THE TICKY-TACKY DOLL by Cynthia Rylant


by & illustrated by
Age Range: 3 - 7
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A graceful tale about coping with the pangs of separation. A hand-sewn doll is a girl’s constant companion, lovingly carted to and from every activity. Yet when the time for school arrives, the girl makes the distressing discovery that her beloved friend must stay home. With humbly eloquent prose, Rylant (The Storm, above, etc.) describes the abiding bonds between a young child and her favored doll. “Well, the little girl might as well have been asked to leave her nose behind, or her two ears. . . . The ticky-tacky doll was much a part of her as eyes or ears or a nose, and the little girl did not know how else to be.” When the girl fails to thrive at school, too distracted by her loss and longing, the adults in her life are baffled. All except for her grandmother, who, with consummate understanding about the pain of separation from loved ones, is able to ease the girl’s heartache with a surprisingly simple solution. A teeny-tiny version of the doll tucked into her school bag enables the child to confidently attend school, secure in the knowledge that a little bit of love from home is with her. Stevenson’s (Shadows, p. 189, etc.) acrylic and crayon illustrations resonate with the emotions of the tale. Rendered in a muted palette of gentle colors, the heavily textured illustrations are an elegant extension of Rylant’s deeply moving story. A treasure to share with young ones who are approaching this momentous milestone. (Picture book. 3-7)

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-15-201078-5
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Harcourt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2002


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