Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Dare Wright

I came across a copy of The Lonely Doll by Dare Wright at the recycling center.

Wright created an entire world and narrative around her doll, who is befriended by two stuffed bears. The story of Edith, who “lived in a nice house and had everything she needed except somebody to play with” echoes Wright’s own isolated childhood.

I ended up checking out all the Dare Wright books my library had. 

The Lonely Doll series; 

The Lonely Doll
A Gift From the Lonely Doll
Edith and Mr. Bear
Edith and Midnight
Edith and Little Bear Lend a Hand
Edith and the Duckling
The Lonely Doll Learns a Lesson
The Doll and the Kitten
Holiday for Edith and the Bears
Edith and Big Bad Bill

These were apparently very controversial, and much speculation has been made about the mental state of Dare Wright.

Mostly due to these kinds of photos.

But I love these books.

This has to be my favorite shot, thus far.

Want to own these books? Good luck, they are astronomically high-priced on sites such as eBay.

The doll and the bears? Even more so. 

The doll is a felt Lenci Doll from the 1920s which belonged to Dare as a child. She sewed Edith's outfits for the books and changed her eye color to blue, resembling the author's looks.

Mr. Bear was manufactured by Schuco, and Little Bear was a special edition Steiff "Jackie Bear." Both were purchased in the 1950s with the help of Dare's brother, Blaine Wright.

A new felt finished rendition of the Edith doll was manufactured in 2005 by the Alexander Doll Company, who made the first Edith doll in 1958. It was sold exclusively by The Toy Shoppe.

In 2007, R. John Wright produced a limited edition felt Edith doll for collectors to celebrate the 50th anniversary of "The Lonely Doll." This was the first Edith doll to be made in her actual 22" height.


  1. Actually the books weren't at all controversial when they came out. No reviewer took exception to Edith being spanked in "The Lonely Doll"--it was what happened to naughty children in the Fifties.

  2. I keep reading they were well-received by the children and not so much by the parents.

    I cannot say I have read any original reviews of the series, as I am a child of the 80's.

    I loved them. I am glad I found my copy and was introduced to Dare's world. I have now, thanks to the library, read the whole series.

  3. I don't know where you're reading that, because parents bought the books and put "The Lonely Doll" and "Holiday For Edith and The Bears" on the NY Times Best Seller List.

    Dare's world is a marvelous place. Welcome to it!