Behind the Attic Wall

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Behind the Attic Wall is a children's novel by Sylvia Cassedy, first published in 1983.

Synopsis[edit]

At twelve, Maggie has already been thrown out of numerous foster homes and boarding schools for lying, stealing, and disobedience. At last she comes to Adelphi Hills--itself a former boarding school--to live with her only living relatives: Great-Aunts Lillian and Harriet and her eccentric, but kind, Uncle Morris. Accustomed to being neglected and unloved, and believing herself to be unlovable, Maggie bides her time until the inevitable moment when her overstrict great-aunts tire of her trouble-making and send her away.

But behind the wall of Adelphi Hill's disused attic, Maggie hears voices calling to her. There she discovers a pair of ancient china dolls who walk, talk, and--most importantly--need her to be their caretaker. At first reluctant, Maggie soon flourishes under the dolls' unconditional love and finds in herself, for the first time, the ability to love in return.

While Maggie slowly grows to accept the dolls' love, she is puzzled by their mysterious existence. Her curiosity leads to a shocking discovery about their true nature, followed by a terrible loss that leaves Maggie shaken, haunted, but emotionally strong enough to leave Adelphi Hills and become part of a real family once more.