Friday, October 14, 2011
I don't know whether it was the beautiful city skyline, the stunning blue of the sky, the mystery of the lightning bolt, the majestic font of the title, or just that it was written by Brian Selznick, but something about the book grabbed me from the second I saw it.
Or maybe I'm psychic and I could just tell the book would be really good.
Okay, or maybe it was because I've read The Invention of Hugo Cabret (also by Brian Selznick), and I figured that this book would be just as awesome.
Wonderstruck is two stories, one told in pictures and one told in words. Ben's story is told in words. He lives in 1977 Minnesota and his mom has just died. He never met his dad, so he's living with his Aunt and Uncle. Rose's story is told in pictures. She lives in 1927 New Jersey and is an artist. She is faithfully keeping a scrapbook of all of the newspaper/magazine articles about the actress Lillian Mayhew. I won't say any more because I don't want to spoil anything.
Brian Selznick did an amazing job with this book. The detail in each and every picture was absolutely stunning. The drawings are in black and white and are done by Selznick himself. The New York Times put it best, "it's like a silent film on paper." (in a review of The Invention of Hugo Cabret, which is written in the same words-pictures style). Here's just a taste of Selzick's style:
Not only are the drawings detailed, so is the writing. Brian Selznick is quite a descriptive writer, so everything he doesn't provide a drawing for, he describes beautifully.
Wonderstruck is a good book for anyone ages 2 to 92, for fans of any genre, for devoted readers and people who rarely pick up a book, for artists and writers, etc. It's a extraordinary book that has a very good chance of winning a Newberry Medal this year, and will be a great read for anybody and everybody.
Peace, Love, and Beautiful Drawings