Saturday, February 4, 2012

Do women ever stop loving their dolls?

by Lorna Barrett / Lorraine Bartlett / L.L. Bartlett

I mean it? Do women ever stop loving their dolls? I don't think I did.  But then I don't have children.  (I have cats.  And don't tell me that's easier -- ha!  They fight like ... well, like little kids.  "He's looking at me, Ma!!!!")

That's not to say that girls don't like other toys.  I can remember many happy hours spent playing with tinker toys, my brother's erector set, Lincoln Logs, the Playdoh extruder (and the Fun Factory!), model gas station (with a deluxe elevator to move the cars to the roof for extra parking), Legos, and one of the best boy toys ever, the Kenner Building set.  (Man, I loved that.  Green girders and plastic window panels. how 1960s was that!)

But then there were my dolls. I had a few of the greats.  Thumbelina, Tiny Tears (with the rockabye eyes).  I loved (and still have) my Barbies (and her friends and assorted relatives).  And BTW, my Barbie flew in G.I. Joe's space capsule long before Mattel ever thought of putting her in space).

My protagonist, Katie Bonner of the Victoria Square Mysteries, had an opportunity to think about dolls in my latest release, THE WALLED FLOWER.  One of her vendors is selling handcrafted dolls and misrepresenting their pedigree.  That causes Katie to buy a box lot of assorted dolls at an auction she attends.  She figures she'll rehab the ailing dolls (such as amputee Raggedy Ann), and sell them.  But . . . will that really happen?  Will Katie be able to part with her new-found dolly friends AND solve a murder that's over two decades old?

I hope you'll be intrigued enough to find out by reading THE WALLED FLOWER.  It'll be "officially" available on Tuesday (but I've heard rumors that some people have already found copies on the shelves)  in bookstores and online.