Study Guide

Doll Bones Chapter 9

By Holly Black

Chapter 9

  • Zach wakes Alice; he wants to know if she believes in ghosts.
  • He does, but Alice isn't so sure. She thinks their stash was probably destroyed raccoons… or Poppy.
  • Even though Zach is scared, part of him wants to believe that ghosts are real. Even scary magic is better than no magic at all.
  • So Zach thinks the vandal was Eleanor. Alice is still betting on raccoons or Poppy, though; she thinks Poppy faked the whole story, including the bag of ashes.
  • Zach thinks about telling Alice about his dream, but he doesn't. He realizes he might have just had the dream because they were talking about Eleanor.
  • Alice is poking around in Zach's backpack, looking for food, but instead she finds a folded up note. Remember those Questions Zach lied about earlier? It's those.
  • Zach is embarrassed, but he doesn't have time to explain because Poppy wakes up. Alice stuffs the Questions in her pocket.
  • Guess what? Turns out Poppy has been dreaming about Eleanor, too. Weird.
  • Poppy surveys their vandalized camp. She's not sure that it was Eleanor, though. What if it was Tinshoe Jones?
  • Zach doesn't think it was Tinshoe Jones; he's certain it was a ghost.
  • The gang decides to go to the donut shop they passed the night before. They're all really hungry, but they're on a tight budget if they want to be able to afford their bus tickets back.
  • The guy who runs the shop is like the Willy Wonka of donuts, offering up the usual flavors as well as a whole bunch of weird ones, including pickle juice, lobster, and wasabi.
  • The kids get a round of hot chocolate and donuts, and Poppy props the Queen on a chair before starting a totally normal conversation about dying and ghosts.
  • She also talks more about her Eleanor dream: In the dream, Eleanor's aunt was swatting at her with a broom. Ugh.
  • Zach still doesn't mention his own dream, though, because he feels confused about it.
  • The donut guy gives them a free donut, observing how their "blond friend" seems hungry. By which he means the Queen.
  • Alice insists the donut guy was joking… but didn't Tinshoe Jones say something similar? Zach glances over at the doll. Yep, she's still creepy.
  • Alice consults the map—Poppy thinks they should walk to East Liverpool, and Zach is up for it. Alice agrees on one condition: Everyone has to promise that they won't miss the 4:30 bus.
  • Poppy hems and haws, but ultimately agrees; they leave the donut shop.