The Sculptor

Posted: April 24, 2015 in Reviews
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One of the most intimidating things when finding a new book to read is the thickness of the binding. Starting a book requires a lot of focus and instigating of whether or not this world is worth spending time in. A standard novel forces the reader to rev up their imaginations, which some may argue comic books take away from.

Scott McCloud’s The Sculptor forces you to utilize imagination and interpretation. It’s 500 pages, super heavy, but has a lot to offer. It follows tragic New Yorker David Smith as he makes a deal with Death. In exchange of being able to sculpt anything he wants, David will die in 200 days. What ensues are encounters with fallen angels, shady artists, and, despite the ability to create any kind of art he pleases, David suffers from lack of inspiration.

David is extremely self-absorbed and delivers plenty of “woe is me” moments, but the presentation is engaging. McCloud wants us to root for David and we do. His determination to leave an impression on the world is inspiring and feels like we’re inside the artist every person secretly wants to be. Panels have a black and blue tint, setting the tone of the story.

As the book moves on, David learns the secrets of those around him, including those hiding in his past, helping him understand that the future is inevitable. The characters in his life share philosophical perspectives on life and how one should live it. David’s impending death is kept as a secret and might be the one thing holding David back from getting what he needs.

No spoilers here, but the ending is sure to be divisive among readers. It left me sad, but I found myself rereading the last few pages and wanting to revisit the story. Whenever we follow David through the streets of New York, we get snippets of pedestrian conversations. In Scott McCloud’s world, everyone has a story and in The Sculptor, we get a glimpse of someone’s reality.

  1. Dear Reader. says:

    Good review! I’ve been thinking about getting this book but I wasn’t sure whether it was worth the time or the twenty pound price tag.

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