The Doll People
The Doll People
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Series: The Doll People Vol. 1   

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Annotation: A family of porcelain dolls that has lived in the same house for one hundred years is taken aback when a new family of plastic dolls arrives and doesn't follow The Doll Code of Honor.
Catalog Number: #4818816
Format: Paperback
All Formats: Search
Special Formats: Chapter Book Chapter Book
Copyright Date: 2000
Edition Date: 2002
Illustrator: Selznick, Brian,
Pages: 256 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: 0-7868-1240-0
ISBN 13: 978-0-7868-1240-0
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 98012344
Dimensions: 23 cm.
Subject Heading:
Dolls. Fiction.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
It's not easy to write a good book about dolls. There are so many things to work out. Are the dolls "alive" ? Is there consistency to their existence? How do they navigate outside their home? Martin and Godwin not only set up a realistic doll world but also provide a credible mystery. Annabelle and her Doll family have lived in the dollhouse, now owned by Kate, since it came from England several generations before. In 1955, Aunt Sarah Doll disappeared, and Annabelle, with the help of Sarah's journal, is determined to find her. The authors add a wickedly funny touch with the introduction of the Funmarts, a dollhouse family meant to placate Kate's little sister, who's always messing with the Dolls. The Funmarts are a brash, breezy family of plastic dolls who can't believe the Dolls don't have a microwave. Still, Anabelle and Tiffany Funmart become friends and are soon taking great risks to find out what happened to Aunt Sarah. The story gets a wonderful boost from Brian Selznick's pencil drawings, which include charming endpapers. He catches every bit of humor, especially when he's drawing those Funmarts.
Horn Book
Bothered that she hasn't seen her aunt Sarah for forty-five years, Annabelle Doll embarks on a search that takes her out of her protective dollhouse. She braves dangerous territory beyond the nursery to discover not only the answers to family secrets but also a whole new family of dolls. Black-and-white pencil drawings illustrate this lively addition to the doll-fantasy genre.
Kirkus Reviews
Little girls are in for a marvelous treat in this delicious fantasy that captures many of the rituals, fancies, and habits of girlhood with sweetness and honesty, while imparting gentle lessons about risk, self-fulfillment, and dealing with difference. Annabelle Doll lives with her family in their dollhouse in Kate's room: her family of Victorian china dolls had belonged to Kate's grandmother, and mother, and now belongs to Kate. Like the characters in Toy Story , the doll family has elaborate rituals for activity when the human family is asleep or occupied, and Annabelle's parents are extremely protective and fearful. They've all taken the Doll Oath to keep their lives secret and fear Permanent Doll State, when they would simply be inanimate at all times (Barbies never take the Oath, and are always inanimate, we learn). But Auntie Sarah has disappeared (45 years ago) and Annabelle, who's discovered her journal, longs to bring her back. Kate's pesky little sister Nora soon acquires a dollhouse of her own, and the Funcraft family, with their modern ways and funky plastic accoutrements, inspire Annabelle, who becomes best friends with Tiffany Funcraft. Tiffany and Annabelle form a private club, share secrets, and contrast their families in ways that will resonate with every girl who has ever wondered if her dolls talk to each other. In the end, they find Auntie Sarah and rescue Papa Doll from the fiendish clutches of the cat. The whole is fabulously illustrated by Selznick, whose pictures have a shapely richness that captures not only the sturdy tubbiness of the modern dolls, but the fragile rigidity of the Victorian ones. (Fiction. 8-12)
Publishers Weekly

This novel, named a PW Best Book of 2000, introduces the Doll family, who has lived in the same dollhouse, in the same room of a family's home for 100 years. "The authors provide plenty of action and suspense, but it is their skillfully crafted details about the dolls' personalities and daily routines that prove most memorable. A fun-filled adventure free from nostalgia," wrote PW in a starred review. Ages 8-12. (Sept.)

School Library Journal
Gr 3-5-A lighthearted touch and a dash of drama make this a satisfying read. When Annabelle Doll finds her Aunt Sarah's journal, she hopes it offers a clue to the whereabouts of her aunt, who has been missing for 45 years. Annabelle is forever eight years old-the same age as Kate, the current owner of the Victorian dollhouse in which she and her family have lived for the past century. Their new neighbors, the all-plastic Funcrafts, who arrive for Kate's younger sister's birthday, are modern and brashly confident. Their pink plastic house has a barbecue, a computer, and a VCR. Tiffany, the Funcraft doll-girl, is just the right age to be a first real friend for Annabelle, and her daring spirit inspires the child's quest for her aunt. Determined and brave, she persuades her cautious parents to let her venture out of the dollhouse in search of her relative. Along with the usual perils of moving about in the real world, there is the risk of being seen by a human and succumbing to "doll state" or even worse, "permanent doll state." Selznick's illustrations are perfectly suited to the innocent charm of the dolls and do much to draw readers into their world. The delightful endpapers, which resemble pages from toy catalogs past and present, tell their own tale about the characters. A light and uncomplicated fantasy/adventure in the tradition of Rumer Godden's doll stories or even Pam Conrad's The Tub People (HarperCollins, 1989).-Kathie Meizner, Montgomery County Public Libraries, Chevy Chase, MD Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Word Count: 33,857
Reading Level: 4.0
Interest Level: 2-5
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 4.0 / points: 5.0 / quiz: 41789 / grade: Middle Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:3.8 / points:9.0 / quiz:Q22173
Lexile: 630L
Guided Reading Level: S
Fountas & Pinnell: S

Annabelle Doll is eight years old-she has been for more than a hundred years. Not a lot has happened to her, cooped up in the dollhouse, with the same doll family, day after day, year after year. . . until one day the Funcrafts move in.

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