Friday, October 17, 2014

[Review: Chopsticks by Jessica Anthony and Rodrigo Corral]

Author: Jessica Anthony and Rodrigo Corral
Series: None
Pages: 272
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Thriller, Graphic Novel
Date Published: February 2nd, 2012
Publisher: Razorbill
Format Read: Paperback from the library


After her mother died, Glory retreated into herself and her music. Her single father raised her as a piano prodigy, with a rigid schedule and the goal of playing sold-out shows across the globe. Now, as a teenager, Glory has disappeared. As we flash back to the events leading up to her disappearance, we see a girl on the precipice of disaster. Brilliant and lonely, Glory is drawn to an artistic new boy, Frank, who moves in next door. The farther she falls, the deeper she spirals into madness. Before long, Glory is unable to play anything but the song "Chopsticks."

But nothing is what it seems, and Glory's reality is not reality at all. In this stunningly moving novel told in photographs, pictures, and words, it's up to the reader to decide what is real, what is imagined, and what has been madness all along...

My Thoughts:

An Open Letter To Chopsticks,

You just blew my mind. I had no idea what you were when I picked you up at the library. I've been on a graphic novel kick lately and I saw that you were a book told through multimedia and I knew I had to "read" you. You're like "reading" a favorite Indie movie. Everything is so off kilter, but at the end of it all, you're still left with the knowledge that you've experienced something special. So, thanks for the memories.

-The White Unicorn

Honestly, I think that everyone should at least experience Chopsticks. I realize that it's not going to be everyone's cup of tea, but it's something so unique that I think everyone can get something out of it. The book is told through, mainly photography, and if you download the app, YouTube videos. It has pictures of Glory and Frank. It has pictures of paintings. It has pictures of landmarks. It has pictures of letters. It has wonderful photography inside of it's pages that ends up telling you a whole story. 

Chopsticks has very few words inside of it, but in the end you feel like you've read something shocking and inventive. I almost wish that I hadn't posted the summary at the top of this review, because the less you know about this book going into it, the better off you are. 

As I flipped through the pages I made sure to pay attention to every detail presented. I was being told a story without many words and so I knew that every single detail displayed would end up meaning something. I'm glad that's what I did, because if you flipped through this like it was a coffee table book, you'd miss out on the story that it's trying to tell.

Clues are woven throughout and even though I suspected the outcome, the conclusion still left me shocked. Honestly, I'd love to see this book brought to life on screen. I feel like people would love it just as much as I did if it was in movie form. Luckily, I think the book will do just fine on it's own. 

Chopsticks is a feat in the fact that it tells a story in a way that's different and it does it really really well. If you're in the mood for something that you've never seen done before, pick yourself up a copy. You won't be sorry.

P.S. if you've read it, let's talk about the ending!

4 Unicorns = Close to perfect!


Emily @ Forever Literary said...

Yes, yes, yes! I completely agree with you - Chopsticks may not be for everyone, but it's so different that everyone should give it a shot. I loved how we don't really get to know the characters the way you would in a traditional book - the dialogue and photographs in this story leave a lot more to the imagination.

And that ending! It's been more than two years since I read the book, so my memory is a bit fuzzy, but I still recall that open-ended madness. I was satisfied, though - at least it seemed to end happily.

{Scribbler} Skye said...

Sounds interesting, I'll have to give it a try! Great review!

Sandra @ Waiting For Wentworth said...

I enjoyed 'reading' Chopsticks too. I actually read it twice. The first time I got to the end and I was like 'Huh?' So the second time through, I slowed down and paid extra special attention to the details and it all came together for me. That Aha moment at the end where I figured everything out? Brilliant.

I've always thought that the synopsis gives away the ending.

Giselle said...

Oh wow this sounds like a really unique and different reading experience! I love giving these kinds of books a try and most often than not they really surprise me! I had no idea what this one was even about before! I'll def have to add it to my wishlist! :)