Book Reviews by Author

The Invention of Hugo Cabret

by Brian Selznick
  • Three stars
    Give it a try, if you have the time.
    The book “The Invention of Hugo Cabret” by Brian Selznick is an illustrated historical fiction novel based in Paris, France of the 20th century. This novel is centered around an orphaned boy who lives through the setting of a Parisian train station working as the station's clock keeper. The little boy's life was hard, with most of his life working and looking upon his most treasured items, his late fathers broken automaton and the notebook that contained information regarding the item. This novel is vastly different from the novels we often read as book reports in school or as projects, this book takes close reading and imagination as a key to understanding. Rather than regular novels where pictures are complementary to the passages, the illustrations within this novel are essential in understanding plot, emotion, and characters actions. Through this novel, we get a glimpse of a new kind of perspective, bringing significance into important real world lessons that we sometimes tend to neglect when we are so busy living to survive. Selznick uses the detailed illustrations and plot to bring out the creativity of dreams and the importance of putting effort and mind into our daily life and goals. Even though this is the case, while I was reading, I noticed that the characters were not as well developed and were often so over simplified. I think this book brings wonders to kids and young teens, and not so much targets young adults as an audience.
    Aliza L. Grade 12