by Brian Selznick
Overview: This is the second graphic novel by Selznick. (His first was the popular Invention of Hugo Cabret.) Two story lines run through this book and converge at the end. The main characters are deaf, and the story centers around a museum.
I loved the mystery of the book and how the art and the text went together so well. One of the stories is told mainly through the drawings and the other through the text. Very creative and enjoying to read!
I did feel like the story would be hard for younger readers to follow. My 9-year-old read it and understood some of the story. However, a middle schooler would probably get even more out the book.
Positive elements: visually beautiful, explores the Deaf culture, well-written, creative
Negative elements: an out-of-wedlock child, a few different deaths, a kid hiding and smoking, some mysticism
Conclusion: Kids love these illustrated novels because they can read a 630 page book in one day! However, I would only recommend this book to middle schoolers and older. Not only would they be able to follow and appreciate the mystery better, but they could handle some of the negative elements better.