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Lunch » Tags » Books » Reviews » Griffin & Sabine: An Extraordinary Correspondence » User review

"How strange to have a paper love"

  • Aug 12, 2008
  • by
Sometimes it seems true that "there is no new thing under the sun," but once in a while something truly original comes our way. Griffin & Sabine. An Extraordinary Correspondence is one of those books that restores your faith in creativity.

Their souls are joined by a mysterious connection -- Sabine, a stamp designer raised on a South Pacific island and carrying on her father's exploration of the natural world; Griffin, a lonely London post card artist struggling to find relief for his ailing soul. How does Sabine find him, how does she SEE his work as if with her very own eyes? What can come of their love story? Is their correspondence enough?

Author-illustrator Nick Bantock reveals the story in letters and postcards. Griffin's drawings are angular "realism with a twist" while Sabine takes elements of nature and embellishes them. The envelopes are fixed to the page with typed or lettered pages tucked inside, giving the reader a sense of participation in unfolding the letters to read them. The art and design concept are the real story here, though the small amount of text carries complex, well-expressed feelings.

If you have shelf space for wonderful artwork and an evocative little love story, then this book is for you; I'll be getting my hands on the sequels to read more of the story. Five stars for beauty and originality.

Linda Bulger, 2008

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More Griffin & Sabine: An Extraordi... reviews
review by . November 29, 2010
Lovers love, and whatever distance or mystery is tossed between them, they still will love. In "Griffin & Sabine: An Extraordinary Correspondence" by Nick Bantock, we begin an intimate journey between two lovers destined to be enraptured in all that is dreamt of. They catapult the divide of geography and join mid-mail in a postal embrace, captured by Bantock in a sweet and phenomenal book.      Griffin is a postcard artist in England and Sabine is a stamp designer …
review by . September 15, 2008
This book is one where you must first suspend a little of your reality disbelief before you read it. It is a purported postal correspondence between two entities, the male Griffin and the female Sabine. The correspondence is initiated via a simple postcard to Griffin in England from Sabine in the South Pacific. The initial message puzzles Griffin, as Sabine knows things that no one should know and Griffin has no memory of her.    Sabine responds with a message that she has been watching …
review by . August 22, 2001
The true attraction of this book is that it is correspondence - letters to and from people who are at first wrapped in mystery, and whose characters develop over the length of the book. And don't we all love to read letters! Especially other people's - there is something mysterious and forbidden about it. The letters are beautifully written, and really engross you with their richness and detail.And it is a beautiful looking book too. The illustrations are wonderful - it is almost like a grown up …
About the reviewer
Linda Bulger ()
Ranked #148
When I love a book, I want to wave it in somebody's face and say "Look! Read this!" The internet was made for people like me, don't you think? The lunch.com crowd seems friendly enough...   … more
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About this book


This singular, magical volume invites readers to examine handmade postcards and open colorful envelopes as they eavesdrop on lonely London card-designer Griffin Moss and mysterious South Pacific islander Sabine Strohem. Sabine introduces herself to Griffin with a note congratulating him on a design on one of the postcards he illustrates--and alluding to an alteration he made during the creative process. Perplexed because he works alone and discusses his creative dilemmas with no one, he responds, begging her to enlighten him as to how she knew about the original design. In her next missive, she admits, "I share your sight," and their correspondence grows increasingly intimate. Sabine continues to make psychic observations and beckons to Griffin from her atoll; Griffin fantasizes about her to escape his drab existence, his interest turning to obsession. Their personalities shine through both their art and penmanship: Griffin's faintly disturbing, often subliminally violent collages, blocky printed words and imperfectly typewritten pages contrast with Sabine's whimsical doodles, fanciful postage stamps and flowing, calligraphic script. Pop-up book author Bantock's ( There Was an Old Lady ) images and concept will haunt the imagination.
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ISBN-10: 0877017883
ISBN-13: 978-0877017882
Author: Nick Bantock
Genre: Literature & Fiction
Publisher: Chronicle Books
First to Review

"A lovely little book"
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