The Invention of Hugo Cabret, by Brian Selznick

The Invention of Hugo Cabret, by Brian Selznick

The Invention of Hugo CabretI am quite delighted with this book. I’m so glad that I picked it up from the library today on a whim. The Invention of Hugo Cabret was awarded the 2008 Caldecott Medal.

With a combination of black and white pen sketches and black and white printed words, this book is unlike any I’ve ever read. At 526 pages in a hardbound binding, it looks a little daunting. However, I read it carefully in less than an hour and a half. At least half of the pages are beautiful sketches, with a few black and white photographs thrown in. The presence of the pictures and the opening instructions to “picture yourself sitting in the darkness, like the beginning of a movie” set a magical tone to the book.

The story is (though I don’t like to use the term) heartwarming. Little Hugo Cabret has been orphaned and is living a precarious life as a clockkeeper in a train station. His father died trying to fix an old automaton, and Hugo has taken it upon himself to fix it. This quest leads him through a fantasical and yet very believable adventure that ends with him finding his true self. The writing itself is simple and rich. The combination of the pictures and the story is a beautiful work of art that defies proper description. I cant wait to see what Brian Selznick does next.

Everyone needs to read this book. Go on. Go read it.

The Invention of Hugo Cabret, by Brian Selznick [rating:5]

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Rebecca Reads