The Invention of Hugo Cabret

The Invention of Hugo Cabret

Other Format(Unabridged)

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2008 Caldecott Medal winner

The groundbreaking debut novel from bookmaking pioneer, Brian Selznick!

Orphan, clock keeper, and thief, Hugo lives in the walls of a busy Paris train station, where his survival depends on secrets and anonymity. But when his world suddenly interlocks—like the gears of the clocks he keeps—with an eccentric, bookish girl and a bitter old man who runs a toy booth in the station, Hugo's undercover life and his most precious secret are put in jeopardy. A cryptic drawing, a treasured notebook, a stolen key, a mechanical man, and a hidden message from Hugo's dead father form the backbone of this intricate, tender, and spellbinding mystery.

With 284 pages of original drawings and combining elements of picture book, graphic novel, and film, Brian Selznick breaks open the novel form to create an entirely new reading experience. Here is a stunning cinematic tour de force from a boldly innovative storyteller and artist.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781602521124
Publisher: Findaway World Llc
Publication date: 07/01/2007
Edition description: Unabridged
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 1.25(h) x 9.00(d)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

About the Author

Brian Selznick's books have garnered countless accolades worldwide, and have been translated into more than 35 languages. He is the Caldecott Medal-winning creator of the #1 New York Times bestsellers The Invention of Hugo Cabret, adapted into Martin Scorsese's Oscar-winning movie Hugo; and Wonderstruck, adapted into the eponymous movie by celebrated filmmaker Todd Haynes, with a screenplay by Selznick; as well as the New York Times bestsellers The Marvels and Baby Monkey, Private Eye. Most recently, he illustrated the 20th anniversary paperback edition covers of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series.


Brooklyn, New York, and San Diego, California

Date of Birth:

July 14, 1966

Place of Birth:

New Jersey


Rhode Island School of Design

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The Invention of Hugo Cabret 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 461 reviews.
Balina More than 1 year ago
this book is amazing. I couldn't put it down and was captivated. will buy more
Book-Worm_x3 More than 1 year ago
I immensely enjoyed this book. I promise that you'll find yourself engaged in the story. It was really captivating. If you think it starts out slow or is confusing in the beginning, keep on reading! The story just gets better and better, with one suspenseful moment after another. The drawings in the book are absolutely MASTERPIECES. They really help you picture the story. I think that Brian Selznick has a very creative, imaginative mind for thinking up this story and making its illustrations. FIVE STARS! A GREAT READ! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
CRESTeacher More than 1 year ago
This book was our school-wide (elementary) selection for January's Reading Month. This amazing book was enjoyed by children from first through fifth grade - as well as their teachers and the staff who heard all the buzz and wanted to read it for themselves.

The book itself crosses the genres of graphic novel and historical fiction. The author/illustrator does an amazing job of actually telling the story with pictures as well as text - not nearly having pictures that visual text for you. And the intricacies of his drawings are exquisite. (I've used a document camera, so my students can get the full feel of each stroke).

The book is captivating. The series of unknowns keep you glued to the book wanting and waiting for answers. The complexity of the characters, the historical realism, the wonderment of little-known automatons, and the ability to have the reader feel each and every one of Hugo's emotions makes this book a journey worth taking. My students even asked me to read it in place of recess!!!

The book is an easy and fairly quick read - almost half of its 584 pages are drawings. It lends itself to curious discussions, predictions, and text connections. There are even automaton paper models available online that go along with the story. I plan on sharing this book in the coming years with each new group of students. And I look forward to their enjoyment and wonderment.
SJKessel More than 1 year ago
Selznick, B. (2007). The Invention of Hugo Cabret. New York: Scholastic Press. 0439813786 This Caldecott winner redefined what a picturebook is. Over five hundred pages long, The Invention of Hugo Cabret interweaves illustrations and text to create deeper meaning, many deeper meanings. Set in Paris in the 1930s, Hugo Cabret is an orphan living in the walls of the city's train station, winding the clocks after his alcoholic uncle has disappeared. Involving magicians, silent films, dreams, trains, imagination and family, this books seeks to show the interconnections among various objects and people to create meaning and a fabulous invention. While working in a museum, Hugo's father, also a watchmaker, had discovered a mechanical man that a magician would have used to impress audiences in a show. The watchmaker becomes obsessed with trying to repair the machine. After his father dies in a fire, Hugo is taken in by his uncle and decides to take up his father's work on the mechanical man, guided only by his father's old notebook. That is, until the notebook is taken by an angry old shop owner in the train station. Having caught Hugo stealing mechanical parts, the old man takes the notebook from Hugo. To regain it, Hugo must partner with the goddaughter of the old man. The book is split into two parts, in similar fashion to how some older movies contained two acts. I have read this book three times. Each rereading has revealed more connections among the various elements of the text. Despite this, it is the presence of the illustrations that make this story extraordinary. Activities to do with the book: This is a wonderful book to share with students to encourage them to seek connections and make meaning of the text. Since the book is so huge, but also consists of so many illustrations and pages only half-filled by text, it can bolster young or struggling readers' confidence in their ability to read. This book could be used to trigger lessons about Western culture in the 1930s. Students could research the history of movies, trains, magic shows, and even the rise of the Nazi party. Favorite Quotes: "I want you to picture yourself sitting in the darkness, like the beginning of a movie. On screen, the sun will soon rise, and you will find yourself zooming toward a train station in the middle of the city" (Introduction). "But another story begins, because stories lead to other stories, and this one leads all the way to the moon" (p. 255). "If you've ever wondered where your dreams come from when you go to sleep at night, just look around. This is where they are made" (387). For more of my reviews, visit
livie_loo95 More than 1 year ago
I cam upon this book at my school when I was in the Newberry Club. It seemed rather big and I had never read or experienced a book of this size. So I checked it out and started reading it.
I first noticed the beatifuly detailed pictures that were inside. I al descovered that their was at least 2 to 5 pages of reading, than 1 or 3 pages of pictures to show the story in sequence instead of words.
As I read through the book I oved how Hugo had taken responsibly for the cocks in the train station, since his uncle who had been taking care of him due to a fatal fire that toook his parnts away had misterously vanished.
As I read about how Hugo dealed with life and responsiblites about the train station, I occured to me that this was a wonderfull book and awsome for teaching kids not steal or how life was for less unfourntant people.
It was also neat to lean how Hugos dad- a magic man and invtor had left a machine for hugo to try and fix that would soon become the center of Hugos life and what he did to finish it!
You must read this book!
hugocabretreader More than 1 year ago
This book is the BEST BOOK EVER!!!! I LOVE IT! I can't stop reading it! This book is for people who like to read books with a big mystery. You also don't know what is going to happen next! Like it doesn't give you any little hints! It also has alot of illustrations. You have to look at the pictures in order to understand the book! I recomend this book to people who are about 10-15! I'm 12 and I love it!
ChrisNgov More than 1 year ago
The Invention of Hugo Cabret is a great book. My favorite chapter in it was the last one, in which Hugo, the main character of the book tells us about his invention, soon to find that the invention itself is the book. What the author did in the book that I found interesting was the use of many pictures, which helps me visualize the story going on more. I liked everything about the book, and would only suggest to the author that he make a continuation of the book. I really liked this book, because it was the first book I have ever read that was this long, but surprisingly I finished it in 2 weeks, which for me is amazing. The age group I would recommend this book to would be for young teens.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Invention of Hugo Cabret: A Novel in Words and Pictures By: Brian Selznick. I personally loved this book because it was an amazingly mysterious and adventurous book and I can’t see why anyone wouldn’t like it. In this book the main character is Hugo Cabret. This 12-year old boy is an orphan who is also a part-time clocksmith in a train station. Hugo is infatuated with the continuation of building his and automaton that his father was building before he passed away. As a summary this book is simply the book is simply about a boy who continues to build on an automaton that he believes when he completes the task of building it that it will reveal a message from his deceased father. I really didn’t have a favorite part in this book because I enjoyed every part of the book equally. I absolutely loved this book and I still do. I recommend this book to anyone who likes drawings and pictures because, Brian Selznick’s pictures are very vivid, detailed, and descriptive. This was a very exciting book. It was also an excellent book and I would love to read it again. To me the theme of this book is never give up on what you believe in.  Mr. Brian Selznick definitely deserves this Caldecott Medal. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Invention of Hugo Cabret is a wonderful book full of many detail filled pages of pictures which make up almost half the book. The mix of pictures and text that describe the story were portrayed excellently. This book may be confusing at times but eventually everything will come to one single conclusion which will satisfy your needs. I love the way the pictures zoom in as you flip through them revealing the suspense of the scene before your eyes. Overall this book is a must read and I recommend reading it with a partner. I find this book one of the most creative ones I have ever seen and it deserves all the positive feedback.
Captain-Wonder-Bread More than 1 year ago
I truly enjoy this book. I’ll tell you that if you read it you will truly be amazed. At first you might think it’s confusing but it gets better and better as you go on. It’s about a boy who is an orphan and a thief; he has to keep up with the clocks in the train station. Later he meets a girl who loves books. So one day the girl gets Hugo to read his first book ever! Then he works for the girls grandpa .I’m not going to give much detail because I don’t want to spoil the ending. The author is the best drawler ever he has a creative mind, and I thank him for creating a wonderful book I give this book two thumbs up. It’s the BEST BOOK I EVER READ!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Many people in my school are drawn to this book because it is "easy" and has a lot of pictures. If this is so when you first looked at this book , think again! This book has one suspenseful moment after another! All of the illustrations are absolutely fantastic! I'd recommend this book to anyone who likes suspense and an action-packed, pleasant story with a boy of an interesting personality! This is a 5 star must-read for anyone for ages 10 and up!
AnonymousBK More than 1 year ago
Brian Selznick¿s novel The Invention of Hugo Cabret is filled with sadness, and exciting adventure. This great book is about a little boy named Hugo Cabret. Shortly after losing his father Hugo has to live with his uncle at a Paris train station, where he new home lye within the walls. His uncle works on trains during the day. One day when Hugo¿s uncle doesn¿t arrive home, Hugo finds out he won¿t be coming home for ¿awhile¿. Later that night Hugo finds one of his father¿s inventions in a box. But he can¿t seem to figure out what it does. This suspicion leads Hugo on his great journey to finding out what this creation¿s function is. After finding the invention Hugo, stared at it all night, but he still couldn¿t figure out what it does. The next morning Hugo goes to the library and meets a little girl. They talk and become close friends. Hugo looks for ways to activate the invention. He finally gets the man¿s arm to move, and it begins to sketch him a picture. Hugo believed that it would leave him a message from his dad, but what it turned out to be wasn¿t what he expected at all. I truly believe that book really did make its goal, and it kept me wanting more. It met its goal because it had very good description, events, and very interesting characters. I really never wanted to put it down; I constantly had that book in my hand. Towards the end of the book Hugo and his new friend find out what Hugo¿s father¿s creation did, but they don¿t really understand why it does what it does. The invention leaves him and the reader with many questions like: why did his father make this, did it really leave him some kind of message or did the picture have to do with his uncle¿s disappearance? This book had me asking all kinds of questions, but I really enjoyed this book. Overall this book really surprised me, because it has a lot of pictures so I didn¿t think it would turn out as good as it did. In my opinion this is a really good interesting book, and anyone should read it. This book was one of my favorites, and I recommend this to anyone that loves adventure, and mystery.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My daughter checked this book out in the library and loved it so we bought it for her. I also loved reading the book, very artistic!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
THe use of beautiful illustrations to advance this story is unique and wonderful --the illustrations are literally part of the text. 8 and 10 year old grandchildren both enjoy the book immensely - well deserving of it's Caldecott medal.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My daughter started reading this at school. When she saw it in our local B&N, she begged for it like I've never her seen before. She has read and re-read the book at least 5 times already and loves the drawings. The "librarian" at the store also raved about the book and told us how wonderful a selection it is. Enjoy.
Anonemous1 More than 1 year ago
If you enjoy reading fascinating and unique novels, then The Invention of Hugo Cabret is a great read for you! This novel is completely different than any other book you've ever read! I enjoyed The Invention of Hugo Cabret mostly because of its extravagant illustrations. The great storyline of this book hooked me into reading the whole day! Two factors in The Invention of Hugo Cabret that also make it interesting are that it is mysterious and quite creative. The images also a unique effect that no other book has to offer! They create a new motion-picture presentation. Some things that I didn't like about this book was that it the pictures overwhelmed the text at some times. Also, at some points in the book, it was too confusing. Overall, I thought this book was a must-read!
grandmajeanette More than 1 year ago
My Granddaughter broght this book home from school and I read it with her. I was so impressed with this Author and book that I had to buy it for my library at home. I believe everyone will enjoy the illustrations as much as the book. What a creative and impressive Author Brian Selznick is. Highly recommend this book to those who like something different and unique.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My 8 year old loved this book. She loved the story, the mystery and the illustrations. I can not say enough about this book. I enjoyed every moment of it as much as she did. I think boys and girls will love this book equally.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hugo Cabret (pronounced Ca-ber-ay) Is a good book. Their wasn't much writing but really great pictures. Brian Selznick is a good drawer. Hugo's father dies so Hugo tries to fix his fathers machine. An old man (who he works for) grandchild befriends Hugo and they together find out how the old man really was like as a moviestar.
Woodchuck90 More than 1 year ago
This book is great for young readers because the words just fly by. It is filled with pictures so the reader can follow along very well.

I recomend this book for anyone who loves to find twists and turns in a book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
ORPHAN, CLOCK KEEPER, AND THIEF, Hugo lives in the walls of a busy Paris train station, where his survival depends on secrets and anonymity. But when his world suddenly ...
Guest More than 1 year ago
Hugo Cabret lives in a train station in Paris, France.One day his father finds an automan in the attic of the museum.Then his father is killed in a fire.Hugo finds the auto man one day. Will Hugo fix the automan?What will the automan do? Read The Invention of Hugo Cabret.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book has suprises around every corner non stop secrets. With an exiting twist to the story
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Invention of Hugo Cabret is a great book! It is full of crazy surprises! Anybody would like it!