Wednesday 24 October 2012

Book Review - The Paper Dolls by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Rebecca Cobb

We were sent a copy of Paper Dolls to review - a new book by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Rebecca Cobb. I really don’t want to sound too gushing in my review, but I have to say that in my opinion this picture book is perfect.

The story follows a little girl with a mother that makes her a string of paper dolls - each named and unique. The paper dolls have some beautifully illustrated adventures as the little girl plays with them around the house and garden. The paper dolls encounter a variety of imaginary hazards, but they escape them all, singing that they are ‘holding hands and we won’t let go’.

In the end, however, they can’t escape the very real threat of a little boy and his scissors, and he cuts them up into tiny pieces. But they haven’t gone forever, and they float away into the little girl’s memory, along with all sorts of other lovely things, until she has a little girl of her own that she can make paper dolls with.

This story is different to others by Julia Donaldson in our collection. The book is a touching reminder of children growing up and the passage of time, and that can be very poignant as a parent reading to a young child. It also broaches the subject of loss, and I think it would be a good book to share with a child that has experienced bereavement or any other type of loss, as it builds upon the idea that nothing and no-one is gone forever, they will always live on in your memories.

The illustrations in the book are quite superb. I love the drawings of Rebecca Cobb. I recently reviewed Lunchtime, which Rebecca wrote and illustrated, and that has become one of our favourite books. Her drawings are so lifelike, and they inject so much personality into the story.

I would absolutely recommend this book. We’ve been reading it every night for several days now, and I’m enjoying it every time. It must surely be destined to become a children’s classic.

Book review - The Paper Dolls

I received a copy of the book to review


  1. It does sound lovely. Might add it to someone's Christmas list...

  2. I agree that this is a perfect picture book, such a lovely story, so well written and illustrated. I will be buying quite a few copies for presents this christmas.

  3. It really is a lovely book, I hope that it will be under many Christmas trees this year!


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