Chopsticks // Graphic Novel Review

Graphic Novel Review
Authors: Jessica Anthony is the writer and Rodrigo Corral the illustrator of Chopsticks. Jessica has had short stories published in numerous publications in America and Rodrigo Corral runs ‘Rodrigo Corral Studio’ and has designed book covers for writers such as John Green.

Rating: ***


Chopsticks is what I would class as a ‘graphic novel’ but it is more a scrapbook than anything.

At 304 pages you’d think it would be a long read but I read it in less than half an hour after it arrived. It was easy to get through for lots of different reasons:

1.   You can’t really put it down. As soon as you do you lose your place and forget what happens as the story is told entirely through beautiful images. It is easier to forget images than it is to forget words and plotline.

2.   It is only pictures with the occasional IM and scribbled text to propel the story. Because of this it is easy to just flick through and have a simple yet developed idea of what is going on in the story.

3.   It is also very gripping.

The story itself revolves around a young girl called Glory (short for Gloria) who is a child prodigy piano player, and her neighbour Frank (short for Francisco). Glory lost her mother in a car crash and her father is an over-bearing piano teacher. Frank is an artist who has little interest in anything besides that and Glory.

The story is simple star-crossed lovers, almost with Frank being a disappointment to Glory’s father who tries to separate them by sending Glory on tour.

The relationship is slightly ‘insta-love’ (literally!) and also a little cliché but also sweet. Glory becomes obsessed with playing Chopsticks in her renditions of Bach and Tchaikovsky, and the reason for this is made clear at the end of the story and it is a very sweet and final moment in the story.

The pictures themselves are gorgeous! Simply stunning and they work well and easily to propel the story, but ultimately you’re just looking at pretty pictures to a sweet, yet cliché, story.

It could be the first of many books in this kind of genre, and I certainly shall be looking out for some for the images alone, but overall it is not the best book ever written or put together.

I would recommend this book to people interested but unsure of graphic novels, photographers and for younger readers. It is a very pretty book and has a clever twist at the end of an otherwise dull plot.


No comments