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Among the Dolls

3.6 of 5 stars 3.60  ·  rating details  ·  386 ratings  ·  62 reviews
Vicky is disappointed in her birthday gift of a dollhouse, but she experiences real terror when she is drawn into the house and the lives of its malicious inhabitants.
Hardcover, 70 pages
Published October 13th 1975 by Dutton Juvenile (first published 1975)
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Best Books of 1975
47th out of 82 books — 27 voters
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Fictional Antiques & Collectibles
16th out of 79 books — 13 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 712)
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Orrin Grey
I'm waffling between three and four stars on this one. I didn't like it as much as Fingers, partly because it was shorter and simpler, but it was definitely creepy and once again Sleator did an amazing job of making things grotesque without ever feeling like he was dipping into distasteful. I'll give it four stars here, but it's probably closer to three-and-a-half.

Also, this was a really short read. Around 70 pages with big text and fully illustrated. I read it in under an hour.

Once again I didn
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[Name Redacted]
A deeply disturbing children's book by the author of "The Green Futures of Tycho". It was a pleasure to see a female protagonist as the lead in a story NOT focused on girl power/sisterhood, young romance or "growing up"; I was at times reminded of Neil Gaiman's book "Coraline" and at others of Jonathan Coulton's song "Creepy Doll". My only concern is that the book might not be long enough for older children while proving too disturbing or frightening for younger children. I suppose it will vary ...more
D.M. Dutcher
Weird, short book about a girl who gets a dollhouse instead of a bike for her birthday. She hates the dollhouse, and soon finds herself inside of it. And the dolls are not happy at how she's treated them.

The book is very brief, however, and the message is muddled badly. (view spoiler)
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Lisa
I love Sleator, but I really wish I'd given this one a miss. This was clearly written with a younger audience in mind.
Myles
I read this so many times growing up. Among the Dolls is a Prince among the dolls come alive and ruin your life books, of which there are more than a few. My shelves aren't up to snuff and listopia doesn't have quite the selection I'd like but Magical Toys and Sentient Toys are close. What surprised me about reading this now was how short Among the Dolls is. This book looms large in my memories, and I was an even more voracious reader back then. For 65 pages to have so much resonance is a testam ...more
Gale
GRIM STUDY IN DOLLHOUSE PLAY-THERAPY!

Disappointed that she did not receive a bicycle for her birthday and failing in school, Vicky acts out her frustration by being brutal with her newly-acquired Victorian dollhouse. When she is magically reduced in size and transported Inside her own dollhouse, she discovers that they blame Her for their wretched existence and--incredulous as it seems--the dolls want Revenge!

Can "only dolls" turn the tables and "play' with mini human beings for a change? Can
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SkeletalGarden.
Oct 11, 2010 SkeletalGarden. rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: kids who like "scary" books
All Vicky wants for her birthday is a brand new ten-speed bike, so you can imagine her disappointment when she receives a dark, gloomy, old antique doll house instead.

Things aren't going well for Vicky. She gets poor grades in school and doesn't have any friends due to her dreadful shyness. Her mother gets angry and takes it out on Vicky and her father. As things get worse, she begins to act out similar situations with the inhabitants of her dollhouse - a mother, a father, an aunt, a daughter an
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Samantha
This book was awesome! The story was really great. Vicky is a troubled young girl who receives an antique dollhouse for her birthday. As Vicky's parents begin to argue more, and her grades drop in school, she makes the dolls' lives as miserable as her own. Vicky makes the dolls fight, and has them sleep in uncomfortable places. One night Vicky finds herself IN the dollhouse, and now she must face the evil dolls she has created and find her way back home. I love creepy doll-themed plots and this ...more
Lisa Rathbun
Having loved "The Doll's House" by Rumer Godden as a child, I continue to like books about dollhouses. This one was moderately spooky and a relatively quick read. I'm not sure what I would have thought about it as a child, but I found it unsatisfying as an adult. The idea is that the dolls are supposed to be mean because the little girl plays with them in mean ways, but her meansness is only explained in a few paragraphs and just didn't come across effectively. *Spoiler* While the miniature hous ...more
Kristen
Nov 05, 2008 Kristen rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Kristen by: Emma
I read this aloud to my daughter when she was sick. She loved it. I thought it was OK. The basic story is about a girl receiving an antique dollhouse for her birthday when she really wanted a bike. She reacts with a bad attitude and ingratitude, and though she plays with the dollhouse, she makes the dolls be mean to each other. Her family life also spins out of control. Is there a connection? One day she wakes up to find herself IN the dollhouse and at the dolls' mercy. What will happen? I won't ...more
Gabby
A dark awakening . . .
When her parents give her a gloomy old dollhouse for her birthday instead of the ten speed bike she’s expecting, Vicky is disappointed. But she soon becomes fascinated by the small shadowy world and its inhabitants. The hours she spends playing with the dolls is a good way to escape from her parents’s arguments. As Vicky’s life becomes more troubled, she starts to take out her frustration on the dolls, making their lives as unhappy as hers.
Then one day, Vicky wakes up insid
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oplkids
This book is scary! Vicky's parents bought her an antique dollhouse for her birthday. It's very creepy and Vicky doesn't like it, but it has some kind of pull over her and she can't resist playing with it. She doesn't treat the dolls well - she makes them argue with each other and leaves them in uncomfortable positions when she's done. One day Vicky is playing with the dollhouse when she feels dizzy & closes her eyes. When she opens her eyes, she's inside the dollhouse with the dolls who are ...more
Mary
A fun twist when she wakes up in the dollhouse and finds the dolls are angry at how she treated them.
Jamey
Super fast intense read!
I really enjoyed reading this book.
M.
I like Sleator a lot, but this is clearly a lesser work for him. Or maybe it's just aimed at an even younger audience than his work normally is (which would explain why it's half the length of one of his normal books & pretty trite in its exploration). Should I be judging a young adult book by the same standards I judge every book? Who knows.

The idea here is interesting, and there's the nice dark twist too, as in all of Sleator's work that I've encountered thus far, but it's not developed, t
...more
Jeanne Phan
It was a nice interesting book with much suspense.
Mas5thgrade2014
people who have dolls do what ever they want with them but wouldint you ever want to know if they have fellings well they DO...See in this book there s a girl her name is vickey her birthday was comeing up and she wanted a bike but instead she got a doll house. the doll house was very old and dirty when Vicky started to play with it weird things started to happen for example her parents where having huge fights with her for no resone but the most weird part was when Vicky disapperd and she woke ...more
Jessica
Amazing book! I love love love loved it. If your looking for a creppy/scary/ nightmare book... < THIS IS IT!!! :D you will get nightmares about this book and it will have you paranoied! (Excuse my miss spelling) I recomend this book for age 11+.... A book that you should absoulutly read... I think im going to read it sometime this week since i read it ages ago. I will keep you guys updated on how the book goes and from what i remeber. Amazing book. Like i said ages 11+ Please you should read ...more
Debbie
May 28, 2008 Debbie rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: younger horror fans
Vicky keeps dropping not-so-subtle hints that what she'd really like for her birthday is a new bike. When they get her an antique dollhouse instead, she can't hide her disappointment. At first, she avoids the gloomy, dusty dollhouse. Then, gradually, she starts to play with it.

As her parents fight more and more, Vicky takes out her anger on the dolls. When Vicky suddenly finds herself a prisoner inside the dollhouse, she realizes that there is no way out--and she is at the mercy of the dolls.

Cr
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Katie
This book kept me up until 10:00 p.m to make sure the dolls in my room didn't turn me into a doll, but for that reason I was oddly attracted to finishing the book. When a young girl discovers that her parents gave her an old doll house, she realizes that something is wrong with it from the start, until one night she mysteriously was changed into the dolls. If you would want a mysterious, thrilling book, I totally recommend this book.
Annette
Only about 70 pages to it, but actually a pretty good read. Creepy and thought-provoking.

A young girl, Vicky gets a dollhouse for her birthday that she didn't really want. She ignored it until relationships in her house started to fall apart. Vicky began taking it out on the dolls in her dollhouse, acting out the drama in her own house. Until one day she found herself inside the dollhouse and was now a victim of her own making.
Teena
I borrowed this book from the library when I was a kid and it creeped me out SO badly! I remember being so kind and careful with my own dollhouse dolls after reading it, and being glad my dollhouse didn't have an attic. Years and years later, I finally found this book again, and while as an adult I now realize that it's not terribly well-written, it's still very creepy with a genuine sense of danger, especially near the end.
iamtedae
Mar 24, 2007 iamtedae rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: young fans of supernatural fiction
* Young Adult: Supernatural event. Girl is pulled into the life of dollhouse dolls to experience how her treatment of them affects them and her own family. Realistic family dynamic.
* Interesting/enjoyable, but too simple to read for pleasure as an adult. Would recommend for young reader looking for a "thrill" read.
* The edition I read was illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman, one of my favorite childrens' book artists.
Anne
Surprisingly thrilling and engaging, considering its length and genre. It entices the adult reader to explore the principles of Skinner which are alluded to in this children's chapter book.
Angie Valdez
This book was spooky. Not spooky enough to give you chills or nightmares but spooky enough to make you cringe I guess. This book is honestly one of the most unrealistic books I've ever read. The book is very intriguing though, it leaves wanting to read more. This book was very short though, its a quick book. Its very easy too, doesnt involve anything too complex.
Heidi
The evil side of Toy Story. This one scared me when I read it. Actually, the few pictures that were in it were the scariest part. I'll confess that I still think my toys have feelings. That either means I'm tenderhearted or crazy. I tend to lean towards the latter, and I do believe that this book may have played a huge factor in that.
Gena
Creeeepy! Watch how you treat your dolls ladies & gents! They could LITERALLY come back to haunt ya!

Though this is a book aimed at middle schooler or younger, I would hesitate to let a very young reader have it. This is the kind of story that's bound to stick with a kid, not something I'd want to be responsible for!
Clover Donovan
this book scared me a bit lol
a young girl buys an old dollhouse at a thrift store, takes it home and wakes up IN THE DOLLHOUSE. OMFG. It was a quick read being 96 pages but it was suspenseful and awesome. If you love books about scary dolls, pick this up NOW!.

- R.D.
Shawna
I found this book discounted to $.50 at a Thrifty store. I read it out loud to my husband on the way to a camping trip. We both enjoyed this creepy little story. I collect dolls so it was really a good read for me.
Kaitlin Minster
I thought it was a good book and was awesome when Vicky found out about the tiny dollhouse in the dollhouse. I thought Dandaroo was so loyal and cute. I am glad she kept him for herself for the rest of her life. :-)
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William Warner Sleator III was born in Havre de Grace, Maryland on February 13, 1945, and moved to St. Louis, MO when he was three. He graduated from University City High School in 1963, from Harvard in 1967 with BAs in music and English.

For more than thirty years, William Sleator thrilled readers with his inventive books. His House of Stairs was named one of the best novels of the twentieth cent
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More about William Sleator...
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