By Vickie Britton & Loretta Jackson
Authors’ Website: https://sites.google.com/site/vickiebrittonandlorettajackson/
Brought to you by OBS reviewer Caro
Cassie humors her fragile sister, Mia, who is recovering from a nervous breakdown, by purchasing two Harlequin dolls at a local antique store. The two dolls, one light-haired and the other dark, are a matching pair—like sisters!
Sibling rivalries from childhood begin to surface, as well as jealousy over Jason, who has married Mia, but was once Cassie’s boyfriend. Cassie soon fears for her life when she receives a disturbing phone call in the eerie voice of Mrs. Jingles, her sister’s doll. Is the toy bent on revenge for a sister scorned, or is Cassie about to encounter something even more sinister in the form of someone she’s loved for years?
As a child I was never fond of porcelain dolls. I would hear scary stories about them from my grandmothers and older aunts, so I avoided them. There is something about the way they look at you, that makes you turn away. I even remember that there was an episode about a doll house in Are you Afraid of the Dark 🙂 Can anyone recall it?
But can rag dolls have the same effect? I did have two as a child. I still do. One is named, Molly.
Once I read the first page and the dolls were mentioned, I knew this was a good short story. It brought back all those childhood memories, and I just couldn’t stop reading it. I felt connected to poor Cassie in the sense that I’m, too, an older sister and in several occasions had to give up something for my siblings. Not to mention, that for my sisters third birthday she received an incredible amount of dolls that could compare to Mia’s collection. Oh, the fear at night!
I really liked how the story unfolded and as it developed, it gives the reader information of the characters’ background to keep the story going. Just like it shows, as you read, how the sisters try to maintain their bond strong to keep their relationship steady and help the one need until the end, even if it means to sacrifice itself. The authors, being sisters themselves, had a good way of portraying the feelings between older and younger sisters, that readers can relate to. I won’t deny that I’ve had that same thought, like Cassie, of Ami feeling guilty, too.
This is definitely something to share in your reading groups or among friends, waiting for Halloween. It’s easy to read and keep track of. I was half way and had to leave it for a moment, all the time thinking what would happen next, expecting those dolls to come up with something.
The authors of Mrs. Jingles, definitely brought back that feeling, through a short story, of old school scary stories that as kids we loved to hear at night with friends and then look around us to check if no one is staring.