Review Blog

Feb 12 2018

Dolls of war by Shirley Parenteau

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Walker Books, 2018. ISBN 9780763690694
(Age: Year 5+) Recommended. "In 1941, eleven-year-old Macy James lives near the Oregon coast with her father, the director of a small museum. Miss Tokyo, one of fifty-eight exquisite friendship dolls given to America by Japan in 1926, is part of the museum's collection - and one of Macy's most treasured connections to her mother, who recently passed away. When the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor, many of Macy's neighbours demand that Miss Tokyo be destroyed. When her brother joins the Navy and devastating news from the war begins to pour in, Macy starts having doubts - does remaining loyal to Miss Tokyo mean being disloyal to America? " (Publisher)
Author Shirley Parenteau has done a magnificent job of bringing to life this real life little known story. She provides an interesting insight into the hatred to the enemy held by many Americans. It is a well written historical fiction book where the young girl, Macy, is torn between the loyalty to her mum and the beautiful Miss Tokyo and the patriotism for her country. The doll is a constant reminder of her recently lost mother. The local people in the town see her as a Japanese symbol that should be destroyed. We see a good friend of Macy's sent to an interment camp - something which Macy struggles to deal with.
This is a well written book that is descriptive and would make an excellent read aloud for Years 5 and up. For fans of historical fiction this is a must read and will no doubt spark an interest in the reader to investigate the facts more.
Kathryn Schumacher

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