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Book Review: 'Doll Bones,' thrilling, chilling

2:22 PM, Sep. 4, 2013  |  Comments
Taylor Weinfurter
Taylor Weinfurter
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Zach, Poppy and Alice are three lifelong friends about to start middle school. Since childhood, they have played a continuous adventure game with dolls and action figures. At the center of this ongoing quest is the game's protagonist: The Queen, a bone china doll with blond curls and fluttering eyes.

When Zach's dad decides Zach is too old for toys, he throws away all of Zach's favorite action figures and characters for the adventure game. Devastated, Zach decides he should tell Poppy and Alice he no longer wants to play the game instead of telling them the truth. Zach tells the girls he doesn't want to play anymore, but Poppy insists that they go on one final quest.

Poppy reveals to her friends that she has been having dreams about The Queen. Poppy insists that The Queen is made out of a dead girl's bones, hair and ashes. The Queen, also known as Eleanor, is haunting Poppy and will not stop until she is returned to her empty grave, located a few hundred miles away in Ohio. Is Poppy making up this story to keep her friends playing the game?

Zach and Alice decide to embark on one final journey with Poppy, despite their doubts in Poppy's story. On their way to Ohio, the group finds many eerie and peculiar things happening to them. People refer to their trio as a group of four, not three. People are seeing The Queen as another kid in their group, not a doll. They also wake up to their campsite trashed and The Queen located in a different area.

Soon enough, Zach is having dreams about Eleanor, just like Poppy. Will The Queen keep haunting and wreaking havoc on the kids? Or will Zach, Alice and Poppy return The Queen to her rightful grave in Ohio, and finally lay Eleanor's ghost to rest?

This book is adventurous and thrilling, yet not too scary for a typical ghost story. Eliza Wheeler provides whimsical, yet creepy illustrations throughout the book that add another element of spookiness to the tale. Recommended for tweens, teens and adults who enjoy a good ghost story.

Taylor Weinfurter is a library assistant at the Marathon County Public Library in Wausau.

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