cover image Sophie and Rose

Sophie and Rose

Kathryn Lasky. Candlewick Press (MA), $15.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-7636-0459-2

Sophie is overjoyed to discover Rose, a doll who has been in the family for two generations and is ""so old-fashioned that she seemed like a visitor from another time."" Sophie soon learns that Rose is fragile: when Sophie combs the doll's hair, a chunk falls out; a fall from a precarious perch chips Rose's nose; and when Sophie leaves her in the garden overnight, she loses an eye. Poor Rose is quite a sight by the book's end, but the doll's vulnerability endears her to Sophie all the more, and the two become inseparable: ""[Sophie] knows she will always love her Rose, who listens with her seashell ears... and who was so brave through the long garden night."" Moving but never sentimental, Lasky's (Marven of the Great North Woods) text proves the poetic power of simple, straightforward language, while Halperin's (Once Upon a Company) watercolors possess an old-fashioned quality with a muted palette and classic fabric and wallpaper patterns. The artist frequently breaks up the action into a series of freeze-frames that expand the action beyond the text (showing, for example, how Sophie inadvertently leaves Rose behind in the garden). An uplifting affirmation that beloved toys and imaginative play stand the test of time. Ages 4-8. (Oct.)