Tuesday, October 16, 2012

REVIEW: Picture The Dead by Griffin & Brown

Illustrated fiction offers the reader a wonderful gift. No wondering if your imagination matches the authors intent, instead you have  the characters wonderfully illustrated before you. With Picture the Dead Lisa Brown's illustrations are essential to the mood Adele Griffin has created in this gothic thriller.
Through letters and illustrations we delve into the life of Jennie Pritchett. It is 1864, and like many young women, Jennie's life is consumed by the Civil War. She has lost her twin brother Toby and waits restlessly for news about her fiance Will. Late one evening a carriage pulls up to the Pritchett house and deposits a wounded Quinn, twin brother to Will. When Jennie looks into Quinn's eyes she knows deep in her heart that Will is dead.
Soon Jennie is having strange dreams and wondering at Quinn's behavior. Quinn is surly and secretive. He tries to twist Jennie's beliefs about who Will was and what his intentions towards her truly were. Quinn also begins to court her in an inappropriate manner. In the midst of this, Will's parents are deeply in mourning and Jennie's Aunt is plotting to remove her from the household.
When the patriarch of the Pritchett family asks Jennie to set up a appointment with a renowned medium in hopes of having some proof  that Will's spirit is at rest, Jennie has a startling visitation and realizes Will is not at peace.
Now the clues begin to form regarding Will's death and Quinn's ultimate motives.
This was such an enveloping read! I've become quite the fan of illustrated novels and really wish more would be published. Though I love e-books, I would really recommend getting the physical version of this book, The whole layout of the book, chapter headings and illustrations are best experienced by hand. This book kept me guessing right up til the end and has a very satisfying conclusion. I would love to read more books by this creative team.

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