Sunday, September 27, 2015

The Marvels

Volume Eight in the Books That Matter Series

Brian Selznick has done it again. I first heard of his new novel, The Marvels, when I had a chance to preview an advanced copy of it in May. However, I was only able to look at the opening pictures. Then, a few months later, I had the chance to hear Brian Selznick speak about his book. It was a wonderful experience. And I can say, the book, The Marvels, lives up to its name. From the gorgeous book design to the detailed pictures and the touching story that unfolds, The Marvels is certainly a book that matters.

The book opens with a series of pictures that start in 1766. When the text begins, it opens with Joseph who is looking for his uncle in 1990. The story offered mystery and intrigue as I tried to figure out how the pictures in the beginning of the book were going to connect to Joseph and his uncle. The connection far exceeded my expectations. And even though Joseph's story takes place twenty five years ago in a house that seems to live in the past, it still seems current and important for children to read today. Joseph's uncle is battling more than what meets the eye. And as the story often says: "You either see it or you don't."

Like its predecessors, The Invention of Hugo Cabret and Wonderstruck, The Marvels also shows the importance of family and home. It speaks to life and legacy and the impact people can have on another. It touches on the importance of stories and how they relate to truth.

So if you check out The Marvels, also be sure to read the afterword about the actual people and places that inspired the book.

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