THE STONE DOLL OF SISTER BRUTE by Lillian Hoban

THE STONE DOLL OF SISTER BRUTE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

At the end of The Little Brute Family, the Brutes change their name--and nature--to Nice; bringing 'em back bad poses problems that don't apply to most repeats. . . Sister Brute, wanting something to love, adopts a stone--she draws it a face. dresses it, and atones it Alice Brute Stone; she is adopted by an ugly dog wearing hob-nailed boots who wants someone to love him. But the doll is hard and heavy and the dog keeps kicking and Sister Brute has only tiredness and braises for her love, Mama Brute, confronted with the problem, is stymied until she looks at Alice Brute Stone's face; it is just like hers. "You could love me." she says, "and I will give you soft hugs and sing you lullabies." Each of the family, Sister Brute learns, has a special offering; she will love them all and Alice Brute Stone and the ugly kicking dog too. . . In the perfunctory introduction to the family. Mama and Papa seem typical impatient, preoccupied parents, funny-looking but not loutish enough to be funny to the child who's meeting them for the first time. On the other hand, the youngster who remembers their reform will wonder how come they're so nice before becoming Nice. It's a questionable parallel of the original with some undeniably touching images--Sister Brute fondling Alice Brute Stone; the buck-toothed yellow dog, really a rejected toy, claiming her affection because she pays attention to him; and Mama Brute seeing her own face in the stone.
Pub Date: Feb. 5th, 1968
ISBN: 0440406811
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Macmillan
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1st, 1968




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