Review: The Trumpet of the Swan by E.B. White

   Title: The Trumpet of the Swan
Author: E.B. White
Publisher: HarperCollins

originally published in 1948

I purchased this book.

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Louis the trumpeter swan was born mute. His only chance a living a normal life was to find a way to communicate. His father steals a trumpet, which Louis learns to play. It becomes his substitute voice, his claim to fame, and the instrument with which he courts the love of his life.

The Trumpet of the Swan is the first novel we’ve read aloud. As in, not a picture book, but an actual novel. So exciting! We finished reading it the day after Christmas.

Me: What did you think of The Trumpet of the Swan?
C (age 4 1/2): It was gooooooooood. Let’s read it again!
Me: What was your favorite part?
C: Ummm… When Louis’s dad got hurt when he flew into the glass of the music store. Into the window.
Me: Really?! Why is that your favorite part?
C: Because, when I skinned my knee it really hurt and I cried. It’s just like in the story.

I love that she found a way to sympathize with the experiences of the characters in the story. She talked about that particular scene (when Louis’s father steals the trumpet) pretty much for the rest of the book. “Did Louis’s dad cry? Did it bleed? Did he need a band-aid?”

Louis is business savvy and has a keen sense of right and wrong. He faces some challenging situations but handles them all with intelligence, courage, compassion, and grace. He never lets his disability stop him from having the life he wants, and he works patiently and hard to achieve that. There are a lot of good messages in this novel.

I remember loving this book as a kid, and reading it multiple times. I enjoyed revisiting it with C.