cover image Trouble Dolls

Trouble Dolls

Jimmy Buffett. Harcourt Children's Books, $16 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-15-290790-7

In this unusually long story geared to the older picture book reader, Lizzy Rhinehart discovers that her father, a noted environmentalist, has been lost in the Florida Everglades. Having only her housekeeper and her dog to rely on, Lizzy is distraught--until she remembers the ``trouble dolls'' her father bought her in Guatemala. Legend has it that if you tell the dolls your troubles before going to sleep, they will find a solution. Lifting up her pillow, Lizzy takes comfort at the sight of a tiny village full of trouble dolls busily working on all sorts of problems. The next day, with the dolls perched on her visor, Lizzy and her dog take off to find her father. This emotionally charged story is a welcome blend of myth and reality, set in modern times but connected by folklore to the world of animals and magic. Davis's atmospheric illustrations glow with the warm colors of the tropics and the same flavor as these collaborators' The Jolly Mon. Ages 6-up. (Apr.)