So I felt brave enough to tackle this immense book. It has been a slow beginning, but I am persevering on. I loved this little observation I came across:
A doll is among the most pressing needs as well as the most charming instincts of feminine childhood. To care for it, adorn it, dress and undress it, give it lessons, scold it a little, put it to bed and sing it to sleep, pretend that the object is a living person--all the future of the woman resides in this. Dreaming and murmuring, tendling, cossetting, sewing small garments, the child grows into girlhood, from girlhood into womanhood, from womanhood into wifehood, and the first baby is the successor of the last doll. A little girl without a doll is nearly as deprived and quite as unnatural as a woman without a child. So Cosette made her sword into a doll.