THE RICHEST DOLL IN THE WORLD by Polly M. Robertus

THE RICHEST DOLL IN THE WORLD

Age Range: 8 - 9
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KIRKUS REVIEW

One disastrous Christmas Eve, a year after the death of her parents, Emily sidesteps day care and surreptitiously follows Grandma Rose, a housecleaner, to Mrs. Bigley’s mansion, lured by her fascination with Delilah. This fabulous porcelain doll has luxuriated in Mrs. Bigley’s family for five generations, where, upon the catastrophic accidental death of her daughter, she has become the focus of Mrs. Bigley’s twisted, guilty fixation. It’s a potentially deadly journey Emily takes, as her subterfuge leaves her locked out in the cold before eventually reuniting with her grandmother. It’s just as critical a psychological quest for Mrs. Bigley, who must drop her psychotic attachment to the porcelain and lace, yet not as realistic as Emily’s. The two maneuver through their plot-driven scenarios, rushing toward a collision. The seriousness of Mrs. Bigley’s mental illness demands a more rigorous explanation of her cure than her decision to create a doll museum. Her growth and self-revelation, therefore, are as empty as the final pronouncement a year later that this holiday is “the happiest Christmas ever,” an unearned result of simplification and quick plotting. (Fiction. 8-9)

Pub Date: April 15th, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-8234-2121-3
Page count: 130pp
Publisher: Holiday House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2008