A porcelain doll unearthed by her father's plow becomes a small girl's constant companion and, later, an heirloom in this true family story. Writing in a quietly matter-off-act tone, Kirkpatrick (a poet) describes the girl's peaceful life on a turn-of-the-century Iowa farm and her discovery of the mysterious doll that goes with her as she grows up, moves into town, tells its story to her children and grandchildren, and passes it on at last. The illustrations, done by the author's sister in a flowing, naive style, focus attention on the farmyard in different seasons and on small domestic details: shelves of mason jars, kitchen and barn implements, calico and wallpaper patterns. The tiny figurine doesn't appear until halfway through, its origin never does come to light, and, remaining unclothed until near the end, it has a pagan look. The doll is a symbol of the theme that stories connect a family to its past. A simply presented but multilayered tale.