Mini Review: Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick

Written by: Brian Selznick
Release Date: September 13th 2011
Pages: 640, Hardback
Series: Standalone
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Ben and Rose secretly wish their lives were different. Ben longs for the father he has never known. Rose dreams of a mysterious actress whose life she chronicles in a scrapbook. When Ben discovers a puzzling clue in his mother’s room and Rose reads an enticing headline in the newspaper, both children set out alone on desperate quests to find what they are missing.

Set fifty years apart, these two independent stories–Ben’s told in words, Rose’s in pictures–weave back and forth with mesmerizing symmetry. How they unfold and ultimately intertwine will surprise you, challenge you, and leave you breathless with wonder. Rich, complex, affecting, and beautiful–with over 460 pages of original artwork–Wonderstruck is a stunning achievement from a uniquely gifted artist and visionary.


Wow, this book. Again we have a simple storyline like Hugo, but unlike Hugo instead of just having it be simple and running with it, it’s built upon. The storyline is far more in depth, the characters are shown much more than before. This time we get to really know the characters and who they are. Yes they still have defining characteristics for the plot of the book, but that’s not all they are anymore. Now the characters have more depth and understanding, as a reader you start to get to know them a whole lot more.

My favorite part of this book is that it deals with deafness in such an amazing way. It’s not something brought front and center ‘REMEMBER THIS PERSON IS DEAF’, but it’s also not swept under the carpet and forgotten about. Deafness is treated just like it is, something that people have to often overcome and deal with, but people deal with it, they don’t make a big deal out of it. So much so in fact that not long after I read this book a friend of mine was assigned to read it in her deaf culture class. At one point in this book Rose is suddenly upset to find out that movies are about to become ‘talkies’ suddenly something she could do with those who are hearing, is going to once again, be delegated to the hearing only, something else to separate Rose.

Ben’s storyline is told through the words of this novel, and as such his story is a little more in depth than Rose’s but his really hinge the story, you get to know him and see his struggles through a lot of different problems that I don’t wanna go too in depth with since that is where the story starts to grow and change. You start picking up hints of how these two are connected but it’s not until the end that you see it all come together and get this amazing reveal that just left me so happy.

Overall this book was an amazing read, again a really fast read, but a read that just left me so happy. The ending was good and weird at the same time, the book was left with the storyline concluded but where we go from this moment? Who knows. I’m not normally a fan of books like this but with Wonderstruck it worked so peacefully and left me feeling so content with what I’d been given.


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