Kristen's Reviews > The Friendship Doll

The Friendship Doll by Kirby Larson
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's review
Aug 13, 11

bookshelves: childrens, from-the-publisher
Recommended to Kristen by: Amazon Vine
Read from July 24 to August 03, 2011

In 1927, 58 handcrafted, oversized dolls left Japan and sailed to the United States, gifts of schoolchildren to be ambassadors of goodwill and friendship. Kirby Larson's sweet novel imagines the journeys of one of those dolls, Miss Kanagawa, from the hands of her maker to her encounters with girls around the country.

Each story has a great deal of personality and life. The same could be said for Miss Kanagawa, who is anthropomorphized into a sassy and loveably character. Readers trace her visits from New York to Chicago, the hollers of Kentucky to rural Oregon. As they are exposed to people of different classes and places with relatable struggles and difficulties. The Great Depression is well treated by the many glimpses into different situations (as opposed to a single narrative.)

The writing was clear and lovely, certainly not writing down to the audience, and I think children (particularly girls) will like it a great deal. As a person who appreciates both creative license and precision, I loved the author's notes at the end that detail what was known about each part of the story, and the friendship dolls' journeys around the United States. Between its literary and historic merits, The Friendship Doll is sure to be a contender for many of this years prestigious awards.

{i received a reading copy of this book to review but my opinions are my own.}

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