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Toys Come Home


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About the Author

Emily Jenkins has written many highly acclaimed books for children, including the popular award-winning chapter books Toys Go Out, Toy Dance Party, and Toys Come Home, as well as a picture book that features the same beloved characters, Toys Meet Snow, which was named a New York Times Notable Book and a Wall Street Journal Best Children's Book of the Year. She is also the author of A Fine Dessert, a New York Times Best Illustrated Book of the Year; Water in the Park, a Booklist Editors' Choice and a Bulletin Blue Ribbon Book; and Lemonade in Winter, a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. Visit her at

Paul O. Zelinsky is the illustrator of Dust Devil, a New York Times Notable Book and an Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award winner. He received the Caldecott Medal for his retelling of the classic fairy tale Rapunzel, as well as three Caldecott Honors, for Hansel and Gretel, Rumpelstiltskin, and Swamp Angel. His illustrations for Toy Dance Party were called "superlative" in a starred review by Kirkus Reviews. He lives in Brooklyn, New York. Learn more at


Praise for the Toys trilogy:

"This charming book makes ideal bedtime reading." --The Wall Street Journal "A sure hit for reading aloud and a classic in the making." --The San Francisco Chronicle

"Jenkins deftly penetrates the natural anxieties of childhood--the phobias, the insecurities, the self-doubts--without playing them down." --The New York Times Book Review "Has the nostalgic feel of a children's book from an earlier time--part Winnie the Pooh, part Hitty and part bedtime book. A perfect selection for family read-alouds." --Bookpage "A blend of Toy Story and the stories of Jonny Gruelle and A.A. Milne. Young readers will enjoy exploring the warm, secret world of toys." --Kirkus Reviews "There's a heavy fragrance of A.A. Milne to the narrative, not just in concept but in style and in details such as Plastic's fondness for Pooh-like "hums," but the book has a cuddly sturdiness all its own." --The Bulletin

"A timeless story of adventure and friendship to treasure aloud or independently. Wholly satisfying, this may well leave readers expecting to see the Velveteen Rabbit peeking in the bedroom window and smiling approvingly." --Booklist, Starred "An utterly delightful peek into the secret lives of toys. Here is a book bound to be a favorite with any child who has ever adored an inanimate object." --School Library Journal, Starred "You'll love Lumphy, and StingRay, and Plastic. You'll laugh over their choice of birthday presents and hold your breath over Plastic's encounter with the Possible Shark. Most of all, you'll never forget these three. I know I won't." --Patricia Reilly Giff, two-time Newbery Honor-winning author

Gr 1-3-In this follow-up to Toys Go Out (2006) and Toy Dance Party (2008, both Random), readers discover how the toys came to live with the Girl. StingRay arrives as a birthday gift and soon after meets Bobby Dot, a disagreeable stuffed walrus that makes her feel unwelcome. When the Girl becomes ill and vomits on him, Bobby Dot is thoroughly disgusted while StingRay feels it would be an honor to be "puked on" by the Girl. (The author devotes a whole chapter to this episode titled, "You Can Puke on Me.") An attempt to channel a common childhood anxiety about the dark through the toys may have adults answering some questions. StingRay loses her way in the dark (basement) and hears a scary rumbling noise (the clothes dryer); she imagines ghosts that "eat marine animals" or take them and make them slaves or an "axe murderer" who jumps around chopping things. The demise of the unpleasant Bobby Dot (he is accidently shredded in the dryer after the vomit incident) is taken in stride by most of the toys in the Girl's room, but StingRay is thoughtful about how quickly a life can be over. How Sheep came to lose her ear and the arrival of Lumphy and Plastic are also addressed in this story that shines with a message about the value of friendship.-D. Maria LaRocco, Cuyahoga Public Library, Strongsville, OH (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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