"I cannot sleep unless I am surrounded by books."

Borges

Sunday, February 25, 2007

The Professor's Daughter




The Professor’s Daughter
Authors: Joann Sfar & Emmanuel Guibert
Publisher: First Second
ISBN 13: 978-1-59643-130-0ISBN 10: 1-59643-130-X

Book Description from the publisher:

A 3,000-year-old romance.
Joann Sfar and Emmanuel Guibert bring the true spirit of Victorian London to life in this witty, engaging, sepia-colored tale of a proper but mischievous young girl and the mummy who opens his eyes for the first time in 3,000 years and instantly falls in love with her. Will the love between Lillian and Imhotep IV survive when their fathers, the London police, and even the Royal Archeological Society are all determined to keep them apart?

Written by the hilarious and insightful
Joann Sfar and painted in watercolors by the contemplative and beguiling Emmanuel Guibert, The Professor's Daughter tells an engaging, heart-warming love story through affecting, delightful art.


Two of France’s famous graphic novelists have teamed up to create an astonishing, beautiful and bizarre tale. Lillian, the daughter of a British professor who is taking home a mummy to put on display takes the mummy out of the sarcophagus and takes it on a stroll through Victorian London.


The mummy is Imhotep IV and he and Lillian fall deeply in love. They can’t seem to get past a myriad of obstacles though, things just keep getting in the way. His dead spirit children come looking for him and wonder where their mother is, his father seems bent on destroying him, the Professor wants his mummy back, the London police want Imhotep for murder and oh by the way, did I mention he’s a 1000 year old mummy? Yeah.


The Professor's Daughter is bizarre, well told and completely wonderful. The illustrations are absolutely gorgeous. The sepia tones depict Victorian London in a way that makes the pages look like an old book from that era. Lillian is charming, elegant and such a lady. Imhotep IV is elegant, gentlemanly and tends to be a dysfunctional. His relationship with his father, for instance is just too funny. It’s like any normal father and son’s misunderstanding and angst with the added quirk of being dead mummies wandering around London.

This graphic novel was highly acclaimed in France and deserves equal recognition here. It’s highly recommended.


About the Authors:

Joann Sfar is the son of Jewish parents and is one of the most important artists of the new wave of Franco-Belgian comics. Many of his comics were published by L’Association, which was founded in 1990 by Jean-Christophe Menu and six other artists. He also worked together with many of the new movement's main artists.

Emmanuel Guibert made his comics debut in 1992 with 'Brune', a painted comic story about the rise of fascism in Germany during the 1930s. He then did several comics for Lapin, the magazine of the renewing publishing house L'Association. One of Guibert's most impressive comics works of this period, 'La Guerre d'Alan', recounted the war experiences of Guibert's friend Alan Ingram Cope, who served as an American soldier in World War II, and later retreated to France.

FIRST SECOND is an imprint of Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishers, which owns some of America's most prestigious publishers, known for great integrity and literary quality. These include Henry Holt, FSG, St Martin's Press, Tor and Picador, all of which have garnered the most coveted prizes in publishing.All images are © copyright by their respective owners.mail@firstsecondbooks.com

1 comment:

Lisa Alvarado said...

Damn, Sol, you've done it again! Another sharp, smart, review--one on another book I've been salivating over. You've only made my problem worse!