Book Review: The Dollmaker of Krakow by R.M. Romero

Today I have a new book review for the beautiful and compelling story The Dollmaker of Krakow by R.M. Romero. A timeless fantasy set in the Second World War that weaves together magic, folklore and history, perfect for fans of The Book Thief, The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and Goodnight Mister Tom.

Title: The Dollmaker of Krakow
Author: R.M. Romero
Published: October 5th 2017 by Walker Books

Blurb: In the land of dolls, there is magic.

In the land of humans, there is war.
Everywhere there is pain.
But together there is hope.

Karolina is a living doll whose king and queen have been overthrown. But when a strange wind spirits her away from the Land of the Dolls, she finds herself in Krakow, Poland, in the company of the Dollmaker, a man with an unusual power and a marked past. 

The Dollmaker has learned to keep to himself, but Karolina's courageous and compassionate manner lead him to smile and to even befriend a violin-playing father and his daughter--that is, once the Dollmaker gets over the shock of realizing a doll is speaking to him. 

But their newfound happiness is dashed when Nazi soldiers descend upon Poland. Karolina and the Dollmaker quickly realize that their Jewish friends are in grave danger, and they are determined to help save them, no matter what the risks.

Review: The story between these pages is as beautiful and complex as its cover and illustrations. A real treat for both young readers and adults.

The Dollmaker of Krakow is a solitary man. One day though, one of his dolls comes to life and quickly becomes a key part of his life. Together they hope for a better life for them and also for their new Jewish friends. But Poland is in a very delicate situation, Nazi soldiers have just arrived to take control of the cities and things are about to change... 

World War II is a chapter in our history that we, as adults, know pretty well. But thanks to numerous magical elements and well developed and interesting characters, this novel broke my heart all over again. I kept wishing that somehow, it would end differently for them. And I am sure that many young readers will learn a lot with this book, as I did when I first read Anne Frank's story all those years ago.

This reads like a classic fairytale, not the happy-ever-after Disney stories but the darker ones, that teach you that life is not fair and good not always wins. The more fantastic elements intertwine really well with the historical storyline and it's easy to get lost in its pages and forget about everything else. 

The beautiful illustrations really add something else to the story and help create the perfect atmosphere for such a special story. 

Definitely a story that will touch many hearts.

Rating: 4.5 stars

I would like to thank the publishers for sending me a copy of this book. This is my honest opinion.

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