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Babushka's Doll


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About the Author

Patricia Polacco belongs to a family of storytellers, poets, farmers, teachers, and artists. They came from many parts of the world, but mainly Russia. She grew up to be an illustrator, a designer, and creator of many beloved children's books, including The Keeping Quilt, The Blessing Cup, Fiona's Lace, The Trees of the Dancing Goats, Babushka's Doll, and My Rotten Redheaded Older Brother. She lives in Union City, Michigan. Visit her at and follow her on Facebook.


PreS-Gr 2‘Patricia Polacco's story (S&S, 1990) is a cautionary tale of a young, self-centered girl named Natasha, and her babushka (Grandmother). When Babushka's doll comes to life and gives Natasha a taste of her own medicine, she learns a valuable lesson about being considerate of others. The narrator, Barbara Caruso, finds a voice for each character and reads the story in clear, rich tones without the distraction of background music or sound effects. Both sides of the tape contain an identical reading. This gentle, refined treatment of a delightful book would be useful for listening centers.‘Teresa Bateman, Brigadoon Elementary School, Federal Way, WA

Little Natasha can't leave her Babushka--Russian grandmother--alone: while Babushka methodically attempts to finish her laundry and livestock-feeding, the impatient girl always has another, more urgent agenda. When Babushka goes out, she presents her granddaughter with her own doll from her childhood. Tasha discovers the meaning of peskiness when the doll comes to life and makes her jump through hoops, entertaining her every minute. By the time Babushka returns from her shopping expedition, Tasha is exhausted from her afternoon with a most demanding playmate. Polacco's ( Thunder Cake ; The Keeping Quilt ) pencil illustrations are vibrant with the addition of marker colors and paint, from the large-featured grandmother to the straggly-haired Tasha to the expressive collection of barnyard goats. Many overeager youngsters may well identify with this engaging, well - told tale. Ages 3-6. (Sept.)

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