This novel was born from a photograph that author David Levithan saw stuck on a fridge. The author decided to draw photographer Jonathan Farmer into the idea of writing a photographic novel. The idea had to be a joint venture and that is how it worked. The photographer would send the author a photo and the author would write the story incorporating the photo.
At no given time did the author know what photo he would receive next and the photographer never knew the story being written until the first draft.
The story written is about Ariel who has gone away. It’s never clear in the novel if Ariel is dead or alive but someone is stalking another character, Evan by sending him photos. Evan feels responsible for what has happened to Ariel and hence the photos seem punishing, condemning and sometimes threatening. Tormented enough, Evan is determined to track down the sender. The story also examines how well you really know someone.
Some of the story is told in vignette style chapters and David Levithan has also used a technique called strikethrough which I found rather distracting.
Compelling and thought provoking, this novel incorporates the uniqueness of this famous author who is daring enough to experiment with new ways in developing his writing.
Review by Janice
image by mikaelf