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Wonderstruck

4.13 of 5 stars 4.13  ·  rating details  ·  33,748 ratings  ·  4,225 reviews
Ben and Rose secretly wish for better lives. Ben longs for his unknown father. Rose scrapbooks a famous silent actress. When Ben finds clues and Rose reads enticing news, the children independently run to New York for what they are missing. Ben's story in words, Rose's in pictures, come together in deafness.
Hardcover, 640 pages
Published September 13th 2011 by Scholastic Press
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Newbery 2012
3rd out of 167 books — 675 voters
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Best Graphic Novels for Children
8th out of 539 books — 637 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Cara
Impressive and moving. Ok end of review. Just kidding, though I'm not sure if I have the words because there is so much that the reader experiences that isn't understood but felt.

The story is told from two perspectives. One from a girl named Rose who lives in the 20s and boy named Ben who lives in the 70s. Rose's story is told through pictures and Ben's through words. The two stories intertwine in the most fitting way.

I thought the combination of words and pictures was perfect for the story of...more
Lora
Jan 31, 2012 Lora rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of Brian Selznick and illustrated children's fiction
Shelves: lib-read
Despite Wonderstruck's 630 pages, I read it within the span of three hours. Granted, over 460 of those pages are illustrations, but I still believe this fact attests to Wonderstruck's ability to keep its reader engaged and entertained.

Wonderstruck is two stories in one: it is Ben's story, and it is Rose's story. With the former's being told in words, and the latter's being told in illustrations, this textile tale takes two youngsters, a book, a turtle, a bookstore, a museum, and several supporti...more
Lisa Vegan
Wonderful! Fabulous! So special! Very clever!

I liked this book even better than The Invention of Hugo Cabret, and that’s saying a lot. it’s even more emotionally touching than that first book.

Ben. Rose. Jamie. Etc. All of them touched me.

For not the first time I am tempted to create a new-york or nyc shelf.

I read this book in one day. Rose’s story told via pictures and Ben’s told via text were both mesmerizing.

I have memories of the 1964 New York World’s Fair, which is mentioned/”shown” in this...more
Tatiana
Oct 01, 2011 Tatiana rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Tatiana by: Kirkus
Wonderstruck is over 600 pages long and I read it in one sitting. Yeah, this book is 75% illustrations, but still it's no small fit for a children's book to keep my attention like that.

Brian Selznick intertwines two stories together in his Novel in Words and Pictures. 12-year old Ben lives in 1977 Minnesota and mourns the death of his mother. 50 years earlier a girl flees her New Jersey home and goes to New York. Ben's story is told entirely in words, and Rose's - in pictures.

Of course we know...more
Wendy
I definitely missed the boat somehow on this book. Rather than feeling smarter than all my friends who rated this four or five stars (they all did)--which is what bad or mediocre reviews of well-loved books sometimes sound like--I feel dumber, because I sense that there must be something I'm missing.

I read the first third of the book in one gulp and remember being fascinated. Several weeks went by before I was able to get back to it. That might have had something to do with it, or maybe I was ju...more
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
I opened this book with an almost giddy feeling of anticipation, knowing I'd love it but not knowing quite what to expect. It's more fun if you don't know too much, so I'll try to share my excitement without revealing plot details.

Wonderstruck weaves together two stories. One is told with words, the other with masterful drawings. Ben Wilson and Rose Kincaid are separated by 50 years, but they have some things in common. Both are longing for a missing parent. Both have lost their hearing. They'r...more
Reynje
Weighing in at around 630 pages, Wonderstruck is not particularly a commute-friendly book. However, as a large part of the story is told through illustrations, it’s also a book that can be read quickly – fortunately for me, as there was simply no way I could carry this around as per my usual reading habits.

Wonderstruck tells two intersecting stories, beginning decades apart. Ben and Rose are two characters who understand what is it like to miss something, and to feel alone. It’s this sense of y...more
Betsy
Hype. What’s the point? A publisher believes that a book is going to be big so they crank up the old hype machine and do everything in their power to draw attention to it long before its publication date. That’s what they did for Brian Selznick’s Wonderstruck and I was sad to see it. As far as I was concerned, Selznick’s The Invention of Hugo Cabret was too tough an act to follow. Here you had a book that managed to get hundreds of librarians across the nation of America to redefine in their own...more
Scot
Is it possible to give more than five stars?....it's been a long time since a book had such an emotional impact on me. I am wonderstruck.
Sarah
Perhaps it's the over reaching title, or the unavoidable comparison to The Invention of Hugo Cabret, but Brian Selznick's newest offering in his unique storytelling format felt a bit underwhelming. Once again we have an orphan searching for his meaning in a mysterious, little known humanities offshoot. Like Hugo, we meet Ben when he is 12 year's old and has recently become alone in the world, this time, in a 1977 Minnesota world. As Ben searches through his mother's things, he discovers some clu...more
Kathryn
"Ben remembered reading about curators in 'Wonderstruck', and thought about what it meant to curate your own life... What would it be like to pick and choose the objects and stories that would go into your own cabinet [of wonders]? How would been curate *his* own life? And then, thinking about his museum box, and his house, and his books, and the secret room, he realized he'd already begun doing it. Maybe, thought Ben, we are all cabinets of wonders."

And this book is a wonder! It's "the whole pa...more
kari
This book must simply be experienced. I don't want to describe it too much because seeing it for yourself will be half the fun.
There are two separate stories; one told with words and one told in pictures. They seem to be somewhat connected as you step from one story into the other. Even though they are set in different times and different locations, the jumps between are actually seamless and the way in which they are done, is terrific.
This book would probably be enjoyed by a young reader or e...more
Donalyn
Although there were too many coincidences, I thought this book was amazing. I want to read it again and look for the allusions to Konigsburg that Selznick mentions in his author's notes.
Emma
In 1927, Rose spends her days making a scrapbook about a famous actress and turning her workbooks into paper recreations of buildings. In her house in Hoboken, Rose looks out at Manhattan and dreams of leaving her home. When Rose sees an article in the newspaper about her favourite actress doing a play in New York, that might be the incentive Rose needs to leave New Jersey. In 1977, Ben mourns for his mother who died earlier that year. One night when he returns to his old house, a lightening sto...more
Barb
My daughter and I read 'The Invention of Hugo Cabret' when it came out back in January 2007, she adored it and said it was her favorite book. When I saw Brian Selznick published another book in the same vein I put it on my wish list. When I saw it offered up on the Vine I was thrilled and quickly snatched it up.

We read to our children every night at bedtime, my husband and I take turns reading with each child so that every other night I read to the same kid. Sometimes I find a book that is reall...more
Scope
When The Invention of Hugo Cabret came out in 2007, it felt like more than a simple blurring of genres, it felt like an innovation. Beautifully crafted and well-received, its deserved victory lap was impressive – a tradition-busting Caldecott award, bestseller lists, a National Book Award finalist nod, even an upcoming Martin Scorsese film adaptation. Almost four years later Selznick returns with Wonderstruck, and it’s fantastic. Not only has Selznick adapted his Hugo Cabret format to a new stor...more
Sesana
Wonderstruck is two separate stories that meet and intertwine at the end. Set 50 years apart, Rose and Ben live rather different lives, with more and more crossover as the book develops. In 1927, Rose lives just outside New York City. She's deaf, and her father doesn't want to let her leave the house. Not safe enough. Desperate for a certain amount of freedom, and to see a silent movie star she's somewhat obsessed with, she runs away to the city, and the American Museum of Natural History. In 19...more
Nicolek
Wonder Struck By: Brian Selznick
I loved the book Wonder Struck by: Brian Selznick. The writing was fantastic. He used some vivacious, vivid verbs, descriptive adjectives, and there were cliff hangers at the end of each chapter. I would give this book 5 out of 5 stars because I really enjoyed how I couldn’t put the book down, how the two stories came together in the end, and how well the pictures were draw.
First of all, I couldn’t put the book down. When there was a cliff hanger in Ben’s story,...more
Sharon
4th&up.
Unfortunately, I was a bit underwhelmed by this story. I adored The Invention of Hugo Cabret, and had high expectations for this companion novel, but I felt that Wonderstruck missed the mark. It was a good novel, but did not achieve the greatness of the first.
On one hand, Wonderstruck had too much in common with Hugo. Secret rooms and important structures, movies as a secondary escapist theme, two children who yearn for homes and a family of their own, and more.
On the other hand, thi...more
Lynne Perednia
Ben is a boy now living with his aunt, uncle and two cousins since his single mother died in an accident. His aunt and uncle talk about selling his mother's house next door on a Minnesota lakeshore. Lonely, he sneaks over to his old home one night when he sees a light. It's his cousin Janet, dressing in his mother's clothes and playing her old music. He talks his cousin into letting him stay in the house alone for a bit. Ben discovers a note in one of his mother's books that leads him to believe...more
Edel
This book.... I am still gobsmacked after reading it... The pictures!!!!!!! I could say they are incredible and one of the most fantastic things your eyes will ever come across but even that is not enough praise.. I took my time on each of the pictures and I can honestly say Mr Selznick just blew me away. The details of each picture were so beautiful they could take your breath away.
The story is told in two ways. My the little boy with words and by the little girl with pictures then towards the...more
The Reading Countess
Reminiscent of Selznick's Hugo Cabret, this monster of a book (one of my son's friends mistook it for the Bible) is hard to put down. Set alternately in both the 1970's and the early 1900's, I kept asking myself, "Huh?" throughout the book. Wonderstruck would make a wonderful book for teaching asking questions, because the reader is constantly wondering who and why people come into the story and how they relate to one another. It goes without saying that the illustrations not only push the story...more
Jessica
Another gorgeous combination of text and pictures from Brian Selznick. I particularly loved Rose's all picture storyline, since it was like seeing a silent film-- fitting for her, as you will see!

They need to invent a new category for his books come awards season, they really do! The Caldecott is for illustration, but the text is just as good, and supposedly the Newbery is for books that don't require illustration as part of their narrative . . . which rather leaves this book left out! I hope th...more
Selviana Rahayu
Pernah membaca buku setebal 640 hanya dalam waktu satu jam saja? I just did it!

Tentu saja bisa, sebab buku yang saya baca adalah graphic novel terbaru karya Brian Selznick yang berjudul Wonderstruck.

Kalau dilihat dari sampulnya, mungkin Anda akan berpikir bahwa buku ini menceritakan fenomena alam yaitu sambaran kilat. Tidak sepenuhnya salah sih namun perlu diketahui juga bahwa wonderstruck yang dimaksud di sini bukanlah kilat melainkan sebuah buku tentang kilat. Buku inilah yang akan membawa Ben...more
Mari - loves to read
Wonderful, excellent drawings, moving story/stories, different, RECOMMENDED. I just want to hug this book :)
Jeff
I cried like a baby.
Josiah
"We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars."

Wonderstruck, P. 22

I don't think it's even possible to discuss this book without talking about the artwork. Brian Selznick has become, perhaps, the premier juvenile literature artist of his time, at the very least deserving of comparison to other such contemporary greats as Kadir Nelson and Tomie dePaola. Comparisons even to greats from previous eras, such as Robert Lawson, Garth Williams and Holling C. Holling, seem to leav...more
Brooke
Brain Selznick is simply an amazing storyteller. What he did with this book is genius! I loved the story and how one was told in words and the other through pictures! Okay...the PICTURES...much like in The Invention of Hugo Cabret the pictures are just beautiful; having the characters being deaf really added to the telling of the story especially an illustrated story. I have a cousin who is deaf and know some sign language so I loved understanding somewhat of what the characters were going throu...more
Emma
I read The Invention of Hugo Cabret in one sitting, and was so fascinated both by the story and the gorgeous pencil illustrations, that I jumped on the newest books by the same author.

I found in it the same format and the same quality of illustrations. The story was good too, though easier to...

To read my whole review, please go to:
http://wordsandpeace.wordpress.com/20...

Emma @ Words And Peace
Chris
Reviewed first at Brunner's Bookshelf

I have sat here at my computer looking at the blinking cursor trying to figure out what to say about this book and I am just at a loss. There are some books that you don't expect to take your literary breath away and this childrens' book did that to me. My wife and I took turns reading Selznick's other book The Invention of Hugo Cabret to our son and really had a great time. We liked that book and when we found out that Selznick had written this one we added...more
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38120
Hello there. My name is Brian Selznick and I’m the author and illustrator of The Invention of Hugo Cabret. I was born in 1966 in New Jersey. I have a sister who is a teacher, a brother who is a brain surgeon, and five nephews and one niece. I studied at The Rhode Island School of Design and after I graduated from college I worked at Eeyore’s Books for Children in New York City. I learned all about...more
More about Brian Selznick...
The Invention of Hugo Cabret The Houdini Box The Boy of a Thousand Faces The Hugo Movie Companion: A Behind the Scenes Look at How a Beloved Book Became a Major Motion Picture The Robot King

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“Ben wished the world was organized by the Dewey decimal system. That way you'd be able to find whatever you were looking for.” 877 likes
“Maybe, thought Ben, we are all cabinets of wonders.” 18 likes
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