The Cats in the Doll Shop

by Yona Zeldis McDonough and Heather Maione

Anna can’t wait for her cousin Tania to arrive from Russia for an extended... read more

Anna can’t wait for her cousin Tania to arrive from Russia for an extended stay in their apartment above the family’s doll shop. Anna even makes a special schoolgirl doll as a gift to welcome Tania to America. But when Tania arrives, she hardly talks to Anna or her sisters and acts strangely, hiding food beneath her pillow. Meanwhile, all the girls are drawn into a drama involving a stray cat who has given birth to kittens on a nearby building’s balcony. The man who lives there cruelly sweeps the animals from their perch. Only one kitten and the mother survive. Anna’s father doesn’t believe in keeping cats inside a home, so he allows the girls to put food out for the mother, but not to bring her or the kitten inside. But Tania bonds with the cats in a way that she can’t with the people around her, and they become one of the ways she begins to adjust to her life in America, opening doors to relationships with people, too. This sequel to The Doll Shop Downstairs (Viking, 2009) continues the story of Anna, her sisters Sophie and Trudie, and their parents, living on the Lower East Side of New York City during World War I. (Ages 7–9)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2012

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