Orphan, clock keeper, and thief, Hugo lives in the walls of a busy Paris train station, where his
survival depends on secrets and anonymity. But when his world suddenly interlocks with an eccentric, bookish girl, and a bitter old man who runs a toy booth in the station, Hugo’s undercover life, and this most precious secret, are put in jeopardy. A cryptic drawing, a treasured notebook, a stolen key, a mechanical man, and a hidden message from Hugo’s dead father form the backbone of this intricate, tender, and spellbinding mystery.
Let me just start out by clarifying one thing: Brian Selznick is a genius.
If the first thought you have is, “Who is Brian Selznick?” then just- just leave.
No seriously, though, Brian Selznick is the most brilliant person to walk on the face of the earth.
Hugo Cabret is another of those books that I consider to be, more than just a book.
It is a masterpiece, a work of art, a soulful look into the depths of a human’s capacity for creativity.
One of the reasons I love this book so much is that I actually got to meet Brian Selznick during his release of his more recent book, The Marvels. He is witty, talented, funny, and overall just plain awesome. I am so impressed with his character and mindset while writing his books (drawing them too), and the process of how he got to get these totally insane ideas are interesting. The thing is for most authors, when someone asks them, “How on earth did you ever come up with such an idea?” They go, “It literally just came to me, and I built upon it.” That’s the truth with most books though, I am working on my own novels, and this is just the way fiction writing comes, about.
Of course it would be awesome to say, “Seven years and ninety eight point five days ago, I observed a tragic event two blocks away from my house that altered my conscious forever. I interviewed the other witnesses of this event, and found one person that had retrograde amnesia. From there I-“
No. Just no. Yes, there are some particular people out there that can stem their books back to specific moments, but most of the time, it’s just a fancy word or a pretty stranger that plants the seed for a novel idea.
One of the things that I personally found quite funny is when he said, I needed research and inspiration for The Marvels so I just moved to France, yeah no big deal.
Okay sorry. Back to Hugo Cabret. If you’re not familiar with Brian Selznick’s revolutionary word to art story telling, than it might be hard to grasp the concept. There were many ways this style could’ve failed- so many risks and loopholes, but he did it. And let me tell you, it worked.
Hugo Cabret is a book that would not have worked without the artwork that narrated along with the traditional writing. I am always on the lookout for unique, beautiful books . (<< please click to read Illuminae), and Hugo Cabret is as original as you can get.
Closing word: Brian Selznick is the fabtabulous and Hugo Cabret is a work of art.
Review by Annabel Lee
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