Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Sigh by Marjane Satrapi [Book Review & Giveaway]

When I first got hold of The Sighby Marjane Satrapi, I was immediately drawn in by its overall look and feel. I know they say not to judge a book by its cover, but some books make me want to break the rules. As a small hard covered graphic novel, The Sighplays out more like a fairytale and had me longing for the storybooks of my childhood.

As soon as the tale unfolds with the beautifully woven first line,
Whether this tale be true or false, none can tell, for none were there to witness it themselves.
I felt it necessary to cozy up, shut off my phone and sit a spell in the safe comfort of Satrapi's creation. It begins simply enough with a man wanting to keep his three daughter's happy while having to leave them constantly on his business travels. He promises each a gift of their choice, from the far reaches of the Earth. He grants all wishes but one: his daughter Rose wanted a blue bean.

In this magical world, when Rose emits a sigh of disappointment, The Sigh, an enigmatic character, arrives to grant her wish. Everyone is so happy they nearly miss the deal struck leading to the eventual price to be paid. Throughout the tale Rose and The Sigh journey to find something far more precious than a blue bean and, as readers, we learn some important lessons about promises, loss, mourning, deceit and, of course, love.

Satrapi's artwork is bold, colorful and expressive. Her characters are mysterious, ugly, dangerous and human. In the end, the story was reminiscent of some stories in Greek mythology - there was a combination of tragedy, magic and hard lessons learned by those who had done wrong. When I read the book a second time, I did so aloud, to my husband, and felt as though this was, perhaps, how the book was originally meant to be read - shared just like the storybooks of our childhood and as the Greek myths were shared before them.

I truly enjoyed this book and feel it is also one of those books that simply looks pretty on a bookshelf. Kudos to Marjane Satrapi, the English translator Edward Gauvin and the designer Fawn Lau!

Here is a preview of the book provided by the book's publisher, Archaia:

Are you wishing you had your very own copy of The Sigh to read and share now? If so, enter the Giveaway below using the Raffelcopter widget. HURRY you only have until November 3, 2011 at 12:01 AM (EST)!!
Please read the Terms & Conditions carefully. You have five different ways to enter the giveaway. The fifth entry type "Tweet About the Giveaway" is the only entry that you can do more than once (you can do it once each day!!), thereby increasing your chance to win!


  1. I love the way you describe this but especially that you read a loud to your husband mine would think I'm nuts ;)

  2. You see there you go assuming my husband didn't think I was nuts! I think he realized he had two choices: sit and listen, or I am going to bug you about reading the book all day, all night until you do so!! ;)

    (It also helps that he is an English teacher!)