by Holly Black
Creepy tale for 5th grade boys and girls and older.
Zach, Poppy, and Alice have been playing a make-believe game that involves action figures, dolls, and their imaginations for years. As they head into their teen years, Zach is feeling the pressure to give up the game.
But the game is just getting interesting thanks to the Great Queen – a bone china doll that Poppy’s mom keeps locked in a glass cabinet.
When Zach’s father forces the issue (he thinks his son should focus on basketball, not baby games), Zach quits the game without telling his friends why.
But maybe it doesn’t have to end. When Poppy, the storyteller, says she is having dreams involving the Queen and a dead girl, the three take off on adventure like their make-believe.
Story is eerie scary, not threatening scary (one incident involving a homeless man is menacing), but most of the chills come from not being sure which is real and which is the product of the imagination.
Good for 5th grade on up. The story involves a doll, but boys will like this one too. Especially if they liked Goosebumps.