Picture the Dead

Picture the Dead

by Adele Griffin

Hardcover

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Overview

A ghost will find his way home.

Jennie Lovell's life is the very picture of love and loss. First she is orphaned and forced to live at the mercy of her stingy, indifferent relatives. Then her fiancé falls on the battlefield, leaving her heartbroken and alone. Jennie struggles to pick up the pieces of her shattered life, but is haunted by a mysterious figure that refuses to let her bury the past.

When Jennie forms an unlikely alliance with a spirit photographer, she begins to uncover secrets about the man she thought she loved. With her sanity on edge and her life in the balance, can Jennie expose the chilling truth before someone-or something-stops her?

Against the brutal, vivid backdrop of the American Civil War, Adele Griffin and Lisa Brown have created a spellbinding mystery where the living cannot always be trusted and death is not always the end.

Praise for Picture the Dead

"A tour de force, a remarkable feat of visual and verbal storytelling, as playful as it is serious, as haunting as it is delightful."
-Michael Chabon, Pulitzer Prize—winning novelist

"Love story, mystery, ghost story...Picture the
Dead is a gripping, gorgeously graphic novel about a girl who risks everything...Jennie's voice and the pictures she shows us bring this swift, wonderfully chilling story to life."
-Kit Reed, author of The Night Children

"I loved Picture the Dead. Eerie, romantic, moody, and immersive. A beautifully illustrated gothic delight!"
-Holly Black, New York Times bestselling author of Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781402237126
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Publication date: 05/01/2010
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.30(d)
Lexile: 800L (what's this?)
Age Range: 11 - 17 Years

About the Author

ADELE GRIFFIN is the critically acclaimed author of numerous young adult novels, including My Almost Epic Summer, The Other Shepards, and National Book Award Finalists Where I Want to Be and Sons of Liberty. She lives in New York City.

LISA BROWN is the bestselling author and illustrator of How to Be and Sometimes and the very popular Baby Be of Use board book series from McSweeney's. She also publishes a bimonthly illustrated book review in the San Francisco Chronicle. She lives in California with her husband, author Lemony Snicket, and their son.

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Picture the Dead 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
Marcie77 More than 1 year ago
Picture the Dead is an unearthly romantic tale set in the civil war era. Jennie lives with her aunt and uncle and is engaged to their son, Will. After Will's death, his brother, Quinn, returns home injured. Quinn is moody and quiet and very reluctant to talk about the trials of war. However what he does tell Jennie disturbs her greatly. The Will that Quinn tells her about is not the Will she knows. Desperate to find the truth Jennie seeks the help of the supernatural. What she uncovers is far worse than she ever imagined. The story is told from Jennie's point of view. It also contains sections in the book that look like a scrapbook. The pictures in this book have scribbling underneath them expressing Jennie's feelings about that particular picture. This is an unique way to help convey the main character's feeling. Lisa Brown did a fantastic job. This really added to the book. I like that this book takes part during the civil war. The authors combine history with superstition and spins it into this mysterious tale of romance and intrigue. This was an enjoyable read from start to finish. I found myself caught up in the story line eager to uncover the truth with the heroine. Overall this was a really good read. It is haunting, creepy and eerie. Although there is quite a bit of drama, I think this book would be appropriate for kids twelve and up. It's fairly clean with only a little war time violence. However you might get chills while reading this book.
beckymmoe More than 1 year ago
Picture the Dead was an interesting book. It was a quick read, because it actually had pictures--the second author credited on the cover is actually the illustrator--pictures which gave clues to things that were about to happen or clarified things that already had. I enjoyed the story, but the pacing seemed a bit off--for a lot of it, it felt like not much was happening and then once it did, bam! it all happened at once. Still, though, it was a fun way to spend a few hours.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I totally reacmmed this book to others ota a great book!!! And a little scary hope you enjoy it as much as I did
TFS93 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Didn't like it at all!! This book was SO wordy! too much written here that wasn't needed!! I cannot imagine a child reading this. If you want a gothic ghost story there are many out there that are much better written then this. Very boring and very slow pacing. My recommendation is to skip this one, and I don't recommend it for children!
mt256 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Picture the Dead is an unearthly romantic tale set in the civil war era. Jennie lives with her aunt and uncle and is engaged to their son, Will. After Will's death, his brother, Quinn, returns home injured. Quinn is moody and quiet and very reluctant to talk about the trials of war. However what he does tell Jennie disturbs her greatly. The Will that Quinn tells her about is not the Will she knows. Desperate to find the truth Jennie seeks the help of the supernatural. What she uncovers is far worse than she ever imagined. The story is told from Jennie's point of view. It also contains sections in the book that look like a scrapbook. The pictures in this book have scribbling underneath them expressing Jennie's feelings about that particular picture. This is an unique way to help convey the main character's feeling. Lisa Brown did a fantastic job. This really added to the book. I like that this book takes part during the civil war. The authors combine history with superstition and spins it into this mysterious tale of romance and intrigue. This was an enjoyable read from start to finish. I found myself caught up in the story line eager to uncover the truth with the heroine. Overall this was a really good read. It is haunting, creepy and eerie. Although there is quite a bit of drama, I think this book would be appropriate for kids twelve and up. It's fairly clean with only a little war time violence. However you might get chills while reading this book.
hrrivera44 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I found the story very entertaining and suspenceful. Can you beleive I had a parent challenge this book because without reading it they said that they did not like their son to be reading ghost, wizard, spirit, devil books. I am a person that does not believe in ghost and I still read the book. I find the story full of old words that have fallen out of use, good use of setting, and romantically involving. Do not let the cover or the website full you about the contents of this book because while it may talk about the spiritualist movement that was very popular in this time period, it does not go overboard with the topic.
ChristianR on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Decent book, good for someone who likes the supernatural. Jennie is mourning her twin brother and cousin Will, who happened also to be her fiance, while she helps her other cousin Quinn recover from his Civil War injuries. She and Quinn had never been close, but after Will's death their relationship changes. All the while, Jennie has been living in her hated aunt and uncle's house as an unwanted freeloader, but she has no other place to go. But a feeling that Will has unfinished business and is trying to communicate with her has Jennie unsettled. She turns to a photographer who claims to be able to connect people with the deceased. Slowly, Jennie begins to unravel secrets about the brothers and the rest of the family.
amandalina on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I thought this was an enjoyable, quick read. I liked the historical and mystery aspects of it. I think the illustrations gave it a certain charm and really made the book unique. Great mystery for teen readers.
vampiregirl76 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Set during the American Civil War, Jennie Lovell is orphaned and living with her Aunt and Uncle -- who are anything but kind. She has lost her brother and now her fiance on the battlefields. With both the men gone Jennie feels lost. When she becomes friends with a spirit photographer she learns secrets that are almost too hard to bare.An interesting story about war, spirits and death. I've always found stories of the civil war captivating, especially hauntings or ghost stories. I found Jenny's journey very enjoyable. The book has a definite Gothic feel, rich with historical detail that will keep the reader captivated. Among the death and the grief there is a bit of a romance, but when the mystery is play out the relationship takes a surprising turn I wasn't expecting. Picture the Dead is a dark, mysterious, a deliciously creepy read.
roses7184 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
We meet Jennie Lovell, a 16 year old girl who has suffered more than her fair share of tragedy in her short life. No parents, a brother who has passed on, and an Aunt and Uncle who ignore her very existence. Life for Jennie isn't easy and now, with her fiancé dead, she's a burden that might be put out into the street. What's a girl to do?Jennie is a completely fabulous female protagonist. As my readers, you all know by now how I feel about female protagonist. Love them, or hate them, there's not really an in between for me. Strong in spirit, intelligent, and unwilling to take no as an answer, Jennie makes the story. Although she is in a Civil War era setting, there is a fire in her that would make "today's woman" proud! Following her through this haunting story was pure magic.I can honestly say that being thrown straight into Jennie's tumultuous family relationship was a little hard to deal with at first. It seems at first as if there isn't much time to get to know her at all. However, reading on I realized that we do get to know Jennie quite well, just in bits and pieces throughout the book. I do believe this is the first book I've read where there is such a slow progression of character building, but in the long run I loved it! My absolute favorite part about this slow uncovering of her character were the scrapbook pages. Jennie keeps a scrapbook of mementos, and each chapter begins with a page. Lisa Brown did such a wonderful job on these, they will completely draw you in!Reading through this book was a bit of heaven for me, because I am extremely interested in the Civil War era. A time where men provided, and women were dainty. Will and Quinn were brothers in blood, but war tainted them into two entirely different men. That fascinates me to no end. The setting is what drew me to this book in the first place, and I wasn't disappointed at all. The era is written about perfectly, showing readers clearly the precarious position that women of the times were often in. Women were well taken care of, as long as their men were alive.The twists and turns in this book are amazing. It is the type of book that will leave you audibly gasping and resisting the temptation to turn ahead to see what happens. Picture the Dead stands out in my mind as one of the most interesting and unique books I've read this year! I can honestly say that I'll be purchasing a copy of this book for my very own quite soon. Its haunting storyline is still with me almost a week after reading it, and I feel the need to dive back in to this unique world.
haleyknitz on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Picture the Dead by Adele Griffin, Illustrated by Lisa BrownGenre: YA Historical fictionISBN: 9781402237126Published May 1 2010Rating: 4When Jennie's fiancé dies in war and only his brother, Quinn, comes home, Jennie is heartbroken. She soon learns there is more to Will's death than she thought. She is haunted by his ghost, and by the mysteries left unanswered. Piece by piece she begins to uncover his secrets¿ and at the same time starts to fall in love with Quinn. But there is always more to a story when there are ghosts involved.Picture the Dead had a lot of thought put into it. The mysteries presented and the way they were unearthed were fabulous¿there were questions and surprises and answers that I didn't expect all the way up to the last page.I liked Jennie, though I didn't like Quinn at all, even after she grew to love him. I had never met Will, since he was dead in the beginning of the story, but by the end of the book I felt I knew why Jennie had loved him.I will say that the ending didn't have nearly enough closure for me, and I am left feeling slightly confused, though satisfied by how all the events played out.The illustrations were very good, although I had a very hard time reading what was written on them. Hopefully in the finished copy of the book the words will be easier to read.Content/recommendation: clean, mild language. Ages 13+
galleysmith on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Picture the Dead is an interesting story about the impact the loss of a young Civil War soldier has on his family. Not the first to fall to the hands of the Confederacy Will leaves behind his fiance Jennie, a young girl with no family of her own. Having already grown up at the unrelenting hands of Will¿s condescending mother and indifferent father she is once again thrust into second class citizen status upon news of his demise. Practically a servant Jennie endures the continually passive aggressive attitude of her aunt as each day more and more of her life ¿ her engagement ring, her freedom from housework, etc ¿ is taken away from her.Enhanced beautifully by illustrations created by Lisa Brown, Picture the Dead not only tells a story but shows it. Joining in on a trend I¿ve seen more of recently, the addition of pages providing the reader with visual elements adding further depth and perspective to the written words, Picture the Dead embraces it well. Setting the tone for both characters and physical surroundings Brown provides the reader with excellent visuals. Her imagery was lovely in the ARC I was reading but I imagine that the final version is even more pleasing to the eye. The best part is that these additions don¿t overwhelm the story nor are readers wading through useless information. I have only one complaint about their inclusion and that is that the font selected for Will¿s letters was difficult to read. This was a minor issue, however, and one that should not keep anyone from reading the book.Another aspect of the story that wasn¿t overdone or out of place was the inclusion of small paranormal elements. The infusion of ghosts made sense and was a believable addition to the story. Not wanting to spoil any of the twists and turns as it relates to these aspects of the story I¿ll simply say that the way this element of the story played out was an interesting addition and created a richer tone to the mystery. While not a mystery story in the grandest sense, there were several twists and revalations throughout that were very well done. I was so caught up in the history and Jennie¿s characterization that some crept up on me. I¿m sure this was Griffin¿s intent and she did not disappoint as I enjoyed being surprised by a few of the turns I encountered.Certainly age appropriate for the young adult crowd and I would even go as far as saying that the middle grade reader would enjoy this book as well. I don¿t know that the attention of the youngest middle graders would be grabbed by it, the story would need to be a bit more amped up for them, but certainly if a teacher were wanting a fun book that gave some small into families affected by the Civil War this might be a good quick read that would exemplify a few points here and there.In the end, if you like historical perspective with some good imagery attached Picture the Dead is definitely worth a read.
booksandwine on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Picture The Dead by Adele Griffin and illustrated by Lisa Brown was a great change of pace from the last book I read, The Queen of Palmyra. Picture The Dead completely absorbed me and I did not want to set it down. The book opens with a note of melancholy. The Civil War or rather, the War Between The States is raging in the South, Sherman's March has already occurred. The reader is transported to the upper middle class town of Brookline, Massachusetts. The main character, Jennie, has a love who is fighting in the war. That love is her cousin. Back then cousin love was totally all the rage. Why roam...Anyways, Jennie pretty much lives with her aunt Trunchbull, only her aunt is not Trunchbull, but she's kind of scary and mean! To cope with her grief, Jennie turns to spiritualism. Ya'll spiritualism swept America away during the Victorian era. People were swindled out of money because the spiritualists peddled communication with the dead. Can you honestly blame someone who is grieving for turning to such means? I know I can't.I don't want to give away too much of the plot, so let's go into style. The story is told in first person, which has to feel authentic for me to enjoy it. Jennie's voice never felt forced. You know how sometimes historical fiction doesn't feel right because the voice is too modern? Or how maybe the author overwhelms you with antiquated language? Well, I thought Jennie embodied Civil War Era America.My favorite thing about this book, however, was that it was an affirmation of femalehood. Throughout the book, we see Jennie trapped by her circumstances. She lives with her aunt and uncle because her parents are dead, therefore is prey to their whims. Her beloved is dead, so she is reduced to even lower circumstances than those she is already in. However, Jennie doesn't keep her head down. She boldly goes after the answers she needs. She doesn't let her circumstances get in the way of her wants. I love that. I love that despite her circumstances she remains headstrong. Yet, there is recognition of how a man does have it easier in this era.Here's a quote which goes with my statement:"If I'd been his brother instead of his siter, I'd have stepped firm into Toby's boots Rebs, training to become the Union scout he'd wanted to be.... But I'm not a man, and my destiny is passive--to wait, to hope, to grieve. I observe and collect, secreting what I find inside my scrapbook for no one but me to see." ARC pg. 8
cmwilson101 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Picture The Dead by Adele Griffin and illustrated by Lisa Brown is an interesting mystery about a woman & her relationships during the Civil War time. She is an orphan, taken in by a cold Aunt and Uncle. Her twin brothers and her two male cousins are her only friends, and they are sent away to fight in the war. One comes back, and she will not rest until she finds out exactly what happened to the other two....even if it means consulting a medium. The author and illustrator did a beautiful job of capturing the feeling of the Civil War period. I enjoyed the book greatly.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not great, not awful.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Its a good book but kind of confusing with the supernatual and angel thing
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
pagese More than 1 year ago
This book surprised me! I think I was expecting a little bit more of a ghost story, which this story really isn't. You do get a little bit of that creepy feeling every once in awhile. But, it's more of a story about a young women coming to terms with the chaos and loss that surrounds her. I had a hard time getting into the story at first, and wasn't sure how I felt about the illustrations that came at the beginning of each chapter. But, the story builds into a wonderful mystery as you follow Jennie while she's trying to piece together what happened. What she discovers was not what I was expecting and the dramatic ending fit perfectly with the events that unfolded in the book. I enjoyed the spiritualistic aspect of the story. I could take or leave the illustrations though. They were an interesting addition to the story, but I found myself skipping them more than anything.
ImaginaryReads More than 1 year ago
Jennie is told that Will died in battle, but certain clues lead her to believe that something else happened. Something that Quinn and everyone else involved wants to cover up. With the belief that Will is haunting her, Jennie makes full use of her brother's spy tactics to figure out just what happened and if the true Will is the same Will that she knew and loved. In the spiritual photographer Geist, she finds a friend and fellow believer in ghosts. In Quinn, she finds comfort and a potential love she had never before considered. However, there is more to the true story and circumstances to Will's death than she could have imagined, and learning the truth could undermine the security that she's scrambling to establish in a hostile home. I love the subtle taste with which the supernatural elements are inserted into the story. There are signs and suggestions that a restless spirit haunts Jennie and the Prichett family; at the same time, it is easy to believe that Jennie might be being played and the true identity of the spirit is human. Whatever we choose to believe is up to us, the reader, but Jennie strongly believes that Will has come back to help her uncover the truth behind his death. Best of all, the story will keep you guessing and second guessing yourself on what really happened. Even after thinking through all the possibilities, I was beginning to fall for the lies when the truth came out, which was not at all what I was expecting after all that happens. It seems that I am not cut out for spy work at all! Picture the Dead isn't a long book, and the pages are filled with pictures from Jennie's scrapbook, always foreshadowing what is to come. The simplicity of the language lends power to the words wrought with emotion and is at a level where younger readers may also enjoy this beautiful, poignant story. The ease with which this story can be read and the gorgeous illustrations make this book a good read for readers of all ages.
Catie22 More than 1 year ago
I'll be very honest and say that I had some preconceived notions about how awesome this book was going to be because it had three of my favorite things: ghosts, the civil war and PICTURES! Yes, I'll admit that I'm basically 12 at heart and love illustrations to go along with a story. I'm a very visual person so the right illustrations can really enhance my reading enjoyment. Many people scoff at such things but I welcome pictures in novels! Ghosts and the Civil War kind of go hand in hand for me so if a book has both, it is a must read. Throw in an author like Adele Griffin and a super spooky plot and I expect nothing less than awesome. Picture the Dead mostly lived up to this expectation. Mostly. LIKES: Scrapbooks: Not only was this book beautifully illustrated, the illustrations were done as a scrapbook. They included letters and drawings as well as photos. Each scrapbook page pulled you farther into the story and helped to move it along at an exciting pace. The only problem with this is that I did catch myself cheating and jumping ahead to see what pictures were next. Bad! Twists and turns: I thought at one point that I new exactly what the "twist" was going to be and I was feeling pretty smug about the whole then. Then the story did a one-eighty and I was completely at a loss. I just didn't see the end coming and It hit me hard. I love it when a story surprised me. Jennie: Jennie was a genuinely likeable character with a lot of spunk, especially for a nineteenth century girl. I really felt for her and cared about her plight. She pulled me into the story and made it very real. DISLIKES: Kissing cousins, no seriously: First off let me say that I understand that it was common practice until fairly recently (in the grand scheme of things) for people to marry cousins. That being said, it still creeps me right out. For whatever reason I just can't put it in the context of "that was then, this is now". This is probably because I grew up being very close to my cousins. They were like my siblings so the idea of being romantically involved with one of them makes me want to heave. Jennie isn't just involved with one, but two cousins, with whom she has lived for the past several years after the deaths of her parents. This is probably the thing that bothered me most about the book. It could have been scarier: I was looking forward to a scary read and, while spooky, I wouldn't call this book scary. It really read more like an historical fiction with some ghostly elements. I would have like to have seen a bit more creepiness. Jennie's Uncle: This character really didn't add much to the story except to underline Jennie's desperate situation. I wish he would have been developed a bit more. When all is said and done, Picture the Dead is exactly what it claims to be: a spooky, romantic story with some really great twists and turns. The illustrations and the scrapbook idea only adds to the story and the overall ambiance of the tale. This is a quick, fun read that is sure to keep the reader guessing.
Mother-Daughter-Book-Club More than 1 year ago
Jennie Lovell has suffered much tragedy in her 16 years. Her parents died, her twin brother was killed fighting in the Civil War, and now her fiancé/cousin has also fallen on the battlefield. The aunt and uncle who have taken her in-never overly warm towards her- have fallen on hard times. She doesn't know what she'll do if they put her out. Jennie's cousin Quinn seems to be harboring a secret about his brother's death, and his own wounding in combat. When the family turns to a spiritualist photographer to help calm their grief, Jennie begins to feel her fiancé is trying to send a message through the prints made. Deciphering the meaning of what she sees may just save her life. Picture the Dead, written by Adele Griffin and illustrated by Lisa Brown, intertwines the interest in spiritualism that was rampant during the American Civil War with the story of soldiers who fought in the war and the families they left behind. So many young men died in bloody conflict it's not surprising that their mothers, fathers and siblings sought to know if their loved ones found comfort on the other side. Photography had only recently been created, so it's maybe not surprising that people tied the mysteries that went on in a photographer's dark room with the mysteries of death. Readers also see the precarious position that women of the times were often in. Dependent on the men in their lives for support, their entire futures could easily be turned upside down if a husband, father or brother died. During the Civil War, many of them did. Part historical fiction, part mystery, Picture the Dead is deliciously creepy and fun to read. Jennie keeps a scrapbook, and black-and white illustrations portray the things she secretes away: newspaper clippings, photographs, lists, letters, and notes from her twin. I highly recommend this book for mother-daughter book clubs with girls aged 14 and up.'
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Do someone now how to get a book gone?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
WHAT IS THIS??? WHAT IS BLACKFIRE????? IS THIS A BOOK OR WHAT??????