The Tiger Rising is another award winning book for students Grades 5 and up by author Kate DiCamillo.
DiCamillo, author of Because of Winn-Dixie has created another character that your students are sure to love!
Rob Horton and his father live in a run down motel in a small town in Florida. They moved to this small town shortly after Rob's mom, Caroline, died of cancer. Rob and his dad quickly learn that running away and refusing to talk about their loss does not help them escape the pain. When Rob finds a caged tiger in the woods behind the motel, and is forced by its owner to feed it, he adds it to the long list of things he doesn't talk about with anyone.
Rob is picked on mercilessly by the town bullies about the blisters and rashes that he has developed on his legs. He dreads going to school and resigns himself to being the 6th grade class loner. But when a new strong-willed girl named Sistine moves to town, Rob begins to think his luck might be changing. As his friendship grows with Sistine, he reluctantly begins to share information about himself, including his knowledge of the tiger in the woods. Sistine is convinced they need to let the tiger go, but Rob fears the consequences will be too much.
This is a quick read and students will quickly become attached to Rob and feel compassion for the pain Rob feels. This is a fantastic book to talk to your students about empathy. And a great story to show students that we can always have hope in all circumstances.
Will Rob let the tiger free? Will he open the cages of his own grief? You can find The Tiger Rising here.