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Daisy Dolls by Cao Wenxuan and Zhao Lei

Daisy Dolls is a beautiful and simple story of a doll maker named Hua. The picture book, written by Cao Wenxuan and published by Karadi Tales, comes to us from a little town in China. It has been translated to English, but the gorgeous illustrations by Zhao Lei evokes a quaint but charming rural China. 

Hua is a consummate doll maker, very dedicated to her craft. She works relentlessly to make dolls that make little children happy. Her dolls have their own special personality, and go on to make a big difference in the lives of their children. All her dolls have one thing in common- they have a little daisy stitched on to them, as a nod to Hua’s memories of her childhood. 

However, age catches up and when Hua grows old she makes her last doll and keeps her as her own. She treats her doll as her very own child. But, there is one more child who could do with Hua’s doll. Will Hua give it to her? What will this mean for Hua and for the child? 

There are many themes interwoven in this little story. It is a story that tells us of dedication to one’s craft, and perfection therein. It also holds the message of caring for others and making a difference to the lives of people around us. No matter how old or young, rich or poor we are, there is always a way to make a difference in the lives of others. 

The book also touches briefly, and fleetingly on the concept of death. It is woven quite naturally into the narrative just in the manner it should be- as a simple fact of life. 

This picture book is meaningful at many different levels. It will appeal to young children from age 3 onwards up to 6 years. It makes for great gifting as well! Daisy Dolls will be a pleasant read, over and over again!