Friday, July 7, 2017

Book Review: Kaspar by Diane Obsomsawin

I read a really interesting graphic novel about a real story from history: Kaspar by Dianne Obomsawin.

I had previously been acquainted with the story of Kaspar (and even did a post about it once: Piles of Dirt and Kaspar) but it was enjoyable to delve deeper into this bizarre story! The story is about Kaspar who appeared in a small town German town in 1868 with only a letter claiming his father was in the cavalry. Before winding up in the German town, he had spent his life in dark cellar all by himself. Kaspar is a mysterious figure with a mysterious past.

The validity of the story itself seems does a person exist in a cellar completely isolated from human companionship!? But sadly, even in modern days, we here stories of this. People do some really messed up things to each other sometimes.

Although the real Kaspar would have lived what must people would consider a bleak and sad life, the story feels hopeful. Kaspar has gumption and curiosity and a drive to understand this weird new world he exists in. Obomsawin is able to tell Kaspars story in an almost light-hearted while not trivializing the story of Kaspar.

Obosmsawins stylistic choice of simple drawings is a perfect accompaniment to a story about a young man who in a lot of ways will always be a child. One cannot spend their whole childhood isolated from humanity without always being different and in many ways more childlike than the rest of humanity.

Overall, this was a really great graphic novel about one of histories intriguing true life mysteries!

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