Lucie Babbidge's House

Sylvia Cassedy, Author T.Y. Crowell Junior Books $14 (242p) ISBN 978-0-690-04796-7
Those who venture with Cassedy into her imagination's powerful realms, making no assumptions and only following the currents, will find this an edifying and curiously exhilarating journey. Lucie Babbidge is the class duffer, the butt of ruthless jokes from her sneering schoolmates, who call her ``Goosey Loosey.'' But at home she is loved by her brother Emmett, by Mumma and Dada, by Olive the maid. The story alternates between the everyday cruelty of school life and what appears to be Lucie's home life. It becomes shockingly apparent, however, that Lucie is living in a vivid fantasy focused on a damaged doll's house she has found in a dark storeroom of Norwood Hall, where she is a charity pupil. As part of a letter-writing assignment, Lucie sends her correspondence to an address in England that was scratched on the back of the doll's house--and the several letters she receives in response tell of events mirroring those occurring in Lucie's world. The reader is so accustomed to Lucie's almost masochistic stance of victim that when she answers her teacher's order, ``And pick your head up'' with ``How can I, when it never fell off in the first place?'', not only is the whole class astounded, but the reader wants to cheer, and is content to leave Lucie there, knowing she will be all right now. Ages 9-12. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1989
Release date: 01/01/1989
Paperback - 242 pages - 978-0-380-71812-2
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