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“Ever since we’ve had this doll,” Elizabeth said hesitantly, “we’ve had funny things happen – the same dreams and knowing things and stuff like that.”
Twins Jane and Elizabeth are twelve years old and have outgrown dolls. Nevertheless, on a cold wet spring Saturday they find themselves in an antique store, inexplicably drawn to a small, tattered old fashioned doll. Even the owner of the store seems to understand that the doll somehow belongs to the girls.
Once the twins buy the doll, stranger and stranger things begin to happen, and a young girl from the past seems to be calling out to them. The search to discover the history of the little doll brings the twins terrifyingly close to the world of the supernatural as they finally solve a tantalizing mystery.
Janet Lunn’s first novel, long unavailable, is republished in a fresh, beautiful edition.
Age Level: 8 and up | Grade Level: 3 and up
Elizabeth had denied all knowledge of the mess. Hurt, she had gone upstairs to her own room. As she often did these days, she went to the window seat to tell Amelia all about it. Amelia wasn’t there. She looked in the space inside the window seat. The doll wasn’t there either, nor in the closet, nor on the chair, nor any other place in the room. Back to the window seat she went in panic, to have another look. From the window she could see Jane coming up the garden walk. Forgetting they were
the way,” she said, “not messing in my kitchen or my sewing things.” (That’s the second time, thought Elizabeth and promised herself to speak to William.) She gave them an errand to do in the wool shop on Temperance Street and threatened them with horrifying consequences if they were not home on time. They went upstairs, put on their matching red and white striped dresses (“People are always more helpful when we dress alike,” said Elizabeth. Jane snorted but obeyed.), and off they went to the
behavior talks”). Aunt Alice was certainly the right person to take an antique doll to show. Suddenly Elizabeth remembered, “We don’t know where she lives.” “Yes we do,” crowed Jane, “or anyway, I do. Aunt Alice told me we should come down to the beach and go swimming when the warm weather comes and I asked her for directions.” “Do you have them here?” “Yep. I put them in my purse so I’d have them – just in case.” Elizabeth was dumbfounded. She could never get over the way Jane always made
house, and finally, lying on her bed with her head hung backward over the edge. It had all been no use. “The only odd thing that happened,” she told Jane, “was that I thought for a moment that I saw you in an old-fashioned bedroom with roses on the wallpaper, but it went away so soon I’m not sure about it now.” It was almost too much for Jane. She didn’t say anything. She couldn’t tell that she had seen it too. Not right then. She had to think about if for a while first. She put on her bathing
questions. “Who is Amelia? And who is Hester?” “Oh, just a made-up person, both of them are made-up people. It was all make-believe,” Jane said quickly. “No, it wasn’t,” asserted William. “You went all over the place looking for her house and …” “Well, it was just pretend,” Jane was trying very hard not to sound angry. “Who is Hester?” Aunt Alice directed her question this time, and her piercing gaze, toward William. “I don’t know,” answered William, “but she’s somebody Jane ’n’ Liza don’t