The Ticky-Tacky Doll

Overview


The ticky-tacky doll has been one little girl's best friend ever since Grandmama sewed it for her. They do everything together--eat, sleep, play, even dream.
Then school starts, and for the first time the little girl has to leave her beloved companion behind at home. Without the ticky-tacky doll by her side, she grows more sad-eyed and lonely each day.
Luckily, Grandmama ...
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Overview


The ticky-tacky doll has been one little girl's best friend ever since Grandmama sewed it for her. They do everything together--eat, sleep, play, even dream.
Then school starts, and for the first time the little girl has to leave her beloved companion behind at home. Without the ticky-tacky doll by her side, she grows more sad-eyed and lonely each day.
Luckily, Grandmama knows just what to do. . . .

When she has to go to school without her special doll, a little girl cannot focus on learning her letters and numbers, until her grandmother realizes what the problem is.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Rylant (the Little Whistle series) wisely explores a child's separation anxiety through her relationship with her doll. The author conveys the girl's bond with the doll, handmade for her by Grandmama ("It was ticky, her mother said, because Grandmama had made it from sewing scraps. And it was tacky because pieces of cloth hung from it like soft bits of hair"), through the rhythms of their day, their trips to town, a shared meal ("At the supper table the doll fit snugly on the little girl's lap, and its eyes could see what was for dinner"). Stevenson's (Bye, Mis' Lela) paintings cast a magic glow on the pair, inseparable in the opening spreads. He portrays the doll with a seam down the middle of her smiling face, X's for eyes and a mop of striped and polka-dotted fabric strips for hair. On the first day of school, when the girl must leave the doll at home, she withdraws completely: Stevenson shows her with head bowed at a table, markers and paper untouched. Only Grandmama knows what is wrong, and she comes up with an innovative solution. With the barest of statements, Rylant affirms the child's feelings and conveys the bond between child and grandparent ("Grandmama had lived a long time and knew about loneliness and missing someone," while the illustration shows a framed picture of her grandfather). Stevenson's artwork, with its layered, contrasting planes of blue and gold, resembles the loving patchwork of the doll itself. Ages 3-7. (Aug.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
PreS-A little girl worries about going to school for the first time and leaving her ticky-tacky doll that Grandmama made behind. The child is unable to eat or pay attention and her teachers and family are concerned. Only her observant grandmother is able to figure out what is wrong, and she devises the perfect solution: she sews a miniature version of the doll that fits into the corner of the little girl's book bag. The illustrations coordinate perfectly with the tale, and the muted colors reflect the youngster's sadness when she is without her companion. Similar to Kevin Henkes's Owen (Greenwillow, 1993), this story is likely to strike a chord with children who have beginning-school jitters.-Sheilah Kosco, Rapides Parish Library, Alexandria, LA Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A graceful tale about coping with the pangs of separation. A hand-sewn doll is a girl's constant companion, lovingly carted to and from every activity. Yet when the time for school arrives, the girl makes the distressing discovery that her beloved friend must stay home. With humbly eloquent prose, Rylant (The Storm, above, etc.) describes the abiding bonds between a young child and her favored doll. "Well, the little girl might as well have been asked to leave her nose behind, or her two ears. . . . The ticky-tacky doll was much a part of her as eyes or ears or a nose, and the little girl did not know how else to be." When the girl fails to thrive at school, too distracted by her loss and longing, the adults in her life are baffled. All except for her grandmother, who, with consummate understanding about the pain of separation from loved ones, is able to ease the girl's heartache with a surprisingly simple solution. A teeny-tiny version of the doll tucked into her school bag enables the child to confidently attend school, secure in the knowledge that a little bit of love from home is with her. Stevenson's (Shadows, p. 189, etc.) acrylic and crayon illustrations resonate with the emotions of the tale. Rendered in a muted palette of gentle colors, the heavily textured illustrations are an elegant extension of Rylant's deeply moving story. A treasure to share with young ones who are approaching this momentous milestone. (Picture book. 3-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780152010782
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 8/28/2002
  • Series: Tacky the Penguin Series
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.08 (w) x 7.94 (h) x 0.09 (d)

Meet the Author


CYNTHIA RYLANT is the acclaimed author of more than eighty books for young people, including the Mr. Putter & Tabby and the Little Whistle series. Her novel Missing May received the Newbery Medal. She lives on an island in Puget Sound, Washington.

HARVEY STEVENSON is the illustrator of Bye, Mis' Lela and As the Crow Flies: A First Book of Maps, as well as many other picture books. He lives in Paris.

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