This book is sad at times! At one point, while reading this book, I started crying. There was something happening in the plot regarding a little boy who was abused and underfed. There was a scene when he walked into a diner. It was when he could smell toast, fried chicken, and coffee that made this beautiful smell of warm, good food that he probably could not afford to buy that I began to tear up. My mom walked in the room while I was reading the ARC and asked, "Are you crying over a children's book?" I responded tearfully (and somewhat incoherently) "Little boy, abused, lack of food he can't have, underfed, terrible father, diner, fried chicken, coffee, and toast!" She then said, "Isn't it time to take a break? You know you don't have to read it." My mom! Correct as usual! However, I had the advanced reading copy for the bookstore I worked at. I needed to know what to tell kids and parents if they should ask. There was no need for that bit of work. That book stood in a display around Easter and sold itself! The selling power of Kate DiCamillo's books is extraordinary! Looking back on it, I found the writing beautiful. Also, I notice that the intended audience reacts differently than I did. Children just seem to love it a lot. Lately I have begun to think that Kate is our very own equivalent of E.B White. Both authors are adept at junior fiction, and have such talent for making it very rich, meaningful reading. They both make every word count so thoughtfully. Both authors have given us such treasures of books full of wisdom. I wish I could thank them personally for their extremely well crafted writing.