Expanding upon the genre-breaking form he invented in his trailblazing debut novel,The Invention of Hugo Cabret, Brian Selznick creates another awe-inspiring, multilayered reading experience.
Wonderstruck weaves together two compelling independent stories, set fifty years apart — Ben’s story, which takes place in 1977, is told in words; Rose’s story in 1927 is told in pictures. Ever since his mother died, Ben feels lost. At home with her father, Rose feels alone. When Ben finds a mysterious clue hidden in his mother’s room, and when a tempting opportunity presents itself to Rose, both children risk everything to find what’s missing. Rich, complex, affecting and beautiful, Wonderstruck is a stunning achievement from a uniquely gifted artist and visionary.
Thirteen-year-old Travis has a secret: he can’t read. But a shrewd teacher and a sassy girl named Velveeta are about to change everything in this witty and deeply moving novel. With sympathy, humor, and disarming honesty, Pat Schmatz brings to life a cast of utterly believable characters — and captures the moments of trust and connection that make all the difference. Schmatz addresses an issue — illiteracy — that is very real, but does so in a fresh, teen-friendly voice, and the masterfully realized characters include not only the main character, Travis, and his new friend, outrageous Velveeta, but also a brilliant teacher and a determined, dedicated librarian. The characters in this book come from very sad circumstances, but this is ultimately a very hopeful and, indeed, entertaining read.
Growing up in rural Wisconsin, Pat Schmatz‘s passions were reading, basketball, and the woods. She lived in Michigan, California, and Minnesota before landing back in central Wisconsin. She still travels whenever she can, from Japan to Rhode Island to Vancouver to New Zealand. When she’s not traveling, Pat does administrative work for the Legal Aid Society of Minneapolis. She is currently at work on a new novel.
Both books are available at Monkey See Monkey Read in downtown Northfield.