-alouds. We also all laughed out loud with Willie May's perfect wisdom, and felt fierce with Sistine. In so short a book, it seems impossible to have become so attached to the characters, but we were right alongside them every step of the way.
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Product Details

Dicamillo, Kate
Candlewick Press (MA)
performance Read:
Dylan Baker.
DiCamillo, Kate
New York, N.Y.
Children's 9-12 - Fiction - General
Social Situations - Friendship
Social Issues - Friendship
Family - General
Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Magic
Children s Animals-Animal Stories-Lions, Tigers and Other Big Cats
Edition Number:
1st paperback ed.
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
August 2002
Grade Level:
from 5
36 x 13.5 x 5 in 12.7 lb
Age Level:

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Related Subjects

Children's » Animals » Lions, Tigers, Leopards, etc.
Children's » Middle Readers » General
Young Adult » Fiction » Social Issues » Friendship
Young Adult » General

The Tiger Rising Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$2.95 In Stock
Product details 128 pages Candlewick Press - English 9780763618988 Reviews:
"Review" by , "DiCamillo's second novel may not be as humorous as her debut...but it is just as carefully structured, and her ear is just as finely tuned to her characters....DiCamillo demonstrates her versatility by treating themes similar to those of her first novel with a completely different approach. Readers will eagerly anticipate her next work."
"Review" by , "The story deftly shows the anxiety and suspense of getting close to someone after experience has taught you that may not be safe to do. DiCamillo's gorgeous language wastes not a single word: spare and taut her sentences spin out, with the Florida mist rising off them, and unspoken words finally said aloud."
"Review" by , "[H]as a certain mythic quality. However, the spare prose is weighed down with significance....Heavy-handed symbolism and sentimentality overwhelm the book's limited characterizations....[T]he caged animal that serves as this novel's central metaphor never seems more than a paper tiger."
"Review" by , "A multifaceted story with characters who will tug at readers' hearts....[L]ush 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."
"Review" by , "Artfully executed, this short novel is a treat for the heart and soul."
"Review" by , "This short novel will be especially useful for those students dealing with the loss of a loved one, but fine stories are rare, and this one will be read eagerly by all audiences."
"Synopsis" by , Rob, who passes the time in his rural Florida community by wood carving, is drawn by his spunky friend, Sistine, into a plan to free a caged tiger. Illustrations.
"Synopsis" by , Eleven-year-old Rob Horton finds a caged tiger in the woods behind the hotel where he and his father live. With the help of his new friend, Sistine Bailey, Rob must decide what to do with his discovery, while at the same time coming to terms with his past.
"Synopsis" by , The Tiger Rising, 4 copies,
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