Sunday, March 15, 2015

{BookTalk} The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone: Adele Griffin

Rating: 75%
Series: None
Genre: Realistic Fiction,  Mystery, Multi-Media, Young Adult, Fiction,
Publisher: Soho Teen
Publication Date: August 12, 2014
Page Count: 256
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library

Goodreads Synopsis: National Book Award-finalist Adele Griffin tells the fully illustrated story of a brilliant young artist, her mysterious death, and the fandom that won't let her go.

From the moment she stepped foot in NYC, Addison Stone’s subversive street art made her someone to watch, and her violent drowning left her fans and critics craving to know more. I conducted interviews with those who knew her best—including close friends, family, teachers, mentors, art dealers, boyfriends, and critics—and retraced the tumultuous path of Addison's life. I hope I can shed new light on what really happened the night of July 28.

Disclaimer: BookTalks mean that there are clearly marked spoilers, so proceed at your own risk.

Who Would I Recommend This Book To?
For fans of mysteries, unreliable narrators, and psychological thrillers like the Mara Dyer Trilogy, We Were Liars, Andrew Smith,

Background & Backstory?
I had no genuine desire to read The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone until my school's library got the book in and my librarian and I delved into this lengthy conversation about how to shelve multi-media novels. With that in mind, coupled with the intriguing premise, I had to read it.

What Was My Reaction Upon Finishing?

Multi-Media Books | My latest Sofia Speculates dives into the nitty gritty of multi-media novels and my overall opinion of them, but now I want to discuss the way Adele Griffin used art to truly bring this story to life. Addison Stone is an art prodigy, so naturally, Griffin supplies us with photographs of her work from sculptures to drawings to paintings. What is more, there are also photographs of Addison with various characters in the story, aiding readers in picturing certain scenes and crucial events in the overall story arc. I have to admit that not all of the graphics made sense in the context they came from, nevertheless, they enriched the reading experience of this particular story, succeeding in their job of being the various threads making up a great tapestry.

The "It's Not a Biography" Issue | My school's librarian originally had issues with how to shelve The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone because Adele Griffin goes to painstaking measures to get the reader to believe Addison's story is a true one. Obviously, everyone in America would have heard of Addison Stone had she been a real person, but the amount of "newspaper clippings," "magazine articles," and "photographs" of her truly added to the larger-than-life image Adele painted of her protagonist. My librarian also pointed out that she would have loved to know how Griffin accumulated all of the photos/images and the whole behind-the-scenes process of creating this book.

Is this book a mystery? | One of the issues the librarian and I discussed was the mystery behind Addison Stone. As readers, we delve deeper and deeper in Addison's life, every bit and piece of people's narration being thrown onto the grand canvas known as the big picture of this story. But because of the way it ended, on has to ask themselves if Adele Griffin intended for it to be a mystery. I accepted the truths the author presented, but another reader could have easily interpreted the premise as a call to action "to find out what really happened." The best comparison I can make is with the book We Were Liars in terms of the type of character Addison was as well as the air of mystery and "something is not alright" that surrounded the novel.

Toxic Relationships & Teenage Love | The majority of the bookish community detests insta-love and love shapes of any kind. While it can be annoying, I never usually effected as much as I was with the dynamics between Addison, Lincoln, and Zach. She become so involved, both emotionally and physically with the both of them at different times. I have never once read about a relationship in a novel before and said to myself, "She should get out of this ASAP because of how bad he is for her." because I truly believe that she may not have gone to the same extremes she did, had it not been for the unhealthy relationships she was involved in,

How Likely Is It That I Will Read Another Book By This Author?
There is obviously no way Adele Griffin could possibly write another book like this, and I wouldn't be able to expect that either, but based off of everything that made up The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone, I will likely pick up another book by Adele Griffin. 

Conclusion: The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone is a gorgeously accomplished multi-media, multi-perspective masterpiece surrounding one unforgettable girl and an even more unforgettable story that will stay with you.

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