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 readers flash back to the events leading up to her disappearance, they see a girl on the precipice of disaster.
Chopsticks…Chopsticks…Chopsticks… A couple of words comes to mind when I think of this novel…Different, Unique, and not in a bad way. Chopsticks opened my eyes and my mind to a different way of reading and enjoying a book. It showed me a different way of getting lost and absorbed into a world created by Jessica Anthony and Rodrigo Corral.
When I first brought this book into work, my friends looked at it, and questioned what I was reading? They picked it up, flipped through it…looked at me with the “one eyebrow up” look and asked what was up with this picture book I was reading? Enter my sales pitch. I told them that this was a new novel that introduced me to a whole different way of reading a book. That the pictures in the book told the story. I told them it was epic! That it was evolutionary. I seriously pitched like I’d never pitched before. And then I told them that there was an actual app for the book, and I think that was when I sold it.
In all honesty, this book was an amazing journey. Yes…a journey. When I first got Chopsticks, I flipped through it and thought “Seriously? I’m going to be done this book in like 20 minutes! It’s only pictures…” Boy, was I wrong. Yes, the book is pretty much just pictures, but mixed amongst the pictures are newspaper articles and text messages. And it’s these little extra’s that made the book what it is…A peek into the lives of piano prodigy Glory Fleming and Frank Mendoza. We are allowed this glimpse of how they meet, and the relationship they build.
It’s like when you go to an art gallery, and you and everyone else are looking at this one painting. Everyone will see something slightly different, have a different insight, affect them a different way. Anyone who reads Chopsticks will walk away with something different from the last person, simply because with the book being mainly pictures, the reader is able to build their own story, in their own words…even though the gist of the story will be obvious to everyone. As well, some of the pictures in the book will have more impact than others. For example, for me it was the obvious racism that Frank has to face when he goes to a new school after coming to America from Argentina. All it took was four pictures, but the message is clear and left an impression.
For me, this book was pure genius. I recommend this book to anyone who wants a unique reading experience. You won’t be disappointed.