Every four years since 2007, writer-illustrator Brian Selznick has published a new book. They are intense and adventure-filled. They also are big and fat — thick with impressive heft in the middle-grade children’s book realm. (One even has gilded pages. Fancy!)
Most remarkable, though, is this: About half of each book is told through pictures.
It’s a dynamic concept. The first book, “The Invention of Hugo Cabret,” later was made into the movie “Hugo.” The second, “Wonderstruck,” (my personal favorite) tells two tales simultaneously — one via word and one via image. The latest, “The Marvels” has the golden pages. Oooh-la-la!
These books have won numerous accolades — from NY Times Bestseller to the Caldecott Medal to National Book Award finalist. But the best praise comes from the kids (and their grown-ups) who devour them.
The magic of these books is in the illustrations and the manner in which they elevate the stories. For sure there also is excitement in a child poking through the pages of a four-inch-thick book and loving it!
Selznick’s art might look familiar. He’s illustrated such favorites as Andrew Clements’ “Frindle” and “Lunch Money.”