Doll Bones

Hardcover | May 7, 2013

byHolly BlackIllustratorEliza Wheeler

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Discover the Newbery Honor winner Doll Bones, from Holly Black, the cocreator of the Spiderwick Chronicles. A Kirkus Reviews Best Book. A School Library Journal Best Book. A Booklist Editor’s Choice Books for Youth. A Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Book. A NYPL “100 Titles for Reading and Sharing.” A 2013 Goodreads Choice award nominee. A People Magazine “Best New Kids Book.” Six starred reviews!

Winner of a 2014 Newbery Honor Medal.

Zach, Poppy, and Alice have been friends forever. And for almost as long, they’ve been playing one continuous, ever-changing game of pirates and thieves, mermaids and warriors. Ruling over all is the Great Queen, a bone-china doll cursing those who displease her.

But they are in middle school now. Zach’s father pushes him to give up make-believe, and Zach quits the game. Their friendship might be over, until Poppy declares she’s been having dreams about the Queen—and the ghost of a girl who will not rest until the bone-china doll is buried in her empty grave.

Zach and Alice and Poppy set off on one last adventure to lay the Queen’s ghost to rest. But nothing goes according to plan, and as their adventure turns into an epic journey, creepy things begin to happen. Is the doll just a doll or something more sinister? And if there really is a ghost, will it let them go now that it has them in its clutches?

Doll Bones is a winner of the Newbery Honor, is the recipient of six starred reviews, was on four Best Book lists, and was called "perfect" by The New York Times.

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From the Publisher

Discover the Newbery Honor winner Doll Bones, from Holly Black, the cocreator of the Spiderwick Chronicles. A Kirkus Reviews Best Book. A School Library Journal Best Book. A Booklist Editor’s Choice Books for Youth. A Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Book. A NYPL “100 Titles for Reading and Sharing.” A 2013 Goodreads Choice award nominee. A People Magazine “Best New Kids Book.” Six starred review...

Holly Black was born in New Jersey in 1971. She graduated with a B.A. in English from The College of New Jersey in 1994. Her first book, Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale was published in 2002 and was included in the American Library Association's Best Books for Young Adults. She has since written two other books in the same universe, Valiant (2005), and the sequel to Tithe, Ironside (2007). Valiant was a finalist for the ...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:256 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.9 inPublished:May 7, 2013Publisher:Margaret K. McElderry BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1416963987

ISBN - 13:9781416963981

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Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from Dark and creepy yet sweet and wise Mini Book Review: A delightfully dark and creepy tale, perfect for the more sophisticated middle grader. As an adult reading it reminded me of that time in your life where you are still a child but things are becoming more complicated as you move into the teenage years. I was hooked into this one right away and didn't want to put it down. I hate to invoke the term "coming of age" but it really is the heart of the story. In fact coming of age -- meets creepy china doll (ok creepy and china doll - same thing - man those toys always creep the hell out of me) really sums it up. All of the characters are realistic and I really enjoyed the fact that the parents were not caricatures. A nice quick read that will hook the right kid.. A truly imaginative and adventurous story of friendship, growing up all wrapped up with a mysterious ghost story involving a china doll. Man wish there were more of these types of stories when I was that age. Also, Black really has a gift when it comes to setting a mood - felt like I was living the adventure with Zach, Poppy and Alice. One last thing -- excellent Librarian character who was also not a caricature. Favorite Quote "There was a kind of quiet that hung over the world in the middle of the night, as though there was no one else awake anywhere. It felt ripe with magic and endless possiblitiy." 4 Dewey's Jenn H sent this to me from OLA
Date published: 2013-07-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Creepy and fantastic Middle Grade I have never read Holly Black before *hides* but after this I NEED all of her books. Every scrap of paper she has ever put words on. Some people think it’s strange that I read so much middle grade. And I always tell them that a good story is a good story no matter what demographic it’s aimed at. Doll Bones is an example of how true that can be. Sure, it’s short and simple and at times down right adorable, but it’s also haunting, atmospheric, beautifully written and compelling. I think the thing that hit me right off that bat about this book was that it was so much creepier than I expected. I guess the cover should have tipped me off. The doll on the cover is central to the story and is known as “The Queen.” And she is genuinely terrifying. Made from human bones, haunting these children, longing to be reburied. It gives me the heebie jeebies. Even if you don’t believe in ghosts it isn’t hard to imagine this doll staring at you with her lifeless eyes in the night… It’s creepy no matter how you look at it. But Doll Bones isn’t really the story of a doll. It’s the story of three friends – Zach, Poppy and Alice. It’s a story of friendship and growing up. On the brink of leaving childhood and becoming teenagers Zach struggles to balance “growing up” with doing the things he loves with his childhood friends – in this case playing with dolls. There is a lot of pressure to fit in, or be who you think you’re supposed to be and I think these themes will resonate with all readers, no matter their age. I also think Holly Black makes some interesting points about gender roles and what boys/men are expected to enjoy and how they are supposed to act. It helps of course that the characters were so easy to like. I loved Zach. I thought he was honest, and quirky and fun. I liked Poppy and Alice as well but the longer I am separated from this book the more the two girls blend together. They felt like extras/side kicks to Zach’s lead. Which in the long run was disappointing but while I was reading it wasn’t really a problem. Recommendation: Doll Bones is example of middle grade story telling at its best. It’s smart and poignant and images of the Queen will continue you to haunt you long after you’ve finished reading. Holly Black’s Doll Bones is an example of how middle grade story telling can blow readers of all ages out of the water. This and other reviews at More Than Just Magic (http://morethanjustmagic.org)
Date published: 2013-05-14