Thursday, December 17, 2020

Night of the Living Dolls (Haunted #3)

Sutherland, Joel A. Night of the Living Dolls (Haunted #3)
1 September 2020, Sourcebooks
Library copy

Zelda has a doll that her friends find creepy, Sadie Sees, but she is fond of the doll because her grandmother gave it to her, and tries to tell her friends that she keeps the doll around because it comforts her younger sister, Lucy. When her grandmother dies suddenly, the family stays in her house to sort things out. While in the attic, Zelda finds a trunk full of assorted dolls, as well as her grandmother's journal from the 1950s. When the grandmother was young, she was a student in a prestigious boarding school, but only because her father was the caretaker. She was not liked by the other girls in the school, and in retribution, snuck in to steal their dolls-- and accidentally caused a fire that killed them, as well as the headmistress. The spirits of the people killed transferred into the dolls, and now that Zelda has freed them, they are bent on the destruction of the grandmother's progeny. Will Zelda and Lucy be able to find information about the past to put the dolls at peace and stop their evil rampage?
Strengths: There were several levels of creepy going on with this; the possessed dolls being in the grandmother's house, Sadie Sees talking to the girls and wanting to possess them, and the grandmother's role in the fire and deaths. My students love stories about haunted schools or institutions like Alender's The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall or Dan Poblocki's The Ghost of Graylock. I enjoyed the extra levels of evil in this, with the dolls being possessed, and the grandmother's possible involvement in the whole ugly scenario. What a thing to find out when your grandmother has just passed away! That's the real horror, to me. 
Weaknesses: The Wisp from Ghosts Never Die did get mentioned in this, but didn't intrigue me as much as it should have. 
What I really think: Purchased two of this series without reading them; that's how much I enjoyed the other two and knew that my students would like them even more than I did!
Ms. Yingling

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