Friday, October 9, 2009

Books: The Doll's House, by Rumer Godden

This was one of my favorite books as a child. To this day, I could still tell you exactly how to walk to the shelf that holds Rumer Godden's books in the children's room of the library - if, well, I could go back in time and the library were still there.

It's a beautiful book, with Tasha Tudor illustrations (sadly, no longer included in the current edition) that make me happy every time I see them.

It's about two little girls, and several little dolls, and the way that they all cope with an unexpected invader. It's charming and cute, certainly happily readable by children.

But Rumer Godden doesn't leave her books at funny flights of fancy. Even though the most important characters in the book are made of wood and celluloid and sawdust, this book has themes of wishes and dreams, of the desire for a home and a place in the world, of hopes fulfilled and the price that that fulfillment may demand. It has Evil and Loyalty and Courage and, most importantly, Heroism. Birdie is a heroine, one that still moves me today, even if she is made of celluloid.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

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