Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Thursday, November 4, 2010


My youngest son, Jon, came home after class a couple of days ago and told me that his junior college was having a used book sale.  Before I knew it, he was pulling something out of his backpack and pushing it into my hands.  He looked at me hopefully and said, "Is this a good one, Mom?  I searched and searched  to find a good one for you." I looked down.  It was  THE BEST LOVED DOLL by Rebecca Caudill, with pictures by Elliott Gilbert.  He picked a winner!  Thanks, Jon!

A young girl named Betsy receives a party invitation which reads:
Bring one doll
to the party
this afternoon at four.
Prizes will be given for
the oldest doll,
the best-dressed doll, 
and the doll 
who can do the most things.

Betsy must decide which doll to bring. She has four:  a beautiful bride doll, an antique doll, a wind-up doll who can work a sewing machine, and her favorite - a worn out, rather tattered doll named Jennifer, who sits on Betsy's bed.  Betsy must decide if she'd rather bring a doll that will earn her a prize, or Jennifer.  You'll love what happens and you might even shed a few tears.

Did you have a best-loved doll?  My daughter loved all her dolls - she had baby dolls, paper dolls, "Polly Pockets", china dolls, a "Raggedy Ann", miniatures for her dollhouse, several Barbies, and "Samantha" and "Kirsten" American Girl dolls.  (I hope I'm not leaving someone out!)

This all got me thinking about the many stories involving dolls that my daughter and I read together...Laura Ingalls had a rag doll that she named Charlotte (though her first doll was a corn cob doll) and Sara Crewe had a doll named Emily.  In Beatrix Potter's THE TALE OF TWO BAD MICE, Tom Thumb and Hunca Munca vandalise the dollhouse of Lucinda and Jane.  Remember this vintage Sesame Street short, "Two Little Girls and a Little Dollhouse"? (it's worth a quick watch!) We had a similar experience when our pet rabbit got in my daughter's dollhouse!  

Here are some classic doll books that your daughter is sure to like...did I leave out your favorite?

A is for Annabelle: A Doll's Alphabet (Tasha Tudor Collection)

THE DOLLS' CHRISTMAS by Tasha Tudor (4-8)
Dolls Christmas (Tasha Tudor Collection)

THE STORY OF HOLLY AND IVY by Rumer Godden, pictures by Barbara Cooney (5 & up)
The Story of Holly and Ivy

MISS HAPPINESS AND MISS FLOWER by Rumer Godden, pictures by Gary Blythe (9-12)
Miss Happiness and Miss Flower. Rumer Godden

Four Dolls: "Impunity Jane", "Fairy Doll", "Story of Holly and Ivy" and "Candy Floss"

THE LONELY DOLL Story and Photographs by Dare Wright (4-8)
The Lonely Doll

1 comment:

  1. Aw Mom, I missed this post!!! The HOLLY AND IVY story is so heart-wrenching and so so good!!! I love all of these, really. I saw THE BEST LOVED DOLL at your house this week and wondered if there was a doll-entry in the works. :) Do you remember the 100 DRESSES story, too?? That's another very good one! Has more to do with Paper Dolls, though, I suppose.